WELCOME TO OUR TEMPLE OF LOVE !
"I'm Going Down To The Darklands, Cos I Know Where The Darklands Are ..."
Trad Goth, Industrial, EBM, Darkwave, FuturePop, etc etc If any of these are 'Your Thing' then there will probably be something to interest you here !?!
I like all of the above. One thing generally tends to lead you onto another ... Punk Rock led to the discovery of Iggy & The Velvets. Punk then spewed towards Goth via Siouxsie and the likes of Bauhaus and The Sisters. EBM blasted along and every other sub genre soon followed !!! .............
This type of music holds a massive place in the hearts of many. Both great to listen to AND dance to, many Club Nights continue to fill their Dancefloors by mixing all of the aforementioned styles.
Is it a case of once a 'Goth', always a 'Goth' at heart ?????
Ten Of My Current Most Listened To CD's (In No Particular Order ...)
Nitzer Ebb - Body Of Work
Siouxsie & The Banshees - Juju
The Cure - Pornography
Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures
Front 242 - Front By Front
The Sisters Of Mercy - First And Last And Always
Depeche Mode - Violator
VNV Nation - Empires
The Sisters Of Mercy - Floodland
Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
We have 3 other Contributors to The Temple Of Love apart from myself.
WHITBY GOTH WEEKEND
THE JESUS AND MARY CHAINThe Forum, London.11-03-16.
Could THe Mary Chain live up to the legend ..... Of course they could.The lights dim, the Band saunter on, and it's straight into 'April Skies' ; immediately the crowd are jumping.It's a mix of old and young fans that gather tonight - lots more youngsters than I had imagined would be there.Jim looks good, and his voice sounds fantastic.William lurks back in the shadows, and from a distance could well be Robert Simth !!The Mary Chain always had great tunes beneath the feedback, and tonight they play them in spades.It's total controlled power - an epic sound that builds and builds.'Some Candy Talking' is superb, and 'Happy When It Rains' shines.Jim seems genuinely surprised by the warmth of the audience reaction, and it's a frenzy near the front throughout.The Set flies by culminating in a crunching version of 'Reverence' - I wanna die like Jesus Christ ....
They return for what can only be described as a sensational encore - the drum beat signals the start to 'Just Like Honey' and we move through to 'Never Understand' - surely a seminal rock song if ever there was one.The final song played is the last song from PsychoCandy - and 'It's So Hard' is given the full treatment.I had hoped they would live up to expectations - people I know who saw them last year were raving about them - and tonight they more than lived up to my expectations.I saw them back in the day and they blew me away.Tonight they blew me away again.Long live The Jesus And Mary Chain.A.W.
Interview with Heida from Icelandic Band HELLVAR (March 2015).
How and when did Hellvar get together ?Hellvar was formed in Berlin by me, Heiða, and multi-instrumentalist Elvar, but we were living in Berlin for a year from 2004-2005 to study Philosophy at a local University. We had both been in various bands together and apart for years before, but we had decided to put musical career on hold to focus on the studies, and then it turned out we just couldn't keep away from it. First formation was a drum-machine, and then Heiða and Elvar taking turns playing bass and electric guitar with Heiða singing. Half of the first album was recorded in our living-room in Berlin. This explains the How and the When, and I even added a Why? Why music? Oh, because you can't not do it, even when your mind is set on other things.Had you been involved in music before Hellvar ?My first engagement was learning to play guitar at home from the age 13 and onward. I came home from school and quickly did my homework so I could spend the rest of the afternoon and evening playing. I only started writing my own songs at the age of 16, when I got my own guitar from my parents. Before that it was learning Bowie-songs, Beatles-songs, Smiths, Cure, U2..... When I came across chords to any song I knew I tried playing it. Led Zeppelin also took up a big part of a year for me. Home from school, homework, and Baby I'm gonna leave you for 5 hours was a routine I stuck to religiously. Hahaha. First band I was in was also at 16, and I was in a few garage-bands from 16 to 23. One of the bands was in Marseille, France, when I lived there for a year. I also started making lyrics in English when I lived in France and was performing my troubadour-stuff there. I wanted people to understand my lyrics, but didn't know enough french at the time to compose in french. No-one understands Icelandic so that was futile. Some professional guys, heros in my opinion at the time, heard me sing and play in a gig in Reykjavík in 1994 and called me and offered me a singing-job in a band they had just formed called Unun. (means Pleasure in Icelandic). I was in Unun until 2000, played around Europe, and then I did my first solo-album and have been writing and releasing my music ever since. At the moment I am working on a solo-album of mine, probably gonna be some low-fi, electro/acoustic experimental album. Very exciting. Hellvar is working on new material too, and then I am in this electro-duet called Ruddinn, with a guy called Bertel. We have done one album together under the name and we just finished recording a new one, out late this summer.To someone who has never heard of you, how would you describe your music and who are your main influences ?Hellvar is very much like mixing water with olive-oil. You can shake it all you want and it still won't blend, but if you add some colouring to the mix it will make great patterns. One is often influenced by the music one was listening to in one's teenage years, I mean, those are the roots and then life experience and newer influences and the weather and politics and whatever comes on top of that, like filters and layers. Elvar and I don't really share roots but the layers and the filters and where we stand on things are very similar. Whereas he comes from metal and punk I come from seventies and indie/alternative rock and then a bit later goth. We are not the teenagers we were once and I have even developed taste for some metal and he likes some of the mid-seventies soft shit I have been pushing on him at the house. The thing is we are both music-lovers and we have always been. We are not through with discovering stuff and try to broaden our musical horizon all the time. Hellvar incorporates our roots as well as our love of rock and we are not afraid to take unexpected detours into whatever genres of music we feel necessary in the songs. If you need me to put labels on the music I would go with alternative, goth, shoe-gaze, punk-rock.What inspires your lyrics ?Weather, politics, philosophy, injustice, films, books, artists, people, darkness, melancholia, depression, love, confusion, adventures, funny animal videos on the internet....How long can this interview be? I can go on for a while... restaurants, weirdness, conversations, parties, art-galleries, night-time, tea-drinking, clowns. Oh you want me to stop? Ok, I'll stop.How is the music scene in Iceland ?It's brimming with life. There is nothing to do in Iceland in the wintertime but watch TV or make art. The people who are TV-watchers have no time to do art. Artists have no time to watch TV. It's basically too cold and shitty out to go and do anything. I do see a lot of brave tourists who come in the wintertime and go hiking and mountain-climbing or whatever. But for them this is an adventure, and they can leave Iceland after their adventure is finished. It is different when you can't leave. I started doing music because of my general lack of enthusiasm with TV and sports and I think those are the reasons that kept me going. That, and the I can't not do music. The economical crisis has also dragged people out of their self-made cages and made them realize that life is only what you make of it, and so we are seeing and hearing a lot of people who always wanted to make music or paint or write books coming out in the open with that now. I love that. Creativity is not something you can buy. Imagination beats all other forms of entertainment I have come across.You DJ on Icelandic Radio, yes .....Yes, indeed. I have a radio-show on Sunday-nights. I play Icelandic music only, underground and upcoming artists mixed with more established ones. I love finding stuff and introducing it to radio-listeners. I have always had this enthusiasm about bands I like when I hear them for the first time. I really believe the right song can sometime save a day, or a night. I take great pleasure in making my radio-program, as it is all about introducing people to stuff that deserves more attention.What interests do you have outside of music ?Travelling, people, arts, love, books, adventures, good food. I would gladly combine all of those: Travelling the world with artistic people I love, going on adventures, eating good food and coming home to make art and write books about it.You recently did a short tour of England ; how did that go ?I'm happy Hellvar finally got a chance to play in England. I think we are very influenced by English artists, a few of my favourite being Cocteau Twins, The Cure, P.J.Harvey and David Bowie, and a few of Elvar's being Mike Oldfield, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, King Crimson and Paradise Lost. Hellvar has played in Germany many times, and in the U.S. and we even managed a trip to Beijing a few years back. We loved to get the reaction from the U.K. audience, as all nations respond differently to music. We were very pleasantly surprised that England took us so well. We want to come again in the autumn, and try out new material we have been stacking up.
SEPTEMBEAR FEST 2015.A 12 hour Event taking place at The Athletic Club, Kettering on Sat. 19th September '15 in aid of The Stroke association.Bands confirmed so far include ; The Sex Pissed Dolls, Defy All Reason, The Loose Coots, Dem Urban Foxes, The Abrahams, Spucktute, TenplusOne, The Vacants.Tickets on sale soon via WebSite ; www.septembearfest.co.uk
LIVERPOOL PSYCH FESTIVALCamp & Furnace.26 & 27 Sept. '14
"We came, we saw, we psyched ...." - Wow, what an extraordinary 2 days it was in Liverpool.Now in it's third year, The Liverpool International Festival Of Psychedelia - to give it it's full name - is an extravagenza of all things psych, and then some.It's difficult to know where to start - the Venue is perfect ; an old warehouse only about a mile or so walk from the City Centre (or a fiver in a taxi). You can exchange your ticket for a wristband from about 1pm on the Friday, and the doors - or rather the gates - open about three ; this runs a bit late but nearly everything else at this superbly organized Event runs to schedule. This is helpful as there are 3 Stages, each within easy reach of the other, and with a bit of advanced planning you can end up seeing up to 20+ Bands over the two days !!! ... or, as a friend of mine often does at these type of Events - you can psych out, chat, drink and just see a couple of Bands. A brilliant weekend is had either way - the choice is yours.OK - a tough task being the first Band on, but in the smallest of the 3 Venues (The Blade Factory) Purple Heart Parade, quickly followed by the excellent Formes - "This is our Spike Island" - kick things off in style. Already I was wondering why I hadn't been to this Festival before ....Hopes were high for ex Spacemen 3 legend Pete Bassman, but he suffered some tech problems and appeared a bit subdued.The outside area is a great place to mingle and grab some food. After a brief respite, I found myself in Camp for Holy Wave, and they were brilliant. Wave on wave of Texan psych indeed. A friend had recommended them to me, and I would strongly advise you to check them out. Def. one of my top 5 highlights of the whole weekend.We were now on a roll, and Spectres continued in a great vein. Moody and magnificent. I had intended to only see the start of their Set, but ended up staying for all of it. A quick dash over to Furnace enabled me to catch some of Wolf People - and they were brilliant.Friday was turning into a superb day of music, and there was loads more to come yet ....
