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A look inside New Noise Fest 2013!

Right after my January 2013 feature on the almighty Fluff Fest, this is my second promotion feature and a lengthy decomposition of another amazing European DIY hardcore punk / metal fest called New Noise Fest, to take place on August 3rd, 2013 in Karlsruhe, Germany. This means more amazing artists, great events, delicious veg food, cozy tents and lots of fun. 

RSVP here and scroll down to learn everything about the fest, its history, line-up, DIY ethics tied up to it, TRAPPED UNDER ICE and DEFEATER controversies :), the evolution of FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND and a lot more, all straight from Lucas, the father of the fest.

Hey, man! It’ a pleasure to have on-board the person who managed to put together so many amazing artists on one bill for the eighth time now! :) How are the preparations for this year’s festival currently going?

First of all thanks for supporting a smaller fest like the new noise! Thats why were still alive!
Right now were in the last steps for the 8th edition of the new noise festival. This time of the planing season is one of the hardest for us,but we think positive all the time, cause for all of us three this is a “private” pleasure. We all have fulltime jobs and the fest will be organized in our free time. So its hard in the last weeks before the fest starts to get everything together, organize everything and combine that with our main jobs. Not easy, but more than worth since 8 years! in this time we prepare the last details of the showday with points like finding helping hands,searching for sleeping places for bands and organizing catering stuff…we cant wait till the fest starts!

Tell me more about the “we” :) How many people are in the crew? Also, is this year’s spot the usual place where the fest takes place? 

“We” are myself Lucas, Chris and Alex! Its the second year since we started doing the fest together in this combination! the other 6 edition i did by myself alone! but in the last years the old venue in Durmersheim (located 15 minutes away from Karlsruhe) became way to small and no safe anymore so i decided to move into the city. this big change asked for some more steps than in the years before. new venue,new owners,more costs,more safety arrangement and tons of “small” things to think about! so it was nearly impossible to continue as a one-man-army! ;-) Alex & Chris supported the fest as well in the years before and we already did club shows together in Karlsruhe. we know each other now for more than 6 years, I know Chris for nearly 10 years! so i knew that this combination will be a good step forward for the fest and of course also for me,cause im doing the festival in my free time and i also have to focus on my main job! this makes it easier and each of us can enjoy the festival day a bit more than in the past cause we exculpate each other a lot in advance and at the show day! but of course we have more very important people in the back! we wouldn’t be there without Benjamin! He is doing our whole graphic stuff, websites, blogs, flyers, posters etc… in the last years! 

The current spot for the fest is in Karlsruhe in a nice green and vegetal grassland with a nice skate park and our 3 circus-tent in 3 different sizes! This area is a permanent facility! and it is NOT a real ordinary circus with animals. its a local social and youth culture organization which is doing different kinds of workshops and smaller events for young people and kids in Karlsruhe like parcour-workshops, theater, acrobatic and different sport activities! its the best decision we made in the last years to move the fest to this awesome spot. it fits perfectly our requirements to organize this special fest!

Yeah man! Sounds interesting. And why tents? :) Weren’t you tempted to organize the fest in a proper venue, a club or something? What are some of the pros and cons of tent shows?

We started the fest 8 years ago in Durmersheim with an outdoor stage,no tents,just a small stage in the middle of the green! looked great,familiar and easy to built! BUT then the weather didn’t help us too much in the next years,so we were forced to think about other opportunities to continue with this kind of a festival! so we thought about,talked a lot and found an good alternative! we took one bigger tent and one smaller for the floor show-stage! since the 2nd edition we got tents and i think it was a wise decision! Don’t deal with the weather! ;-)))

Since we moved to Karlsruhe and to the new venue,we got 2 circus tents,one fits around 700 and the other 400 people! we became good feedback,so we think it was a good choice to call it a “open air” bit still using tent! more safety for visitors and bands guaranteed! of course the air isnt the best after 10 hours of bands playing inside, people moshing around and so on…but our tents are completely “smoke free”! so its a pure and familiar hardcore atmosphere like in a small dark concert-cellar,but with the big chance to step out within a second,breath fresh air,watch the sun and smell vegan steaks! ;-) and by the way this year we organized a “3rd stage”,its more a small floor show tent! very small & familiar for the bands playing there!

