At the festival site, the main stage with a "Lollipop" banner and Percy Nilegård in the middle was the first thing that caught our eyes (if you don't count the man in the Santa Claus outfit who at first looked like a statue). The smaller stage, a tent called "Popcorn" would have "local talents" they said. A couple of minutes later, we met Linus Larson from Midnight Moses who explained that they would play there and that they had got the gig only an hour earlier, so it was really soundcheck time. The rest of the site was filled with vendors and a basketball area, where the whole thing started.
Peter Siepen, from Z-Tv, announced that there would be a game between three girls from the professional team Visby AIK and three Lollipoppers. The Lollipop team had some help from a guy on stilts, who easily dropped the ball through the net at times. It was a pretty close game, but the Visby AIK team won with 36-22. Z-Tv with Peter as captain covered the festival, and later said it would be shown on tuesday august 1st.
When the clock says 6 pm, the main show starts. Percy Nilegård enters the stage and greets the audience, approximately 2.000, in his now well-known way. Using an elevator next to the stage, he shows the difference between Lollipop (up) and Hultsfred (down) to the audience's applause and laughter. Ten minutes later Sam Spandex interrupts with the also now well-known technical problem. A circuit needs to be replaced. A very successful choice, to have these two as conferenciers. They just can't fail. And a great way to start the night with two of the best comedians Sweden can offer today. They both come back during the night, between bands, for shorter sketches like for example "Fryshuset" and a song from Spandex. Both modern classics.
The first band on stage is Kent. I never really did understand what was so great about them, even though I have seen them live several times. But this time it was different. This time I knew. They really are as good as everyone says. Starting off with 'Blå Jeans'. Blasting guitars and Joakim Berg's voice in perfect match with the music, there is really nothing that can go wrong. Sami (guitar) jumps around. Joakim Berg (vocals) squirms. Twists. Jumps. Runs around on the stage and stops only to sing at times when the guitars slow down. The whole band's appearance is perfect. It's not boring perfect. It's just a rough and unpolished kind of perfect.
Brainpool enters the stage fifteen minutes after Kent is done, at 7.15 pm. Probably the most popular band here. The audience goes crazy and it's hot in the pit. First surprise - they play two covers. One of them in the middle of their "old" hit 'Lost My Girl', and the other one is Kim Wilde's 'Kids In America'(!). Second surprise - they have an extra number. "Because we like to play when people talk funny", Janne Kask (vocals) explains. Their set is about an hour, and contains most of their known songs, like 'Bandstarter' which they chose to play just before the last song. I have trouble with the "happy pop" Brainpool supplies, I need more guitars, and I heard someone saying "They're better on the CD", but the rest of the audience seemed to enjoy it really well.
At eight pm, it was time for Midnight Moses in the Popcorn tent. They're from Gotland, but live in Stockholm these days. "Pop with a twist", would be my attempt trying to describe their music. Linus Larson is probably Gotland's best guitarist, and it shows. His solos makes my skin crawl. He is that good. Eric Palmqwist (vocals) has a way to catch the audience's attention with his stage performance which is excellent. They fill the tent to the max and play their set, including 'Superman' and 'Man In The Middle' which are superb pieces of pop that makes me smile.
When Sator enters the stage, the rain falls heavily. Unfortunately I didn't bring any rain-clothes, and had to take cover in a tent, and missed most of their set. Solveig had been better prepared, and managed to take these photos. I did see (and hear) 'I Wanna Go Home' though.
D.A.D., the last act before the DJ's would take over, really is a fantastic band. Tough. Heavy. Hard. A headbangers dream in Visby that, now pitch black, night. I had listened to them before, but that was many years ago. They are even better today. Even though it was pretty hard to hear what they said between the songs, the audience was ecstatic, and steam rose from the pit in a steady stream. The best band to end the night and the festival, this time, with.
by Erik Söderström © 1995 Scandinavian Indie.
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