When you get chance between Bands, upstairs above Blade Factory is the Psych Cinema and well stocked Merch Stall. Tees, CDs, Vinyl and - amazingly - Bands releasing stuff on tape !!But I had a schedule to keep, and it was the Sonic Cathedral Showcase in Camp. The Vacant Lots, The Early Years and Younghusband all had the crowd enthralled. I would have to just pick The Vacant Lots as my favs.By now it was nearly midnight ; time for some chilli, cheese and chips ....Next came a major, major clash ; Suuns were a def. on my list, until the friend who had strongly advised me to see Holy Wave raved about Klaus Johann Grobe .....I chose Mr Grobe in the Blade Factory - probably my favourite of the 3 Venues used due to it's intimacy.Klaus turned out to be a good choice, and his very enjoyable Set brought day one to an end to me. My battery was now flat ; I'd managed to see 11 Bands, and the lure of bed was more than the lure of Zombie Zombie.It's always good to pace yourself .... so I was up at a reasonable hour on Sunday morning, and joined a fair number of others for the early 1.15pm start.The Glass Moths were calling ; one of the Band was wearing a JIm Morrison Tee Shirt, and they most definately had a Doors feel about them.French Band Sudden Death Of A Star were next on my list - and they had a whiff of The Velvets about them. There are a lot worse ways of spending a Sunday lunchtime !!One of the strengths of this Festival is the variety of Bands that come under the 'Psych' banner - the Bands definately don't all sound the same.Proving the point were Strange Collective who had a distinct Garage type sound. Again they drew a healthy crowd. All over the Festival there was a very positive friendly vibe.A great start to Sunday was about to move up three notches ; Traams. I'd been really looking forward to them, and they blew me away. Lots of energy, and a New York 1976 edge. That's right up my street !! The Album will be a must for me to buy.some of the Bands playing were really young - and WhistleJacket fitted into that category. Very Ride, very Slowdive ; they must have been listening to their Parents record collections - and their Parents were probably in the audience loving it. Superb.I can honestly say I really enjoyed virtually every Band I saw over the 2 days. The Janitors from Sweden were a bit Spacemen, a bit Mary Chain, all in black, with great vocals. All I need now is a free 5 minute run through the CDs on sale at the Merch Stand ....
Because of their name I couldn't resist Bonnacons Of Doom ; they weren't up to the name LOL.The 2 days really had flown past ; Rocket Recordings had an evening showcase in Camp, and this nearly raised the roof. Lay Llamas, Anthroprophh ( ? the loudest Band of the Festival). Hills, Teeth Of The Sea and Gnod. For me the 2 outstanding Bands from those were Hills - def. one of my top 3 of the Festival ; some very heavy rhythms - and Teeth Of The Sea.The only Band that i had really wanted to see and missed were September Girls - too much talking outside. Apparently they drew a massive crowd to the Blade Factory for their Set.One final clash - Goat or White Hills. I chose White Hills, and their brand of 'fuzzed out motorik space rock' was a perfect prescription to end Psych Festival on.Bring on the 2015 Event ......
TTOM from THEE TELEPATHShttps://www.facebook.com/TheeTelepaths
1. How would you describe Thee Telepaths music ?Psyched-up garage beat! It's a mixture of quite raw but melodic garage fuzz, lush heavily-distorted psychedelia and gratuitous noise.
2. When, and how, did you get together ?I'd moved up to Kettering from London in early 2012 and I first met our singer Dean a couple of months later through our ladies, round at my house. By the end of that night we were blind drunk playing guitars and singing. He brought in Tim, our bass player, a couple of weeks later having played with him a previous band. We got a local drummer through an ad and played a few gigs as The Abattoir Blues doing mainly covers but of things like early Talking Heads, the Modern Lovers, The Stooges and the Velvets and garage/psych started creeping into what we were doing with things like Billy Childish and the 13th Floor Elevators. The move in that direction came mainly via Tim I think although we were both big fuzz fans and Dean was an eager convert. In the autumn of 2013, our drummer quit to focus on his other group, so the three of us holed up with a drum machine in my basement and started experimenting with some new things in a more psych direction, bringing electronic sounds into things and changing our name to Thee Telepaths. Vincent, an old friend of mine that I've been playing in bands with on and off since we were kids, liked what he was hearing and his band were breaking up at the time so we nabbed him, which was great as I had him in mind early on but he hadn't been available when we originally got the group together. This was in late December last year.
3. What are your 3 favourite Albums of All-Time ?That changes all the time! I like a lot of things that have nothing to do with what we do as a band, but in the context of what it is that we are doing it would include "Fun House" by the Stooges, "White Light/White Heat" by the Velvet Underground, and "Tago Mago" by Can although that really doesn't seem to cover it off. Can I sneak "Easter Everywhere" by the 13th Floor Elevators in there as well? I could talk all day about by Faust, the MC5, Loop, Suicide, Spacemen 3, Love, Serge Gainsbourg, and all the Nuggets and Pebbles comps... People knock digital, but there's so much great music that's been made - we're very lucky that so much of it has been made available again.
4. Favourite drink ?Red wine. I drink a lot of Rioja, although after a couple of pints of it it has the same effect on me as I suspect Rohypnol would.
5. If you could play a Gig anywhere in the world, where would it be and which other 2 Bands would be on the line-up ?The Grande Ballroom in Detroit, sometime in mid-'68, with The Stooges and the MC5. That was easy.
6. Top 3 songs ever ....
A bit like the albums, it's a toughie this, so again in the context of what it is we do, I'd say "Primitive" by the Groupies would be in any Top 3 on any given day. A lot of people will know the version that the Cramps did on their Psychedelic Jungle LP. "Looking at You" by the MC5 always does it for me (original single or the version on Back in the USA), and I couldn't do time on a desert island without "I'm Five Years Ahead of My Time" by The Third Bardo.
7. If you could get one Musician to guest on your Album, who would it be ?
Robert Hampson from Loop, no contest. With that band he brought fuzz to a competely new level.
8. Fantasy date for a night outI wouldn't be allowed out on a fantasy date... Can I do fantasy night out drinking instead? Sterling Morrison of the Velvet Underground would win that hands down, although sadly he's no longer with us. Apart from his awe-inspiring playing, after being the sole constant in what was arguably the single most influential band that has so far existed he spent time as a tugboat captain and as an English lecturer, and was a mean raconteur as well, apparently.
CTRL ALT FEST DELETE.Kettering.15-16-17 August '14.
"People, people, people - get involved. Play your guitar, do your fanzines, take photos, be involved. Don't just be part of the audience, participate ; live it."The above is a great quote from The UK Subs frontman and total Punk Legend Charlie Harper, and the peoiple of Kettering certainly did that in style .....For months and months we were massively looking forward to the one weekend in Mid-August 2014 when Kettering would be at the epicentre of the Alternative Universe !!Yes - the incredible all singing all dancing Alt-Fest was coming to town !!!Until with 2 weeks to go the whole thing was cancelled - we were to be denied the sight of Marilyn Manson popping into Kettering Boots to buy some shampoo ....What to do ??Well, a few very enterprising people didn't just sit around moaning - in an incredibly short time period they created Ctrl Alt Fest Delete ; a free Event primarily based at The Old Market Inn and The Prince Of Wales.Over 3 afternoons and nights both the Bands and those who attended proved that out of disaster it is possible to create something incredible.For many surely the highlight was The Cureheads playing to a packed Prince Of Wales on the friday night. Epic Cure songs had everyone spellbound and reliving memories of years gone by - it's easy to forget just how superb songs like 'A Forest' really are.The range of Bands playing covered Goth, Rock, Metal and all things Alternative - along with a great line-up of DJs including Bod and Armand.There was even a picnic on the Sunday afternoon and a jam/open mic session.Sunday saw a storming line-up at The Prince, with Myths putting in a fine Set - later followed by Zeitgeist Zero and to finish the whole Festival the ear-bursting Black Acid Souls.And then we danced as the dj played 'The Beautiful People' ... oh the irony ...Marilyn Manson might never set foot on the soil of Kettering, but surely Ctrl Alt Fest Delete will return in 2015 !!!!Andy Webster.
