TIME TO ROCK 2023 – Second Full Day (Festival Blog)

TIME TO ROCK 2023 - Second Full Day (Festival Blog)
TIME TO ROCK 2023 – Second Full Day

And now we begin day #3 at Time To Rock Festival 2023. If you’ve not read any of my other daily blogs (there are 3), then you may wish to start there. Especially if you’re looking for more of an overview of the festival maybe in conjunction with considerations of attendance in 2024?

Also, as mentioned, Friday, July 7th I split into two different blogs. Just so it was not War & Peace in length. Friday was the pre-party day with only one stage and mostly Swedish bands. Now as we get fully underway and into the heavy action of all 3 stages and therefore triple the bands, I’m going to switch my presentation. I will not go into any super depth regarding the bands here today, just a few brief highlights or words for each. Otherwise, this would take months to write and longer to read! In conjunction with this daily overview, I will publish some “Spotlight” set reviews of some of my top bands today, tomorrow and over the entire festival. In those will I write more details of that specific gig/set.

Tygers Of Pad Thai

Sunday at Time To Rock began with the day’s headliner IMO. Why were Tygers Of Pan Tang on so early is a complete mystery to me. They sounded so great today as every time I’ve seen them. Their setlist choices covered the entire catalogue from 1980 debut Wildcat all the way up to the recent Bloodlines. Strangely enough to me, “Hellbound” did not make its way into the set. However a long time absentee, “Paris By Air” surfaced as the third song played. Due to an amusing auto-correct made by a friend a few months ago, I can’t help referring to them as The Tygers Of Pad Thai. I smiled to myself, in part due to this little joke but mostly enjoying the show. A fantastic band, check out their new album Bloodlines and if you feel inclined, my Spotlight review of their set today. TYGERS OF PAN TANG – Time To Rock 2023 (Spotlight Blog).

The Hard Work Behind the Scenes

As the Tygers wrapped up, I took a moment to look around at my surroundings. Here I am at a music festival in Sweden. My real “happy place” on earth. A production such as this event has so very much that goes into it behind the scenes. I thought back to my brief conversation with Martin yesterday. He was up and on the go at 6am today, heading to Malmo to pick up more gear needed for tonight’s main act. Nobody sees that kind of thing from all those amazing folks behind the facade.

Brothers Of Metal

Big “ups” to Brothers Of Metal for stepping into the batter’s box a week ago. They signed on to fill in for Sham 69, who were unable to make it. Some folks on the socials were complaining about the replacement I saw. Nice to see that you think you can run the festival and do a better job? Be thankful a band was able to jump in! OMG, there are like 30 Viking-looking people on stage! Well, it seemed like 30 but in reality only about 8. Lots of stage activity, running around and jumping etc. Great fun to attempt to capture on photo. The vocals were shared between the girl, the big guy and another guy. There were three guitarists and a bassist. Bit of overkill there, no? A fair bit of fun, but not super my thing. It’s the operatic type choruses that don’t grab me….they all sound the same🤷🏻‍♂️. My cohort, MetalMike71 however loved the show and here’s his spotlight review: BROTHERS OF METAL – Time To Rock 2023 (Spotlight Blog). Nevertheless enjoyable and great that they stepped in to save the day when British punkers Sham 69 withdrew a couple of weeks ago or less.

The Heat Is On

The heat already issued a death contract out on me and was performing a slow painful assassination! Fuck, it’s hot!

Backstreet Crawlers

Also not really my preferred style. This to me was “Old Man’s Blues”. Some laid-back beer-drinking tunes you’d expect to hear at a Ribfest here in Canada. Played well, just not my cup of tea, so I didn’t stay long and headed to the Rocknytt Stage.


Up next on the small stage was some Swedish power metal from Tungsten. All in all, I found it ok, but to me was all very samey sounding. Then again I’m not huge on European power metal. A few bands break in like HammerFall and Bloodbound but that’s about it. The bassist was fun to capture with some funny facial expressions.