Ok, speaking of the beginnings, how did the idea of the fest first come about?

Well it started first with an simple idea, no fixed plans, just a thing you talk about while chilling with friends, discussing about music, bands, shows etc… I started shows nearly 12 years ago. I crew up in the local hiphop scene in Karlsruhe. My first steps with own shows happened with 16! I did many shows in the local hiphop scene. For example stuff like KRS ONE, GANG STARR, SOULS OF MISCHIEF, ZION I, WU-TANG KILLA BEEZ, AFU RA, JERU DE DAMAJA and many more! That was the time of my life! Once i ended at this point where you need something new, some fresh air and new challenges! While I did hiphop shows I got in contact with Chris (right now the 3rd member of the new noise crew). He is doing hardcore shows since so many years in Karlsruhe & trier! Something like a local legend! :-)

More and more I felt in love with this new surrounding and this new feeling of hardcore & punk music! After a while I started my first own hardcore show in my hometown with the us band STRETCH ARM STRONG… from there on everything came together, hiphop shows, first steps in the hardcore scene,the crude idea of an open air fest in my hometown…in Durmersheim there was no place fpr hardcore music, just a small familiar village! So my plan of doing a festival was born! I did some shows before in the local youth centre, where the first 6 new noise edition took place. So we forged plans of building a “small” open air for the local kids & bands! It started! And now you can see where we are right now! :-)

Amazing. Have you organized hip-hop / hardcore fusion shows? It’s one hell of an idea, I must say. Everyone should go and see one someday! :)

To be honest,i did!
While i met Chris we talked about such an idea! first,it only was an idea! but it became real while we started a small concert series called “ruff skillz”! funny name,but it should be a combination of the brute hardcore sound and the fine wordplays of hiphop and rap music! so we fixed this idea,talked about some possible bands to combine for a show and searched for a good venue! so we did 2 shows with this extraordinary combination! actually it isn’t. just think about crossover bands etc…so we had bands like e-town concrete,born from pain & a local legend band named pole* from Karlsruhe on the hardcore side and local hiphop acts + BUKUE ONE from Cali and from the SOULS OF MISCHIEF surrounding! it was an experiment! it was fun and exciting! BUT it didn’t worked at the end! to less people, maybe to scared of an evening with some extreme music scenes! maybe! but nowadays it is working, no bigger festival can life without bands from both worlds!

True that. The Warsaw show I’m thinking about worked out pretty well, see for yourself:

Alright, let’s move forward with the New Noise, shall we? :)
Tell me, why the choice to focus on these particular genres. Did you feel they were not as well represented by other fests? ¾ of the line-up smells like a favorite meal of every Fluff Fest attendee :) which is, of course, amazing!