The word legend is vastly overused within music, but when it comes to the one and only Charlie Harper it is THE only word to use.Charlie has been front man of The UK Subs for more years than he would care to remember. The number of live Gigs they have played is incredible - many times doing over 200 Gigs a year.Charlie is now 70 years young, and still going strong - at least he's got the number of times The Subs play live down to about a hundred a year now !!!Everyone you meet who knows the guy says what a genuine lovely man he is - and having been lucky enough to stay at the same b and b as him and his delightful wife Yuko at the recent Rebellion Festival I can only echo those words.He always has time for a chat and is both very interesting and interested in what you are doing.He gives his fans incredible access in that he always hangs around the Merch Stall or bar and is more than happy to sign anything that is put in front of him.The other amazing thing is that live The Subs are probably now better than ever !!!! Incredible.Charlie - we salute you - may you keep on rocking for many, many years to come ........
THTHEATRE OF HATE.Birmingham Institute.14.12.13.
Way back when, myself and a friend ventured to Hammersmith Palais to see Theatre Of Hate. They were magnificent that night, and the same can be said of tonight.Three of the original five are onstage in Birmingham, and the total power remains. Kirks voice has always been one of the most distinctive in rock, and it still sends shivers down the spine.After his physical health problems of recent years, his passion and energy levels are amazing.This truly is his life.The songs stand up after all these years ; so many classics that the crowd know word for word ; ''Legion', 'Original Sin', 'Propaganda' all flow seamlessly.Stan Stammers on bass and Danny on drums provide such an engine for the Band. John on sax just tops the whole thing off.It goes without saying that 'Do You Believe In The Westworld ?' is a highlight amoungst many highlights.The reaction from the crowd is unrelenting, and the Band return for a final 'Solution' - then they depart, before hanging around in the bar area afterwards - happy to chat to anyone and sign whatever is put in front of them.Truly a magical night with a magical Band.FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM + THE MISSION.Brixton Academy.18.12.13.After a few welcome refreshments in The Beehive we head to The Academy at about 7pm. The Mission have headlined the other 3 dates on this Co-Headlining Tour, but tonight they are first on at 7.30pm.After the dambusters theme, Wayne and Co. saunter onstage and launch into 'Black Cat Bone' followed by 'Beyond The Pale'. Both sound OK, but somehow for me things never really take off.I've seen The Mission many times live over the years - I went to 3 of the 4 'final' Gigs at Shepherds Bush Empire - and usually they fly live.Wayne moans about the Venue - "We'll never play here again" - and generally he seems a bit disgruntled. 'Like A Hurricane' (always a personal favourite) is a highlight, but in many ways to me they appear likea Band that's going through the motions.After a short-ish break it's time for Fields. Again I have seen them many times, and tonight I think they are magnificent.As ever, Carl McCoy looks like he's just been frozen in ice for the past 27 years !!!! The look, the clothes, the hat, the voice ....Tony Pettit is now back in the fold and this is a def. major plus.Everything just clicks into place, and the swathes of dry ice add to the atmosphere.The Set is a superb mix of songs - from 'The Watchman' to 'Chord Of Souls' to a blinding 'Celebrate'. I could go on ....Fields gave the impression of a Band at the top of their game with a bright future ahead of them ; now all we need is that new Album.FIELDS Setlist.EndemoniadaThe watchmanMoonchildChord Of SoulsLove Under WillLast Exit For The LostCelebratePsychonautAt The Gates Of Silent MemoryNew Gold DawnMourning SunA.W.
KILLING JOKE, The Zombie Hut, Corby. 14.03.2013.
Corby's new Venue had pulled off a coup by getting Killing Jokes Tour Warm-Up Gig, and once word was out the tickets disappeared in a matter of hours. Was it really 34 years ago that Killing Joke first burst onto the Scene ?? Since then they've produced so many great tracks, Albums and moments ... When the original line-up got back together in 2008 my friend Max and I enjoyed a fantastic trip to Berlin for the 2 Gigs at The Columbia Club.
There is always a good atmosphere at Gigs in Corby, and tonight there is a real sense of expectation in the air as at about 9.15pm the Band hit the - very - small Stage. An opening salvo of 'Turn To Red', 'Wardance' and 'Requiem' have the packed crowd moving as one.
It's superb to see Killing Joke in a small Club - there is a brutal, physical intensity about them. The music is unrelenting, and you can feel the energy onstage. It's surreal to think that the combined age of the original four members must come in somewhere between 210 - 220 - Hey, we'll excuse Reza from the count !! I was very pleased to hear both 'Tension' and 'Follow The Leaders' played, and pretty early in the Set we get 'Love Like Blood' - which Jaz dedicates to Raven. All truly great Bands have a great frontman - and they don't come much better than Jaz. It's the madness in his eyes ..........
Killing Joke look like they are really enjoying playing such an intimate Venue, and the Set flies by with no lull at all. 'Eighties' and 'Money Is Not Our God' are fantastic, and a rousing 'Pandemonium' brings things to a close. The crowd need a few minutes to catch their breath - you can see the sweat and feel the heat.
Soon The Joke reappear and manage to squeeze in 'The Great Cull' and a blistering 'Pssyche' before the curfew. A totally memorable night, and one that the people of Corby will remember for a long time.
Turn To Red. Wardance. Requiem. Tension. European Super State. Follow The Leaders. Love Like Blood. The Beautiful Dead. This World Hell. Empire Song. Chop-Chop. Sun Goes Down. Eighties. Corporate Elect. Money Is Not Our God. Whiteout. Asteroid. The Wait. Pandemonium. Encores. The Great Cull. Pssyche.
THE ZOMBIE HUT, CORBY
Corby has a great new Rock Venue that has just opened in March '13 ; THE ZOMBIE HUT. Check out the WebSite for Band Listings ...
SCIENCE MADE US ROBOTS Interview.
Andy caught up with Chris from the Band in March 2013.
When did Science Made Us Robots form, and how did you get together ?
We formed this time last year. Vocalist/Drummer Paul and Guitarist/Vocalist Fin have known each other since childhood and have had a few Banda between them over the years. I've known Paul for some time now ; last Spring he approached me asking if they could play at a Gig that I was promoting. I accepted. In short they smacked it and I was really impressed. Within a week of that Gig their bassist quit, so Paul asked me if I knew anyone who might be up for it. My answer ; "Yeah - me !!" Since then we've done a stack of Gigs - including the New Band Stage at Rebellion Festival - and made the decision to add a second guitarist ; enter stage right my long term pal Mr T.
How would you describe your music ?
We all have slightly different answers to this. It's fast melodic punk with singing rather than shouting, 4 chord affairs with walking basslines and mostly under 2 minutes in length. I'd liken it to early Rancid or perhaps Snuff and Bad Religion. If that is the case or not they've certainly all been influences.
Have you been in other Bands prior to SMUR ?
We're all in our 30's .... so absolutely !! Paul played in the 241ers with Johnny Filament a few years back. Mr T was in Second In Line for years and still fronts Hardcore Band Just Add Monsters. Fin has been in Monkey Bob plus a few ventures with Paul. I had a spell in Second In Line myself but have also been in The King Blues, Inline SK8 Barbies and Mighty Snortin Powder Rangers to name a few, plus I play guitar in a trashy Punk Band called No Last Words.
Do you play live often ?
Sadly not. We're geographically challenged ; based in Winchester, Newbury, SE London and Scotland !! We tend to do short Mini-Tours. We have a few Gigs coming up - so my next task is to dust off the bass and go string shopping ....
'Punk' has been around now for over 35 years ; how do you feel about the whole Scene and how things have evolved .... can music still change the world ??
One thing for sure is that music can change the individual. I like the fact that in a few years time I will probably have a new favourite Band because I will have randomly seen one and been blown away by them. Can music change the world though ? I doubt it. There's just far too many people out for themselves these days unfortunately. I believe the Scene as a whole is actually on the up, but that's speaking solely for my patch which is New Cross in SE London. All it needs is for a few more Bands to take the attitude that in these tough times we're all in it together and it will continue. Bands who do nothing to help with the Promo then ask me for money at the end of the night really are my pet hate. It's not just the Promoters job - it's all of ours. Support the Scene or lose it ....
Are you on a Label, or do you release your material independently ?
ot as yet, no. We're in the process of recording an Album at the moment and the topic of our release strategy needs to be discussed !! It's fair to say that if a Label or any distribution channels wanted to approach us then we'd welcome it.
In this illegal download age is it still possible to make a living from music ?
Interesting topic, this one. I love what Propagandhi did in allowing the world to stream their new Album prior to release then selling it. This worked on me as I brought it. More and more Bands are giving their music away for free then relying on Merch sales. However with technology comes a certain degree of over saturation. Back 'in the day' you had to be signed to have a chance of making a living from music, and accordingly be at a level of popularity and talent that prompts the Label interest in the first place. Nowadays any Tom, Dick or Harry can decide that it's their full time revenue stream. Whilst it's good to have that freedom of choice, I do know some very average Bands who have decided to do just that and simply aren't good enough to pull the numbers in order to pay their over-priced guarantees ....
Who were your early influences ?
As a bassist my biggest influence was Brian Richie of Violent Femmes. I modelled my playing style on his with the exception of his use of those ghastly plectrum things. Nowadays it's Matt Freeman from Rancid ; he is the daddy. So good he's allowed to use a plectrum, because he's him !! My writing style was shaped by 2 exceptional musicians from the South Coast Scene I was in when I started out ; namely a guitarist called Stef and a bassist named Steve Thorne.
Which current Bands do you admire ?
P>For me it's the old skool Punk Bands who after all these years still pull a crowd. I promoted Peter And The Test Tube Babies recently, and they played to a packed Pub and were jumping around like teenagers !! The likes of Inner Terrestrials, Discharge, The Vibrators, TV Smith etc also fit into that bracket, as do many others. The list is long, and that's a good thing. I really hope that when I'm their age I still have that desire to travel a good few hours with no guarantee of pay to play some spit and sawdust boozer in the middle of nowhere to one man and his dog !! If I'm still doing that in my 50's I'll class myself as winning.