I’ve worked hard and it’s bitch-ass hot out, I deserve a break! Meeting up with my friend Anders in the crowd at Tungsten, we headed for a beer and the solace of the sun-blocking beer tent! I didn’t have even one beer yesterday, Man was I being good…lol. Today however was a bit of a low spot for me, not preferring the bands this afternoon. I did not foresee this changing with the next act.

Molly Hatchet

There was some “Tech delay” announcement made, at least I think that was the gist. But it wasn’t too long before we got going. I quickly picked off how fun Molly Hatchet were to shoot with the guitarist being very facial. He seems genuinely happy and would not stop throwing out guitar pics! The singer was just a young guy, who sounded quite good, though clearly not original. In fact, I was told that none of them are original members. There goes my friggin’ camera malfunction again! At least once or more times per band shoot. Am I shooting too fast? Does it not like vertical pics? WTF? Was ok tunes, but with the frustrations of the gear, I want a beer in the shade!! Afterall, it costs me a fuckton to get here, so why not enjoy as well😁

Who’s The Boss?

Ross, that’s who! Ross the Boss, guitarist probably most associated with Manowar was delayed as we waited for Molly Hatchet. A sea of orange photo vests all milled about the photo pit entrance (and I noted that no one looked like candy corn….just me on day #1🤣). Naturally, Manowar is a classic Heavy Metal band, but I’m not super into them myself. Plus after the 3 photo songs, it was a hard push over to the small stage during the time schedule conflicts.

Saphire? Jewel Of The Nile?

Now, this Swedish band I’d seen some years ago at Sweden Rock Festival. But I didn’t know them back then and didn’t catch the whole thing. Missing the first three songs due to the schedule conflict the orange vesters jumped into the stage front pit at the outset of song #4. Wow, this sounds incredible….wait, this is my friend Michael Laine doing this sound too I think! Of course, all the stage talk was in Swedish, we are after all in Sweden! Wait, English: “We have t-shirts over there for 250 crowns“🤣. I remained for the entire Saffire set, what a great show! Check out my spotlight review for more details: SAFFIRE – Time To Rock 2023 (Spotlight Blog).

Garbage Detail

If I didn’t say already before, the grounds here are nearly spotless. The volunteers do a fantastic job of picking up waste and fixing garbages. But also a huge credit goes to the concertgoers. They are not really littering at all even. So nice to see and again something over Sweden Rock Festival which, while relatively clean could still use improvement. Maybe it shows that patrons have more respect for this event.

Disneyland After Dark

I knew this would be fun to capture on film, hope the shots turned out! D-A-D are always so much fun on stage. And there’s a lot of great music in their catalogue as well since they began back in ’82. The usual D-A-D productions were in full force i.e.: drummer Laust seated under a massive merry-go-round. Too short to get a good capture😢. Bassist Stig in flashy gold with a variety of different and unique 2-string basses. Will we hear my current favourite song tonight, “Written In Water“? Probably not, unfortunately. And just as unfortunately we did get “Riding With Sue” featuring Stig on vocals. Never liked this one, and so the drift was in play.

Burger Time

Dictated by hunger (and “Riding With Sue“), I drifted away from D-A-D for a burger. Oh my God was it ever gross! The meat was colder than my ex-girlfriend! My biggest negative at Time To Rock has been food. Really need better food options IMO….like Casey’s.

Well, at least the stomach had changed tone now. From hungry rumble to puky gurgle! I headed off for the solace of the press tent. As I walked that way, I ended up walking next to Mr. Brian Tatler, guitarist of Diamond Head and now Saxon as well. We had a brief chat as I passed on accolades of last night’s show and anticipation of Saxon tomorrow. “It’s only my second gig with them!” He says! Cool.

After a sit-down, going over notes and looking at some captures it was back out to check on progress for Masterplan. “Sleeping My Day Away” could be heard over on the main stage, so that must be the end of D-A-D.