Well, this a very good question,cause many people are asking or telling us such things like ” yeah,this is the German fluff” or “sometimes you’re going to be as big as fluff fest” etc… honestly,the very first new noise edition was built on my first videos &∓ pictures I’ve seen from fluff many years ago! this influenced me a lot. I mean I’ve been to a lot to festivals & open airs. not only hardcore,also hiphop and general music stuff…but cause i was born in 1985,so i had not the chance to feel the 80´s HC scene with all these mind blowing bands,legendary shows and stories! so seeing such pictures and impressions from Czech Republic was very inspiring for me! but the NN idea was crown before i heard from Fluff Fest first time. but its true that this fest maybe wouldn’t be a one like this if i wouldn’t have seen videos of a festival can be different than all these other faceless rock festivals i was tiered of! i always wanted to have DIY based bands with good attitudes. but i also worked hard for locals bands not only from the HC scene,also metal and metalcore was always a part of NN. but you can see that new noise & fluff and also Ieper Fest are going some similar ways in the last year. for me it doesn’t matter if some bands playing all these festivals too, New Noise is New Noise and not more or less! ;-) you know what i want to say,i have so much respect for all the other promoters and people who are doing festival in the summer time,which is mostly the hardest thing you can do as a promoter cause no other time of the year gives people more opportunities in watching shows than june, july & august! but if you see were working damn hard to create a lineup which is different to others. last year was a year where nearly 90% of the DIY HC scene was on tour! :-) CELESTE, DOWNFALL OF GAIA, BIRDS IN ROW, LOMA PRIETA, COK, RAEIN etc…this was special and this year its very different. We booked bands like NAPALM DEATH & INTEGRITY, a bit harder than last year, maybe also a bit less DIY-Bands, maybe 1-2 more metal influenced bands (WAR FROM A HARLOTS MOUTH, WHITECHAPEL) and maybe some surprise bands which wouldn’t play ever at fluff i think…so this was our aim to create a special one this year. 2012 it was very DIY based and also special and exclusive in its own way. we had a very exclusive CHURCH OF RA live set which will never be played in this combination,also the RAEIN guys drove over 1500 km to play New Noise 7, ADORNO only came for this fest too,so this is our aim to get special stuff on stage,not only booking all possible tours in the summer together for the festival day, this would be too easy i think! :-) so this year i think there are only a handful of bands which play both festivals,thats good,because its our aim to present a special lineup,to reach people from all over the world and to bring bands together which would not play together on on stage if we wouldn’t not have booked them! look,also the fluff boys tried their best this year,they got CATHARSIS, thats fucking great! So i think you can compare they way we all booking a festival,theres a same way, the same motivation,also our background and the reason were doing festivals, but if the lineups are too similar sometimes than its just the good taste maybe and not the thing that we need to book bands which play there or there cause if would not book them than the people maybe will not visit our fest or something like that… :-))) of course were looking into all overs from the agencies and also we need to to book some bands which are playing a lot in the summer time,and thats also cool…but our aim is the mixture of bands, scenes, peoples and genres…we don’t want to be a copy, we just want to be the New Noise Fest in Karlsruhe/Germany with some well known bands, some surprises,exclusive band which are touring in the summer too much, good locals and also sometimes with legends on stage (NAPALM DEATH)! :-)))

Ha! Actually you’ve just answered my next 2 questions, “How is this edition different than the previous one and how much have things changed since the early days of the fest? Maybe you could expound more on the last aspect?

Sorry :-) people asking this a lot, so i was just in a good talking mood…:-)

but yeah,next question…;-) well obviously a lot of changes on the first view. so for visitors things like the new venue since 2 years, the entrance fee after 6 years of being a “for-free-fest” and also some new ways we took if you thing about the lineups in the past. thats what people see first,of course! but for us 3 so many stuff changed,we moved a whole fest with all these things around it into another city,that was incredible hard and detailed work,believe me. Chris organized so many stuff for the new venue and helped a lot with venue specific things and gave a lot answers,that was the hardest part,but i one way also on the the easiest…:-)

If you’ve been in Durmersheim @ new noise once you will may understand what i mean. we had a lot safety problems,also with the electricity, parking space, gastro stuff etc…i mean this was just a small youth-centre in Durmersheim who helped,no big team,no festival specialists! ;-) just a handful kids and and me with the help of my family and friends. for visitors there where only 2-3 changes but for us with was nearly a start of a new fest,cause the new venue is such a great one. this venue helps us a lot to organize now easier and faster,cause its easily said a “real” festival spot and not just a “green” in the middle of nowhere with no real electricity stuff and so on. we didn’t changed our way of booking or our attitude. we just moved and now we can celebrate a safer organized fest. thats better for everyone! :-)

Cool :)

Back to the line-up. What shows are you most excited to see? What acts on the bill are you most proud of booking?