If you could get one living musician to guest on your Album ......
Matt Freeman of Rancid. He could play bass instead of me, and I could go all Wayne's World on him and do thw whole 'we are not worthy' routine whilst he's at it !!
What does the next 12 months hold in store for Science Made Us Robots ?
The definates are Rebellion Festival in Blackpool in August as they've very kindly asked us back. We're set to be included on a split 7" of songs less than one minute 40 seconds long. Our Album should be out early Summer '13. Also 2 contacts of mine in Berlin and Eastern Italy have asked us to come out and do a short run in their regions. I'd like to think that will happen in the Autumn. Chuck in a few more Mini-Tours at home and that should see us safely into 2014 !!!
TINGLE IN THE NETHERLANDS
When and how did you get together ?
Owen: At the start of 2008 we were introduced on Myspace by a mutual friend (who I knew in real life). I was promoting a spoof new age CD and Helên was promoting her book of children’s poetry, as well as her adult poetry. We struck up an online friendship, and after chatting online for a few months met up in August of that year, fell in love and a few months later I moved up to Manchester. Here’s the irony: as a direct result of making a spoof new age CD (‘The Music Of Whale Farts’ by Putressence, still available from www.nerveecho.com lampooning all that vacuous, childlike guff which promises to magically transform your life I ended up meeting my life partner (and made other friends) and moved out of a town I was eager to leave, thus completely transforming my life. That’s the power of cynicism…
How would you describe your music ?
Owen: it’s slightly difficult to describe or categorise because it’s very eclectic – our musical and lyrical remit is very broad and we’re basically doing what we want rather than working within a prescribed style so there’s all sorts in there from coldwave to disco. It somehow all ends up sounding like Tingle In The Netherlands. Helên: We've described it as 'absurdist electro-pop' as we try to combine absurdist song lyrics, poetry and spoken word with synth music but we've also been described as 'wonky synth' and 'cheeky synth'. We like to spread cognitive dissonance wherever we go, so many of our tracks will have quite catchy melodies but often with dark, ominous, surreal vocals.
What are your top 3 Albums of All-Time ?
Owen: I love music too much , I couldn’t possibly select a top 3 – a top 30 maybe. But off the top of my head, ‘Trance ‘ by Chris & Cosey,’ Liaisons Dangereuses’ by Liaisons Dangereuses and ‘Jesus Egg That Wept’ by Danielle Dax are right up there. Helên: 1. 'Soul Mining' by The The 2. 'Chubbylust' by Pusbunny 3. Anything by James Last or The Muppets
If you could play a Gig anywhere in the world, where would you choose and which 2 other Bands would be on the bill ?
Owen: We’re a studio band not a gigging band; we’ve only done one gig (which went well) but we couldn’t reproduce our sound live in a way which would do it justice. But if we did, I would want to share the bill with Glass Candy and Geneva Jacuzzi as they’re two of my top favourite acts at the moment. And if one of them was not available then I’d choose Secret Society Of The Sonic Six. As to where – a street party celebrating the death of Thatcher would be good. Helên: James Last and The Muppets...doing coldwave. That would be some gig.
Top 3 songs ever.
Helên 1. 'This Is The Day' by The The 2. 'Bad Sandwich' by Pusbunny 3. 'Unfinished Sympathy' by Massive Attack Owen: again, I couldn’t possibly say which are my top 3 songs, it also depends what mood I’m in. If I had to quickly select 3 I’d say ‘Être assis ou danser’ by Liaisons Dangereuses; ‘Here Come The Harvest Buns’ by Danielle Dax and maybe ‘Brilliant Trees’ by David Sylvian . I agree with Helên, Bad Sandwich is a classic. Helên: I agree with Owen re. ‘Brilliant Trees’.
If you could get one musician to guest on your next recording, who would it be ?
Owen: A few years ago I might have said Brian Eno, but not with his recent track record! I’d choose Thighpaulsandra - I love the unselfconscious creativity, originality and eclecticism of his work, and he’s a synthesizer master. I think he’s one of the biggest musical talents in this country who doesn’t get the recognition he deserves, but then he’s British so what do you expect? If he’s not available then I’d choose Momus, his recent stuff is brilliant, really on form – I love the Sunbutler album he’s just done with Joe Howe. Helên: James Last. I'm not joking; he's a proper musician and he knows his stuff. Imagine if he did a cover of one of our tracks. That would ace.
Favourite drink ?
Owen: Hmmm – as with music, I like drink too much to have a firm favourite! Dry white wine. I’m also very partial to sherry. Helên: Tea, proper builder's tea not Earl Grey or anything like that. Milk no sugar. Or a pint of stella. Thanks.
Tingle In The Netherlands plans for the next 12 months ??
Owen: I’ve also got a solo album coming out under the provisional monicker ‘1000 Knives’, and a long awaited collaboration with Bryan Hovercraft which may finally see the light. Helên: Release our first album and maybe another EP. We also have some plans to collaborate with other musicians such as Tim Wilson aka Seedhill Bruiser aka Pusbunny, but the collaboration will be under a different name tbc.
Fantasy date for a night out ?
Owen: Helên, of course. Helên: Owen of course; so no need for a fantasy date...and then I woke up...
TINGLE IN THE NETHERLANDS debut Album 'Why Can't You Write Something Nice For A Change ? ' is released on Feb. 14th 2013.
The Album can be purchased from the Nerveecho WebSite .....
REBELLION FEST 2012.
"Punks Not Dead ..." Well certainly not for 4 days early August in Blackpool it isn't !!Whatever 'Punk' means these days can be debated until a mohican has grown out, but at Rebellion thousands of people of all ages enjoy a brilliant long weekend.The Winter Gardens is the perfect place for such an Event. Seven different Venues within host a wide variety of Bands and Performers.For the very brave, proceedings kick off at about midday with 'Bingo With Max' where the legend that is Max Splodge plays with his balls.Having checked into our friendly b&b - only about 5 minutes walk tp Punk Central - we hit The Gardens early pm on Thursday. You exchange your ticket for a WristBand, and away you pogo.It's a good idea to have a rough plan of who you want to see - an excellent free programme is provided which has very detailed info on the schedule - apparently an incredible 240 Bands perform over the 4 days.After grabbing a quick pint I head to The Arena (not as big as it sounds) Hi-Fi Spitfires at 2.15pm are lively and enjoyable, then Roughnexk Riot really kick things off. Their brand of Punk Folk has drawn a healthy crowd who soon get moving. As we file out at the end of their Set some people are already proclaiming them as "The Band Of The Weekend." Slightly Premature Punk Elation (P.P.E.). I would say !!There are plenty of stalls selling Tees, CDs etc. where you can happily wander round and get chatting to people. Typical overheard conversation ; "I can't believe it was 34 years ago that I first saw The Subs ..."I head back to The Arena for Boneyard Zombies, who were surprisingly enjoyable. Their singer def. had a bit of a Dave Vanian sound to his voice - never a bad thing.Following are 3CR. 'Hardcore' Punk, or whatever the vogue term should be. One of the Band is wearing a 'Theiving Scouse Bastard' Tee Shirt - possibly the title of one of their 'songs'. It was difficult to tell, they all sounded very similar. I gave up after about 5 numbers.My retreat is the Pub-esque Almost Acoustic (A.A.) room. Max Splodge - yes, he gets everywhere at Rebellion - is on and the room is full. It's a great place to spend an hour or so - in fact I'm sure some people spend their entire Festival there. Max doesn't disappoint ; with a friend on guitar joining him his 30 minutes (of fame) flies by and he ends proceedings with a rousing 'Two Pints Of Lager And A Packet Of Crisps ... PLEASE.'The Bizarre Bizarre Venue caters for all sorts, and early eve 5 Shitty Fingers entertain the crowds. Describing themselves as "MorrisPunk" they go down well - although not as well as The Pukes. The Pukes consist of about 16 girls and 3 guys - yes, they all manage to cram onstage. They play a Set of classic Punk covers in their own unique style, and very stylish they are. All present have a great 45 minutes.The music just keeps on coming at Rebellion - The Empress Ballroom is now open and at 10pm Snuff take things up a gear. We catch a bit of Rock N Roll Gypsies - pretty average - and Newtown Kings - SkaPunk - before returning to The Ballroom at about half past midnight for The Buzzcocks.The Cocks hit the stage and get off to a Usain Bolt like start - 'Boredom, Boredom' - but to me they then lose their way a bit. I'm starting to feel a bit tired when they play 'Promises' and from there until the finish it's just a fantastic run of great songs.Quote of the night from someone ; "They're not as good as they were 30 years ago." Oh, the risks you take of being in a Band and not just burning out and never coming back.Well - it had been some first day !! - only 3 more to go ..............