I really enjoy some of Masterplan‘s output. But the trouble is once we get 4 or 5 songs in, I’ve lost track. They all sound very similar by that point to me. But standalone, they’re great. I’d seen them once before at Sweden Rock Festival but I really didn’t remember it much. Damn getting old! Also, I see a lot of bands, hear a lot of music so maybe that causes the blending together in my head. In any case, Mr. Roland Grapow was quite funny on stage. I think it was after the second song, but definitely early on in the set, he took a tuning moment. “I feel so important“, he smiled. “I’m my own roadie. I have only one guitar, hope nothing breaks“! Rick Altzi is an incredible vocalist and he was displaying that once again on stage today. My notes report he was “on fire“. But ultimately, I only watched about three-quarters of the set before I needed to sit again….damn getting old!

Don’t Get Burnt

Emerging from the press tent, I made my way to the big stage for KK’s Priest. I loved KK in Judas Priest. I don’t love the KK’s Priest album. The newest single, however, is lightning, so I’m hopeful for the new album. The collection of orange vesters were given some special instructions for this show. Due to too much pyro and concern for our safety (aw, thanks😁) we would not shoot the first 2 songs. Songs 3 and 5 were our targets with the latter half of song four thrown in for good measure. Yes, we would have to clear the pit for the first half of song four. Since these directions were delivered in Swedish, all this info arrived by way of orange-decked-out Effie‘s translation. Or else I would have gotten burnt by more than the sun here! Thanks, Effie!

KK’s Delay

And we waited and waited some more. They were now at least 45 minutes late. Then it was an hour. Has Axl Rose joined the band? Finally, it was go time! But more translations supplied that due to the delay, the band was dropping song 4, so we would have songs 3 and 4 (which was formerly 5). Two classic Priest songs, “The Ripper” And “Night Crawler“, we got to shoot which was fine for me! I became a little chilly and so after “Sermons Of The Sinner“, I retrieved my sweater from the press tent.

Returning to hear “Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)” I chuckled to myself. He’s doing a cover song of a cover song🤣. Overall, the set was a big production with lots of fireflash, pyro and smoke bombs. The stage had been extended and was deeper than yesterday. These were the parts that Martin had to pick up early this morning. There was also a ramp and platform on either side of the stage which the guitarists used frequently. There were, of course, Judas Priest songs in the setlist. A lot of Judas Priest songs. And I’ll probably get flak on this point as I’ve seen tons praising him, but as we knew from Jugulator, Ripper is no Halford. I may be in the minority but I thought he sounded terrible on the Priest songs. But maybe I’m only hearing Halford in my head. After a brief respite, they came back on stage. “I know we went on late, but can we do one more?” was the question poised ahead of “Raise Your Fists“.

Above and Beyond

With the delays and the chill I was feeling, I was done for the day. I closed up shop and took no photos of Dream Evil nor Tryptikon doing Celtic Frost. KK killed me🤣. I watched 2 or 3 songs of Dream Evil (none of which were “Book Of Heavy Metal“😢) before moving to Celtic Frost. With the exact same band as yesterday’s Hellhammer and the same “hard to stomach” vocals, I was not loving it. Thankfully the rest of my crew was in the same school of thought and we retired to the cabin.

With the at least 1 hour delay for KK, which by the way was because they couldn’t get their TV screens to work! What? We waited for that! There wasn’t even a big production on them. Certainly, nothing engaging and we didn’t need to be Axl Rose-d for that! This now meant that many folks would miss the last bus back to their surrounding area hotels. Time To Rock attempted to get a hold of the bus company to request late service. But let’s face it we’re talking about 1 am on a Sunday night! In the end, a group of Time To Rock staff who had already worked several long days in a row, remained on duty to personally drive ANY festival goer home that had missed the last bus. That’s a level of dedication and care for their patrons that bears no comparison. The fact that Time To Rock did that shows and proves what this festival is all about. The famliness, long crowded out of SRF is alive and well in Knislinge. Outstanding service!

Goodnight Again Time To Rock

What another awesome day! So many great bands today and such fun capturing the photos…. hopefully, they’re not total shit! As with yesterday, I didn’t get to hang out with my friends very much, but I at least got in a beer with Anders.

For now, it’s home to rest these weary feet and get some sleep for day #4!


Follow along with all of my coverage here: Time To Rock Festival 2023 Full Coverage page.


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