Well, this day of the year is that one i am most excited of,kind of my personal highlight of the year! even more excited than on my birthday or Christmas or some stuff like that! :-) since 8 years this day rules my life! of course ive a main job im doing,i have my family and private activities which are extremely important too,but the New Noise Day changed my way of working,it influenced my private life and also my point of view on whats realy important in life for me! sorry for getting to personal! ;-) but thats not just a festival with a huge budget,tons of popular rock bands and some big sponsors behind it! I’m doing also a lot of other shows during the year with the “new noise fest & konzerte” organization,but the NN is the ONE of the year we all work and cant wait for cause this is the chance to bring most of our favourite bands together on a special bill, meet old friends and just follow our passion for one day!

This year I’m very excited on how people like the bit “wild” combination we booked! but I cant wait for BROKEN TEETH, COK, EMPOWERMENT and of course NAPALM DEATH! but at the end of the day i may have seen 1-2 songs at all…:-)

I’m not proud of the booking,cause thats my job or my passion! im proud of the whole fest and how it crew up!

For the people i think we got special bands on stage! Lento aren’t playing that much in Germany,also FFAF aren’t playing other HC-Festivals, think this Band is one of the Bands I’m really excited,cause many many people are thinking they shouldn’t be on a NN Lineup! But we think they should! definitely! :-)

Yeah man! And that’s what I love about this relatively new approach of yours. How do you like their new stuff?

I love the new songs and also their attitude! i mean they play also bigger festivals and some stuff like Rock am Ring and so on…but for us that was no reason not letting them play! we had discussions last year about why were booking DEFEATER and why are we doing a club show for trapped under ice ( i think you know why people asked after this 2 bands especially!) and also this year again people asking why a band like FFAF need to play our Fest! easy answer: cause we want them! :-) and also why not? great music,good roots,nice guys…thats what it need to play i think. not if they are totally DIY or playing small self -governing spots. i love the new songs,they are not as “soft” and emo related like some of them before! they got nice,fast and singalong songs! i love that and I’m excited to see you the tent will be packed till the last space will be gone during their set! same with WHITECHAPEL! Some of us know people in these bands personal. were not only talking with the agencies and say “OK lets book them”

. we also talk with bands while meeting them,tell them about our fest,our attitude and the special familiar new noise atmosphere! in the last years we also decided to book some of our favourite bands were listening to in our free time and not only bands who are touring in this period our fest will happen. i mean thats our favourite day of the year! why not listening to great music while race around and sweating …:-)

Are TUI still outlaws in some of the German punk scenes after the infamous fight some time ago? :)

I think so. last year a guy from hamburg wrote me that i will contact all other bands playing new noise and tell them what bands like defeater & TUI “did” and that the other bands should think about canceling new noise! also in some other cities people forced local promoters to cancel shows with them. most of these people haven’t talked with the bands in personal,so they don’t know any details and reasons. they also know what was written on the Internet. i talked with Justice about that fight and also with the other involved people and everything was said. you saw them at fluff last year? awesome live set,great atmosphere! nobody complained i think!

Yeah man. But the DEFEATER being whistled out and dissed so bad was enough. Where the hell did that come from?

You don’t know that story with their shirt design? the benefit tshirt for ex-soldiers with traumata?

Yup, I’ve been there and read their statements, but did they deserve it?

Hmmm, hard to answer, but i think standing in front of a band,throwing stuff on them and screaming loud slogans and holding banners up in the air feels a bit strange to me. That’s definitely too much. talking to a band after or before a show in an quiet atmosphere would be a much better way to find out if a band deserves so much discussions or not! we talked with them and we continued with them on our lineup!

It tells it all, Lucas.

OK, let’s go back to New Noise Fest. Besides shows, can you tell me about non-musical events planned for this year’s festival?

Yeah of course,we have a lot stuff between this hard, sweaty shows…we’ve a smaller 3rd stage where we present an Q&A stage with a friend of mine who is doing a regular radio job in a bigger station in Karlsruhe. he will talk with some bands in a 10-15 minutes interview on this smaller stage in our cafe-area! we choose for that some of the bands where usual new noise visitors wouldn’t expect to see them @ New Noise. So we will bring these bands in direct contact to our visitors!