As we approached The Winter Gardens Friday lunchtime there were quite a few people sitting on the pavement drinking strong lager and cider. In fact the same people were in the same positions throughout the weekend - never seeming to actually go inside the Venue. Perhaps that's what being a 'Punk' is all about !?!Once inside Eastfield put an amazing ammount of adrenaline into their 2pm Set. As soon as they finish I hop over to catch Pete Bentham And The Dinner Ladies - most enjoyable. Witty lyrics, catchy tunes and yes - you guessed it - two ladies who looked far too young to be 'Dinner Ladies.'The Olympia opens it's doors on the Friday - a vast Venue with a Main Stage at one end and a second stage in the corner. Timings interchange, so there's always a Band on in Olympia.I arrive just as Loaded 44 are kicking off. They play great Punk Rock and the female red haired vocalist gives it her all. I'm not sure of her name but she did some stunning vocals alongside Steve Ignorant at his final Last Supper Gig at Shepherds Bush Empire November 2011.Loaded 44 are clearly enjoying it, and this is true of the healthily sized crowd as well. A very good Set.I need some refreshment now so a trip to A.A. is in order. I catch some of Pog then see Andy T.in Bizarre Bizarre - he STILL hates Thatcher.Now it's time for one of Rebellions Favourite Sons in The Ballroom - namely TV Smith. It's billed as TV Smith And The Valentines, but TV ambles on to tell us that The Valentines are stuck at an Airport somewhere so it's Leigh Heggity with TV.TV and Leigh storm it. Smith is a very engaging character on many levels. He was the singer with The Adverts way back - remember 'Gary Gilmores Eyes' ??? - and for many years has been out there on his own. His Punk Rock Tour Diaries book 'Getting There' is well worth a read.TV & Leigh charm a large early evening crowd with great songs and banter. If there was any justice TV would be a millionairre by now, but he probably prefers things as they are.Next up in A.A. are The Dirty Folkers - an acoustic Vice Squad. This may sound odd, but it works incredibly well. In my opinion they're better like this than the full Band, and who can resist Becki ??What followed was my real surprise moment of the whole Festival. Anti Pasti were playing their first Gig for 17 years in The Ballroom. I thought I'd check them out, not expecting much. Well - they were stunning. Talk about up for it. The vocalist looked like he was having the time of his life. 'Another Dead Soldier' was one of the weekends anthems - and the punters were pogoing like it was 1982 all over again.'Anti Pasti, Anti Pasti' was the cry as they left the stage, and this continued until they returned for an unexpected encore.Another rendition of 'Soldier' was followed by a raucaus 'Wanna Be Your Dog' and they left to a heroes reception. A swift return to Rebellion beckons ...It was now about 00.20 and I headed to The Opera House. Bow Wow Wow were already onstage, playing some jungle beat that sounded sub 'C30 C60 C90 Go'-ish. Well, this pattern followed for the next few songs and they didn't hold my interest.It had been a long day and was now time for bed.
After a full breakfast on the Saturday morning we had a venture out to some of the nearby shops before reaching The Winter Gardens in time for Dirtbox Disco at 1.30pm. I'd never seen them before, but obviously a fair number of the good sized crowd had - and they got a great reception.
Catchy Punk tunes with interesting lyrics. I enjoyed them and Saturday was up and running.Another feature of rebellion is in the Spanish Hall where there is a Punk Art Exhibition, and in the afternoons John Robb Interviews various people. This is then followed by a Poetry/Spoken Word Session.This afternoon we caught Slaughter And The Dogs then Viv Albertine (ex Slits) being Interviewed. Viv in particular was highly entertaining with her strong opinions and views - she has an Autobiography coming out soon. Punk Poet Joolz was up next, but I headed off to The Ballroom for TV Smith - and yes, The Valentines had arrived !! They were superb, playing lots of old songs by The Adverts. 'No Time To Be 21' and 'Bored Teenagers' stood out in particular.After some fresh air and food it was time for Penetration. Pauline Murray's voice still sounded good, and they played a rousing Set.In Olympia 1 Paranoid Visions were on next, and they were superb. An old time Punk Band from Dublin, who had split up then got back together. They combined energyy and anger to great effect - with some excellent tunes thrown in. If you haven't heard of them check them out.The Cravats were pretty entertaining over in the Bizarre Bizarre then Vice Squad (full Band) really got into it. i've seen Vice Squad 3 times in the last year - and this was the best.The 'original' Punk-Poet Patrick Fitzgerald was on in Almost Acoustic, and it was standing room only. I saw about 20 minutes before leaving for the nights Headliners ...Public Image Ltd ; they always get people going one way or the other !!!It was going to be interesting to see what reaction they got as obviously they're not Rebellion's 'usual' 1-2-3-4 type 'Punk' Group.As we waited for them to come on a few nearby were hoping "He plays some Pistols songs" - not likely to happen these days.At just after the witching hour Mr Lydon hits the stage and informs us "This is Public Inage Ltd ; ENJOY !!!" They then play 'This Is Not A Love Song' and 'Deeper Water' (from the new Album). Both are elongated versions, and for some present this was obviously just TOO much - a few punters leave and head for the rather dubious delights of King Kurt ....
Genarally Lydon lets the - superb - music do the talking. He reprimands someone who throws a drink at him and talks of how 'Original Punk was about being Positive.'At this moment in time PiL are a full Band at the top of their game. Songs such as 'Warrior' and 'Disappointed' just sound so good, and a peak is reached with 'Death Disco' and 'Chant'. Drum problems mean we get an acoustic start to encore 'Out Of The Woods' before the drums kick in again ... and as ever 'Rise' is monumental.Public Image Ltd play for over 2 hours, and are stunning.One day left - and much to look forward to ... including Max giving away the last of his prizes ...GoldBlade hit the stage at 2pm with an energy rush that suggests they've spent all morning consuming Red Bull ... A big crowd lap up their anthems - and newie 'The Shamen Are Coming'. John Robb is a great frontman - and gives it his all. They are excellent.I need a sit down now - a Pint in A.A. and some Louise Distras.At last years Rebellion the highlight of the whole weekend for my friend was the Set by Captain Hotknives. Afterwards she brought some CDs from him, only to get home and discover that they didn't play !!! She informs him of this before he goes on - and he happily gives her some more ... then mentions this story during his - wonderful - Set.Hotknives is one man and his guitar. Obviously his reputation is spreading as it's a packed Bizarre Bizarre. 40 minutes later he receives a rapturous send off from the crowd. Suffice to say that anyone who can reinterpret 'White Riot' into 'White Rice' is a genius in my book .... Go and see him, then you'll know why he's called 'Hotknives' !!!!Ex Stiff Little Fingers Guitarist Henry Cluney is next up in A.A. He is highly entertaining. A.A. is as full as I saw it all weekend for Henry - he really didn't need to sing - can he sing ??? - as a packed room belted out word for word the Fingers Classics.I saw about 20 minutes of Punk-Pop Band Protex before returning to the Acoustic bar for ... TV Smith - yes he gets EVERYWHERE at Rebellion. He was on top form, but the mighty UK Subs beckoned ....The Subs always draw a full house. Earlier in the afternoon I had been chatting to their legendary front man Charlie Harper - and he asked if he could borrow the tee Shirt that I was wearing for this evenings Gig !!! I said no.The Subs have the crowd in the palm of their hand from the very start of opening track 'Emotional Blackmail'. I think Charlie is now 67 - what a star he is. Incredible.Things reach fever pitch with 'Warhead' - what a tune. Everyone in The Ballroom sings along.A fantastic set - long live The UK Subs.It was the Rebellion 2012 Home Run ... and what a run ; I shot over to olympia and made my way to the front for Stiff Little Fingers - minus Henry Cluney.Fingers anthems continued one after another ; 'Wasted Life', 'At The Edge' and 'Nobodys Heroes' still all sound so good.The Set flew by, and I was very pleased when one of my very personal favs 'Johnny was' was included in the encores.Just one very last port of call .... At The Opera House Altered Images were playing. They were well into their Set when I arrived, but I'm glad I made the effort. Clare Grogan looked stunning - and her voice wasn't bad either. The other 'Altered Images' were indeed 'altered' - all girls !!Clare dedicated 'Dead Pop Stars' to Siouxsie, and of course they played 'Happy Birthday'.What a finale to an incredible weekend.
By my reckoning I had seen about 42 Bands/Performers over the 4 days - and enjoyed most of them. Others that played included Rancid, The Only Ones, Neville Staples Band etc etc etc ....The ticket cost £90 - I'd say that's value !!!Hopefully this review shows that Rebellion Festival isn't all just Hardcore Punk Bands ; if you like 'Punl' / 'Alternative' music it's a great weekend.The best recommendation I can give it is that I already have my ticket for 2013 .....Andy Webster.
Julianne Regan and Wayne Hussey release their eagerly awaited CURIOS Album towards the end of 2011. Andy interviewed Julianne mid October '11.
It's good to see you recording again; does it feel as though you've been away a long time?
Thanks Andy. Well it doesn’t feel like I’ve been away as such, because I have been doing bits and pieces of music, just more low key and more quietly than before. Since the last time All About Eve released and recorded anything I’ve done some backing vocals for Judy Dyble, Tim Bowness (Memories of Machines project), and I was also involved in a project called La Femme Verte who released an album earlier this year. I’ve also recorded, co-written and released several songs with the Eden House. So I don’t really feel like I’ve been away.
Your first role in a Band was playing bass with Gene Loves Jezebel; what memories do you have of that time and were you into the 'Goth' scene?I have memories of it being an impoverished, bedsit-land life, but very exciting at the same time as I’d just recently moved to London. I was at The London College of Fashion and dropped out to pursue an unsuccessful career as a music journalist, and to join GLJ. I don’t remember there being a ‘Goth’ scene as such; I’m not sure the term had been coined. I was seeing bands live such as Bauhaus, but I’m sure my friends and I were referring to that whole thing as ‘Post Punk’. I was just really into seeing bands I liked, whatever type. I saw bands such as Orange Juice (Edwyn Collins’ old band), Nico, Wasted Youth, The Virgin Prunes, The Birthday Party, Psychedelic Furs… That was the kind of thing that was happening at the time, but no, it wasn’t called ‘Goth’.
