Photo by Daisuke Sakai@FYD.Inc
Howl at the Tune
Man with a Mission are a band who love theatrics, as the wolf heads attest, so the giant wolf maw dominating the Green Stage promised great things to come as the final soundcheck took place at the Green Stage. The band took to the stage while a digital voice chanted the band name over the PA, and as the open strains of “Get Off of My Way” began, the huge jaw opened to reveal our company of lupine rap-rockers. Suspended behind them were the letters MWAM pulsing in bright flashing lights. A broody opening with a funky bit of guitar with an added splash of “wah-wah” morphed into rap and crescendoed into siren squeals. “Database” followed on and it was here where the band took the festival by the horns and wrangled it into a moshing frenzy. The heavy verse reminiscent of Rage Against the Machine was followed by a catchy chorus with great progressions and sing-a-long sections that showed the band off at their best. Halfway through DJ Santa Monica ran out from behind his decks and walked down the side of the side to get the massive crowd waving their arms from side to side in time with him. Later on in the set he caused mayhem by launching himself into the crowd.
It felt that with each track the band raised the bar on energy and sound. “Give it Away” sounded massive with it’s synth organ backing, but by the time the final song “Emotions” rocked up with its drum’n bass backing the wolves had been kicking some serious ass. “Emotions” is the kind of song that could take you through the whole Man With A Mission oeuvre in one tune – atmospheric lead-ins, crunchy guitar riffs and explosive choruses that deal out stadium-sized euphoria. Man With A Mission are a band whose style borrows from other sounds, but mashed together creates fierce music coupled with uplifting melodies that prove a winning formula. On a day when a good dose of rock was sorely lacking elsewhere on the bill, Man With A Mission proudly howled some tunes that flew the flag for Japanese rock.