Sunstroke 2020 kicked off in Dublin on Thursday night (27th February 2020), with Fangclub, Dead Label and more launching Ireland’s newest alt metal experience. Taking place in Blood Mary’s, the invite-only event was held in celebration of this summer’s Sunstroke Festival, which takes place 13th – 14th June at Punchestown Racecourse, and is set to feature headliners Faith No More and Deftones.
The revival of the Sunstroke name follows on from the original events which took place in the mid to late 1990s, and featured the likes of Soundgarden, White Zombie and Therapy? This summer's welcome return, and the first multi-day event of its' kind in Ireland, is set to feature a host of well-known worldwide acts, as well as the cream of rising Irish talent.
With a four band bill of homegrown acts that are also all scheduled to appear at Sunstroke Festival that also included alt metallers Greyface and anarcho punk outfit Paranoid Visions, the evening was a chance to launch the event proper, in spectacular style.
It fell to Dubliners Greyface to open Sunstroke, who, like the festival bill, showcased their diversity from raging angst to measured alternative melody. Speaking after their brief set, front man Shea, was clearly chuffed at being the first band charged with resurrecting Sunstroke, saying; “It’s exciting for us. It’s definitely a good place to start; the first band of Sunstroke? We’ll take that!”
Looking forward to the Co. Kildare fest, the singer said; “I’ve gone to Download Festival in the UK these last few years, and there’s such a community around that, and it seems to me like Sunstroke is really going to share that sense of same community vibe that goes with heavier, more alternative music.”
Fellow Dubliners Dead Label meanwhile, who pulled off the impossible for a Thursday night by inciting a mosh pit during their set, enthused about what having such a festival right here in Ireland means to them. Said drummer Claire Percival; “I have to say, I’m absolutely delighted that Ireland is finally getting a proper metal festival. They’re bringing over some amazing bands, and I think the metal community itself is just absolutely buzzing for it”.
Dead Label, who have graced stages all over Europe including those at Bloodstock in the UK, and Metal Days in Slovenia, may be no strangers to festivals, but Claire gushed about Ireland finally getting its’ own event, saying; “I think this going to be really special because it’s going to be Irish, with a big Irish crowd, so I think it’s going to be exceptional”.
Closing out the night, Universal Music signees Fangclub raised the roof, setting the scene for what’s to come later this year with ripping versions of ‘Hesitations’ and ‘Bullet Head’.
Also featuring The Jesus and Mary Chain, recent Ireland visitors The Hu, Gojira, Sepultura and more, tickets for Sunstroke Festival are available now. For more information, visit the official Sunstroke site.
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