You recorded vocals on 'Severina' with The Mission and All About Eve supported them on tour, so you have links with Wayne going back years. When did you first consider doing an album together?We’d never thought about it until we had the idea to do Curios together. Wish we’d done it years ago actually. Can’t believe it hadn’t occurred to us before. Still, maybe it was just that this was the right time to do it; maybe it wouldn’t have worked had it happened years ago. Right idea, right time.
How has the recording process of this album been considering you both live so far apart?It’s been great. I like working remotely. I like to be able to pay attention to detail and work at my own pace, which is slow… I found it very collaborative, more so than projects I’ve done when I’ve been in the same room as the other people involved. With the distance, there is more time for things to ferment, for ideas to sink in, change, things to breathe. There’s no life or death moments in a rehearsal room where you want to kill someone because they think the chorus should start with a G major instead of a minor. Things can be done at a considered pace. This doesn’t mean there are no exciting moments. I am sure Wayne received many emails from me where I simply wrote, ‘That sounds f*cking GREAT!!!’ alongside very few nitpicky ones where we are discussing if the backing vocal on the verse is a nanosecond too early coming in. I’d say it’s been an absolute pleasure, a no pressure / big reward way of working, and an opportunity to learn stuff from someone that I respect, a chance to approach things differently than I may have otherwise done.
Was it easy or hard to pick the songs to cover?Easy. We both brought songs to the table and the other one liked them. Wayne and I are song fans. I’m not so much into bands or movements as such, but songs. I’ve always felt that way. That’s why I can love a good song by someone that’s not ‘cool’ or not ‘valid’ or not ‘current’ or whatever. That’s why to me the Carpenters are as valuable as The Banshees, ‘Close to You’ is as valid as ‘Spellbound’.
Was it hard trying to maintain the commercial success you had with AAE whilst trying to do the sort of material that as a band you wanted to do?
Yes, because we ultimately failed to do that. We always did more or less what we wanted, and we were fortunate enough that it coincided with what people wanted to buy, at the time. We then moved out of fashion, out of favour, and still carried on doing what we wanted to do, but by then people weren’t buying it. We lost our record deal because of it, which was a shame because it’s nice when someone else is paying the mortgage while you write songs and enjoy being creative. But the bankrolling stopped and I had to get a job and join the real world again. We could have made a few changes and perhaps been more successful, but we didn’t want to. We liked what we were doing too much. Selfish sods.
With hindsight, which is your favourite AAE song and Album?
I think my favourite song is Are You Lonely, for the reasons that I wrote it for my Dad, who has since died, and David Gilmour of Pink Floyd played on it, beautifully. As for album, I’m tempted to say the debut album because I have great hedonistic memories of recording it, the band were all good friends, we had lots of hits on it, life was simple and vibrant. But I think I’d have to say Ultraviolet, musically and lyrically, but I do regret that I’d kind of changed my vocal style to a characterless whisper for the most part, and mixed the vocal too low. It’s flawed, but I still love it.
You reformed AAE once - do you think this may happen again?
I don’t think so. I mean, there’s the question, ‘Who is All About Eve?’ Is it the Tim era? The Marty era? The post-Marty era? The only reason to reform All About Eve would be if there were new material. I couldn’t face playing only the old stuff. It’s too complicated, there’s too much emotional baggage to get together and write new songs, I think. Also, I reckon we’d all be too long in the tooth to compromise very much, and I think that across the years we’d have grown and moved towards different styles of music that we individually liked, and they may be too disparate to come together in any fruitful way.
How do you spend most of your time these days? Do you miss not being part of a band?
I spend most of my time doing what most other people do, earning a living at a day job. Since the record deal days I’ve had all sorts of jobs; I’ve been a cleaner, a receptionist, worked at a market research agency, hospital administration, audio typist, health care assistant, so there’s not been a lot of time to miss being in a band. When I do get time and have the energy, I make music, I make little films, I take photos, I walk the neighbour’s dog, I read good books and watch television. I’d quite like to write a book if I could find the time. Being in a band, well, it’s like a family, so when it works it’s cosy and you feel loved and part of a happy gang; when it doesn’t, when it’s dysfunctional, then you feel like you want a divorce, or want to run away from home, or even that you need to be sectioned.
Are there any 'current' artists or bands that inspire you?
No, no current artists or bands inspire me really. Any inspiration I get these days tends to come from within or from things that happen to me or to people I know. There are artists that I treasure, but they’re not current really. Morrissey usually hits the spot; songs like ‘To Me You Are a Work of Art’ or ‘I Have Forgiven Jesus’ inspire me to want to write great songs, and even though his last album was fairly inaccessible, I still lend an ear to whatever David Sylvian is doing. Ah, I’ve thought of a more current artist I like; Grinderman, but they don’t inspire me to the point that I want to do what they do. That would be insane.
Do you ever go to gigs these days?
No. The last gig I went to was Air at the Royal Festival Hall, I think in 2004. They made me cry; it was so beautiful and laid back but emotional at the same time. I did see Marilyn Manson at Alexandra Palace but can’t remember how long ago that was. Great performance, terrible sound. I loved the Antichrist Superstar and Mechanical Animals albums. I don’t know why I don’t go to gigs these days really. Maybe it’s to do with the fact that I can’t stand going to sticky lager carpet venues, and gigs at the more salubrious venues are often too expensive. If Bowie played at my local scout hall, I’d haul myself along though.
Are you and Wayne planning any live shows to promote the new album?
I don’t think so. I think that if we were to play live, the set would have to include some original compositions. Maybe Wayne and I should do some writing together and take it from there… Nice idea.
Andy Webster caught up with Dave - one half of KOMMAND + KONTROL - at the end of March '11.
How long have K + K been going, and how did you get together ?
Dave. Angus and I were both in the Band Kreuzdammer. We started working on some new ideas about 3 and a half years ago. We'd been into Industrial music for 20+ years, and decided we wanted to be an 'Industrial Band'.
Where did the name come from ?
Dave. I have no idea !! I can't remember. Our first Gig was at AntiChrist in 2007, and looking back we were quite 'Rookie-like'.
Did the tracks come together pretty quickly ?
Dave. I always have loads and loads of unfinished tracks around. Angus and I both work full time so it took a while to get things sorted.
What is the process when you make music ?
Dave. I do all the music then play it to Angus who will add his thoughts/ideas to the tracks and he will then write the lyrics. I put it together at home and then we mix it at a Studio.
Your Debut EP was released in 2009 ...
Dave. We released 'Dead Ground Ahead' ourselves via Armalyte (run by Giles Moorhouse). The tracks seemed to fit well together and the overall sound was what we had hoped for. We did quite a few Gigs ; Slimelight a couple of times and Supporting Unhelig. Getting Gigs was hard as our sound probably wasn't 'dancy' enough for some. We got a pretty good response, and were compared to Skinny Puppy - which is fine by us !!!
You say you have loads of tracks lying around ...
Dave. Things usually come quickly. Sometimes I will come across a sample or loop which gives me the initial idea. These often come from the Dance Scene ; I take bits and keep them on a file. Once I have the initial idea I will spend the next few days playing around with it. Sometimes a track will come together in a couple of days ; other times it will take a couple of months.
Do you think 'The Scene' has changed over recent years ?
Dave. I think it's gone much more Electro, which I like and think is a good thing.
What is your response to people who say that this sort of music all sounds the same ?
Dave. I would say listen to Nitzer Ebb and Front Line Assembley and say that they sound the same !!!!
How have things evolved since 'Dead Ground Ahead' was released ?
Dave. A lot !! Over the past couple of years we have started listening to a lot more Electronic music, and that has given us some new ideas. I particularly like Deadmau5 and their fat Electro sound. Within that we want to keep to our Industrial roots.
Your 2nd EP 'Full Frontal Assult' was released early 2011 ...
Dave. The tracks are more varied than on our debut. 'I Promise' and 'Secret Police' are far more banging. I wrote those after a long night getting wrecked listening to hard techno. At the end of the night I felt "Wow - I want to write something like that." 'Dystopia' is very Old School EBM with a DubStep riff. There will be lyrics to it on another version ....
You launched the EP by playing 3 UK dates with Nachtmahr in Feb. '11.
Dave. That was a great experience !! A very heavy long weekend hanging out with Nachtmahr and Uberbyte. It was good for us as a Band. Thomas is a really good bloke and he helped us to get those Gigs.
Do you find it frustrating that this type of music is so much more popular in Germany than the UK, yet the German market is so hard to get into ?
Dave. Yes - very frustrating !! We would love to play live over there, and I think we would go down really well. It's very difficult to get a foot in the door, but we're persevering. We have played in Holland with V2A and that went very well.
You are out Clubbing, dancing away, and a K + K track is played. Do you go and sit down or carry on dancing ?
Dave. This has happened - and I dance more !!!
When can we expect an Album ?
Dave. We have more than enough tracks for an Album. The tracks are very varied - from EBM to Industrial Metal. We're not sure exactly how it will all come together ; it will certainly be interesting. We hope to release it towards the end of 2011 ; we're looking at a Label to release it and we have had some interest that we're currently exploring.
Do you think it is possible for the Album to 'crossover' into a more 'commercial' market ?
Dave. I think some of the new more Electro tracks could be more accessible. We won't compromise too much though ; our tracks will always have a certain darkness.