Other side we have the regular merch area, a cafe tent with a lot of vegan stuff and coffee…political organizations, animal rights people,good distros and local streetwear crews will present their stuff! so a lot to do while not watching any band…and of course you need to taste our vegan-steaks! we only present one meal,so not 5-6 bad fastfood junks, just 1 well done meal! enjoy! :-)

Yeah! :) I really like this direction you took. But it’s not 100% vegan and anti-corporate, right? I mean, Jack Daniels is one of the sonsors ;)

I waited for this one! ;-)
Well, if you see our poster many people would say: “WTF, such a nice lineup, cool bigger bands, great DIY bands, BUT…thats totally commercial, they just want to make tons of money with all these sponsorships”! :-)

But, take a look behind our scenes and our work! its 100% impossible to book this lineup without any help from other sponsors! i have the choice to put every single pizza-service around to give 30 euro or ask 3-4 friends in bigger companies and cooperate with them! and its 100% impossible without any sponsorships! now you’ll tell me…”but the Fluff and some other ones are doing this without…”! :-)

Maybe True, and also I don’t care if festivals got sponsorships or nut, but just to let people know that we do not make tons of euros! We all got other real jobs to make our money! We love NN and we love doing something special! also you have to see that were based in Germany! we can make this festival in Thailand or Czech or someone else without much sponsorships, because everything is much cheaper there! We also cannot sell our beer or water for 1 or 2 Euros, nobody can do this in Germany! thats not our choice, its just a given fact due the economy!

and also NN was never a vegan or straight edge festival, also never a political event! our main focus was and will be bands & music! Animal rights & political topics are coming automatically with bands & visitors and thats great! but our first thought is organizing a great day with great music and great hangouts!

Fair enough. I hope you’ll get a box or two full of tasty whisky, haha! ;)

Speaking of different countries, what countries do your attendees come from?

Of course, maybe ill send you a bottle! ;-)

Right now a lot people from France & Swiss are attending, cause were very close the these boarders!

But also people from Italy, Portugal, UK, Luxemburg, Belgium, Netherlands, Spain and so on will come like in the past!

Do you have a travel advice for this year’s event?

Yeah, people from europe can travel directly to Karlsruhe by train,very easy and many train connections available! also direct trains! our closest airport is “Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden/Söllingen”! its about 35km away from Karlsruhe!

Also we worked out an special “deal” @ A&O Hostel directly at the Maintrainstation in Karlsruhe! More Facts can be found on our homepage!

All other informations can be find here.

How many people are expected to attend this time? How many attended last year?

Last Year ca. 1300 People visited our fest! We hope for the same or more of course! Lineup would worth it i think! ;-)

Do you see the potential to expand this even further in the future?

Of course there is potential, but thats not our main focus! i think were still in the beginnings! Especially after moving from Durmersheim to Karlsruhe and taking entrance-fee! that was a big move for us, I think well see what happens soon. Right now were happy with our small festival! We love it! That’s our passion!

So, summing it up, why people should come? :)

Easy to answer! :-) NN was and is a pretty Special One! Well every Festivals tells that! But i think its worth to visit cause NN is so Special unspecial!;-) our fest was and will ever be focused on the Bands and Music! We have one Special meal, 1-2 tables with informations about Animal rights and political activists! And thats it! I don’t like overloaded Festivals/Shows with Tons of “extra stuff” with “some” Bands beside! Think thats te Special mixture of New Noise! New Noise is a Music Festival! But also our Spot is really Special! You have to See it that you can feel what i mean! Whatever, if people might come this year, feel free, be your Self and enjoy the Bands and some stuff around! Karlsruhe is also worth for a Weekend Trip! Old famous castles and some more nice sights are waiting! Great green Parks and some more…

Tempting… :)

Lucas, thanks so much for your time! I bet you’ll be extra proud of hosting this year’s party! Thanks for your answers!

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