One final question ; You are given a magic wand and can play anywhere in the world with 2 other Bands ....Andy Webster.
Dave. I think I'd transport us to Amphi Fest, Cologne to play alongside Depeche Mode and Front 242 ....
AMPHI FEST 2011. Cologne, Germany.
The new SPUCKTUTE 'Kill All DJs' EP is released on 22nd March 2013.
SPUCKTUTE play a LAUNCH gIG THAT NIGHT AT uNDERBELLY, hOXTON.
For more info - Tour Dates - Free Downloads - Videos etc. visit www.spucktute.net or contact at email@example.com
THE SISTERS OF MERCY ; 16.02.1981 - 16.02.2011
The Sisters Of Mercy celebrated THIRTY YEARS at Leeds Met Uni on the 16th & 17th February 2011.
Wed. 16th Feb. Lucretia. Ribbons. Dr Jeep/Detonation Boulevard. No Time To Cry. Crash And Burn. Marian. Body Electric. Giving Ground. Arms. Dominion. Summer. Alice. Gift That Shines. We Are The Same Suzanne. Neverland. Flood 2. More. Vision Thing. First And Last And Always. Pipeline. Temple Of Love.
Thursday 17 Feb. Kiss The Carpet. Gift That Shines. Flood 1. Marian. Ribbons. Crash And Burn. Train/Detonation Boulevard. Logic. Alice. Anaconda. Will I Dream. Dominion. Flood 2. More. First And Last And Always. This Corrosion. Rain From Heaven. Temple Of Love. Something Fast. Pipeline. Vision Thing.
The above is a ticket from their Gig at The Royal Albert Hall in 1985 signed by both Andrew Elsritch and Wayne Hussey.
SPUCKTUTE - GO TO WAR CD Review.
This band has been together for less than a year but already they are making major waves in the electro and industrial worlds with gigs up and down the country and this, their debut EP: Go to war!
From the outset this EP is an unrelenting assault on your senses and perceptions, hard hitting synths and programming punctuated by punchy and often witty vocals; in this music you can definitely hear the production lines of a dystopian future mass producing weapons and products of a consumerist society gone out of control, and the lyrical pop culture references are so close to home they remind you that that future is not so distant after all! The strengths of this band rest not only on the sonic fusillade produced by the electronics but also on the injection of dark humour and cultural satire from the lyrics.
Stand out tracks include the dancefloor blasting “drop the bombs” and the excellent anthem “Jeremy Kyle nation”, but to be honest the entire EP is an industrial gem with deep rooted punk ideals. Spucktute aren’t just one to watch out for, they’re one to get out of the way of because this war machine is moving fast and will stop for nobody!Patrick W.
How long have you been DJing ?
8 1/2 yearsDescribe The Rapture Night, Roadmender, Northampton that you run ....
The Raptuire is an EBM, Industrial, Dark Electro and Goth club night held monthly at The Roadmender, 1 Ladys lane, Northampton.
The Rapture started purely as an EBM Industrial night which we ran once every quarter. It has evolved into also covering the new dance orientated music of the scene as well as embracing goth and post punk. We run the night for the the group members, all the djs play for free because we love playing what we do. The only reason a charge is made is to cover the costs of the venue which keeps the night going. We are venturing into hosting live bands as from May 2011, 2-3 up and coming bands will be playing before the club night with the door cost of £6 also allowing entrance to The Rapture club night afterwards. The band night will kick off at 7.30 and The Rapture club night runs from 10.30 til 3am. Entry is £4.
5 favourite Albums ever ?
The hard one and I bet I will change my mind after sending this!!
KMFDM - Adios
Ministry - Land Of Rape And Honey
Hazel O'connor - Breaking Glass
Prince - Sign Of The Times
Faith No More - King For A Day, Fool For A lifetime
Best Gig you have ever been to ?
Am I allowed a festival? 2010 Amphi Festival in Germany
Other than that would have to be Prince at Wembley - The Symbol tour back in the 80's
Favourite DJ ?
Me of course!!! I am one of those annoying people who will try and hog the dj to get him to play every tune in the order I say as I think it will work, the wonders of alcohol!! Other than that would have to be my co-dj Babygoesblue (Gav)
Top 3 Floor Fillers ?
I try not to rely on floor fillers too much as they get played over and over again by everybody and they bore me. If I need to get the dancing going I will though and these among plenty of others work perfectly well.
Tanzdiktator - by Nachtmahr
Dissapoint - by Assemblage 23
Hate This - by Grendel
Favourite drink ?
Newcastle Brown Ale - buy me this and you may get your request played after all, not that I endorse bribery!!!
Top Band of All-Time ?
If you could DJ anywhere in the world where would it be ?
Moscow - Red Square or Berlin - Brandenburg Gate
Fantasy date for a night out ?
I love going out but I am actually never happier than when doing my own night where I can play the music I like to people who enjoy it. It sounds corny but it's true. Or if you meant 'date' that would be Lisa Bonnet (Cosby show)
THE BIRTHDAY MASSACRE
Formed in 1999 (originally called Imagica) The Birthday Massacre are based in Toronto, Canada. They have released the Albums Nothing And Nowhere ('02), Violet ('05), Walking With Strangers ('07), and Show And Tell ('09).
Their new Album Pins And Needles is out September 2010 and they are Touring the UK in October '10. The Tour starts on 5th Oct. at Coalition, Brighton and runs through until 27 October at O2 Academy Islington London. For full Tour Dates + Tickets, click on the link below.
THE SISTERS OF MERCY
On the 3rd October 2000 I witnessed a particularly dire Gig at Rock City Nottingham by The Sisters. I had seen many great performances over the years prior to this, but to me things now seemed to be in terminal decline - and I said that night that I would never go and see them again. I stuck to this until April 2009, when somewhat hesitantly I ventured to The Forum, London. Somewhat to my surprise I had a great night. So, when The Sisters announced their only UK date of 2010 how could I resist ??? I'm so glad I didn't !!!
The Venue was Sold Out, and there was a real sense of anticipation in the air. The shadowy figures emerged, and 'First And Last And Always' kicked in. Von's voice sounded good, and we were up and running. 'Ribbons' was immense, they played 'Marian' then suddenly the opening to 'No Time To Cry' ... apparently the first time this had been played since The Royal Albert Hall in '85 !!! It was great.
There was just about the right ammount of dry ice, Eldritch seemed relaxed - even chatting with the audience. 'We Are The Same Suzanne' has grown and grown on me, and 'Arms' is in my head as well now. I think it was a brutal 'Flood' that brought the Set to a close. As the encore built it wasn't clear what was being played, then people realised it was indeed 'Rain From Heaven' ; and it was superb. 'Vision Thing', 'Top Nite Out' then a climax with 'Temple Of Love'.
All the Band looked like they had really enjoyed the night, and the crowd reaction was excellent.Andy Webster
The Sisters had been awesome - something I def. thought I'd never be writing !!!
Bring on the 30th Anniversary Gigs in Feb. '11 ..............
If you think Electronic music is not at all sexy, then you don't know Swedish boy-meets-girl duo Ashbury Heights. These two mix early New Wave with the shrillness of Glam, the raw appeal of Electro Clash and warm fat analogue synths.
Their music radiates a mixture of boundless energy and coolness. The early Human League in with The Thin White Duke and Tubeway Army.
Ashbury Heights received acclaim during the Out Of Line Festival Tour 2007.
At the end of 2008 new vocalist Kari Berg entered the Band. The chemistry seems to agree perfectly.
Nothing can stop Ashbury Heights .....
1) Where are you based and how would you describe your music?
Void: It’s all about respecting good old Goth Rock traditions and making our own music mixed with all inspiration taken from everything around us.
2) How did you originally get together in 2001 ?
V: We’ve played in metal band before we formed DP. But we always wanted to make some goth rock noise and when it grew up in us we decided to bring Deathcamp Project to life.
3) What are your 3 favourite All-Time Albums ?
V: It’s very hard to choose – there’s so many good albums, but maybe I’ll try to answer from the gothic point of view. There you go - 3 classics:
1) Fields of the Nephilim - Elyzium
2) Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures
3) The Cure - Disintegration
4) Top 3 songs ever ?
V: The same problem.
1) Type o Negative – Black No 1
2) Joy Division – Atmosphere
3) The Cure – The Same Deep Water as You
5) If you could play a Gig anywhere in the World, where would you choose and which 3 other Bands would be on the bill?
V: Maybe touring over China with Darkthrone, Turbonegro and Leonard Cohen including local supports. It could be funny
6) Favourite drink ?
V: Sex on the beach
7) If you could get one Musician to guest on your next Album who would you choose ?
V: Oh, Maybe Carl McCoy as a guest vocalist...
8) Fantasy date for a night out ?
V: (laughing), no idea - maybe small date with rest of the band to finish mixing of our new material. (smile)
MARK E SMITH
"I've hung in there this long ... so why f**k off now ?
That's all part of who The Fall are anyway ; the persistent effort that goes into it, the coping, the getting by, and the times when the Group's tiptop and you go and have a drink ..."
Bands come, Bands go - but The Fall are forever.
They've never really been one of my Favourite Bands. I've liked some of their songs and hated others. Mark is obviously an interesting character and certainly someone who has never 'sold out'. They've released god knows how many Albums, seem to change the line-up every few months and I remember Mark appearing to be in a total state when interviewed on Newsnight the night John Peel died.
I never really understood why people were so obsessive about them ...
As I write this I am listening to 50,000 Fall Fans Can't Be Wrong, and I just can't stop listening to it.
39 Golden Greats - and they really are Golden Greats !!
Awesome, fantastic, timeless songs.
I now want to go back and hear all of their Albums - hey, that's quite some task !!!
Am I now getting what all those people have got for the past 33 years ????
"The Fall ; Always different, Always the same ..."
Double CD 50,000 Fall Fans Can't Be Wrong.
Renegade - The Lives And Tales Of Mark E Smith (Autobiography).
PETER HOOK ; 'Unknown Pleasures' Live.
30th Anniversary of Ian Curtis' death. 18 May 2010. FAC251, Manchester.
"The preparation for this Gig was very interesting as it was the first time I'd analysed the music since we wrote it. The funny thing is I never realised how many words Ian used to sing. Every song is like a wonderful essay." Peter Hook.
The atmosphere is intense at a packed FAC251 as Hooky and his Band The Light hit the stage. I for one had been expecting him to go straight into 'Unknown Pleasures', so it was a great surprise when Warsaw's 'At A Later Date' kicked things off. Peter was on vocals and he put his all into a stream of early classics that sounded fantastic.
Then it was time for Joy Divisions Debut Album in full. Making a couple of references to Ian, Hooky seemed genuinely moved at times - and it was obvious just how much the songs he was playing meant to him. It somehow didn't seem strange hearing him sing the vocals rather than Ian .....
Rowenta (ex Mondays) appeared and contributed vocal duties on 'Insight' and 'New Dawn Fades'. The Set flashed by and all too soon the final notes to 'I Remember Nothing' were hanging in the air. The reaction from the crowd was fantastic and Hooky soon reappeared to introduce Simon Topping (ACR). The intro to 'Transmission' sent the audience into a frenzy. Dance, dance, dance to the radio ....
Again the Band depart - and we wonder if that is all we will get. Cheers follow cheers, and an emotional looking Hooky is back onstage. Only one song could possibly finish an evening such as this ; and a rampaging version of 'Love Will Tear Us Apart' is just that song.
Without getting into a massive debate as to if this was the right way or not to 'celebrate' the 30th anniversary of Ian Curtis' death, all I would say is it totally came across how much Hooky loved Ian Curtis and the music of Joy Division. These songs have truly stood the test of time and sound as good today as they did over 30 years ago.
A truly unique evening that had been both incredible and harrowing, and not one that anyone who was present will forget.
SetList. At A Later Date. Warsaw. No Love Lost. Leaders Of Men. Failures. Digital. Glass. Disorder. Day Of the Lords. Candidate. Insight. New Dawn Fades. She's Lost Control. Shadowplay. Wilderness. Interzone. I Remember Nothing. Transmission. Love Will Tear Us Apart.Andy Webster.
SPUCKTUTE ; Electro/Industrial/Post-Punk Band.
Debut 5 track CD 'Go To War' released 23.04.10.
SPUCKTUTE CD LAUNCH PARTY At Whitby Goth Weekend April '10. On Friday 23rd April 3-4pm at The Shambles Pub, Whitby.
SPUCKTUTE will be giving away free CDs and there will be Merchandise available.
Come along and meet SPUCKTUTE !!!
FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM.
22/01/2010 Club Progresja Warsaw, Poland TWO NIGHTS, TWO FACES OF FIELDS OFF THE NEPHILIM 22 + 23/01/2010
Testimony: Stéphan Cordary Comment: Emmanuel Hennequin : Pictures by Jakub Sorys
“Two nights, two faces off Fields Off The Nephilim”: thus promotion hardly announced it the double live experiment which awaited the fans of the British group, of return to Warsaw two years after their last concert in this place. Carl McCoy & Co. appreciate Poland bigrement, so much so that they grant to him early product of their return to the stage in 2010, in a fashion of exposure comparable so that they presented with the other doubles performance of 2008, “Ceromonies”, which was used as primary source to the next live DVD. The current line-up of the group of McCoy includes/understands, in addition to the new Snake bass player, of people mainly resulting from the seraglio metal: in particular Lee Newell (battery, musician of Sacred Mother Tongue) and Gav King (guitar, ex-member of The More I See, formation in which is also Gizz Butt, guitarist of The Nephilim for the concert of London in 2007 and for some others afterwards). The respective groups of Gav and Lee, apart from Fields Off The Nephilim, maintain strong bonds of work with Rob Ferguson, manager of the group of McCoy.
The performances of these two evenings lie within the one year old scope “of project”: nearest exit of the live DVD “Ceromonies” (initially announced for the first quarter 2010, beautiful visible trailer card on www.fields-of-the-nephilim.com); and especially, return in studio for a fifth album, awaited successor of this “Mourning Sun” icy and mechanics that McCoy realized in 2005. A opus V which the singer wants officially to see devoting an effort of “group”. Rumours circulate according to which Tom Edwards, the new guitarist, present since two years, would have taken a dominating place at the sides of McCoy in the composition of the new titles. Who will live will see. What is sure, it is that Edwards reinstated in the sound frame of the combo these arpeggios which made the original melodicity. They had sometimes suffered, these last years but as over the period 1992-1996, of the domination of these saturations as affectionate McCoy from Split of the first line-up of Fields Of The Nephilim. Some think that it is there the sign of one return to the authenticity of the original matter, that which held with Carl the founders: Tony Pettitt, Nod and Paul Wright, and the guitarist made a little later in the history, Peter Yates. They are from now on “in the history” but whatever the performance of new the line-up, not large world will not be able to forget them. Today, at all events, Fields Of The Nephilim is a “other group”. Stéphan Cordary, correspondent of “Obsküre”, was in Poland for the 22 and January 23 concerts the last. We leave room to his testimony here. Expert of the work of the group, Stéphan, many times, attended with the performances of the line-up several times renovated since 2007. Its glance does not matter any that more in our eyes. It will cross our comment.
FRIDAY 22.01.2010 First evening, first “facet” of the group, therefore. But which? Stéphan: “Arrived at Warsaw, name O how much evocative for the music lovers independent. Snow is omnipresent, soon will be with the turn of the fog to enter in scene with Fields off The Nephilim. We are not yet there. It is the first meeting with the group for this year, relatively little time after the concert relatively décrié of Birmingham of at the beginning of November 2009. This weekend, Carl and his men are awaited, a form of revenge. One promised two faces of Nephilim to us: a “traditional” meeting, another more “modern”, some fearing (wrongly) a metal evening. The Progresja Club is nested with the right in the middle of nowhere. Even the taxi drivers tend to lose themselves in this part of Warsaw. The entry with the club is slowed down by a a little chaotic organization, although the concert does not appear sold out. The fan club of Fields, them from now on famous dawnrazor' S, ensures an unquestionable environment, in spite of - 15° which would have tétaniser most valiant. The two fronts groups, Polpo Motel and 1984, pain with touching. Each one in the public preserves for the major act. The group is announced for twenty-two hours, and it is precisely at this time that the first agreements resound. The scene is invaded the smoke-producing ones. The musicians arrive by the line, preceding Carl McCoy who does not show himself, as with his practice, which at the very last time.
And the celebration can start. Will be connected “Harmonica Man”, “Preacher Man”, “Trees like down”, “The Watchman”, “Dawnrazor”, “Penetration”, “From the Fire”, “under Will” and “Moonchild” in the principal setlist Coils. This choice is judicious and in conformity with the advertisements. We had this evening the “traditional” side of the work of Fields off The Nephilim. Environment in the public is excellent, the execution on very controlled scene, perhaps too besides.” Except for metal and violent one “Penetration”, resulting from “Zoon” (the album of Nefilim) and from now on usual “From the Fire” (extracted the album of demonstrations “rejected” a time by McCoy), which describes Stéphan corresponds indeed to the traditional facet It is presented to an enthusiastic public and in front of which McCoy makes watch of implication. Stéphan makes simply the report, and goes from it further. According to him, another of the members seems very in liveliness and the whole of the line-up is held well: “It is again with a pleasure not dissimulated that Carl Mc Coy is on scene, exceptional of power in its service, singing as if time did not have any catch on him. The palm of ease is allocated to the guitarist Tom Edwards, very ahead this evening.
The bass player, Snake, appear to find from now on his marks, being more relegated to the simple role of substitute of fortune of John Carter. Gav King [note: mainly in load of saturations] is faithful to its services passed, Lee Newell sober. Some engineering problems will have éraillé show Ci or there, but anything significant. The sound is good, clear and powerful”. A regret, however: “Perhaps the lament it will be directed about the duration of the principal show, about fifty minutes. A little just”. The Polish public expresses its heat by stressing with one voice a “Nephilim, Nephilim” very supported. Recalls. And the surprise of the evening arrives, not in the choice of the pieces but in their execution. We are entitled to a “For her” dantesque, energetic, compact” Light. “For her Light” remained, it should be noted, rather little exploited the last performances of Fields Of The Nephilim, whose interpretation led to an excessively metal and a little oublieuse version of the spirit of the title recorded for the third album. This evening, the group lengthens the original version, EC. which gives the opportunity to McCoy to deploy new phrased song at the end of the course, pretence to correspond to old parts being found adulterated on the individual version. Stéphan attests return to something of less thick and moreover felt, for “For her Light”, that during the last restitutions “live”:
“The musicians returned to this splendid part of the album “Elizium” all its direction, far from a little dull version of Shepherds Bush Empire [note: Stéphan speaks here about the concerts given in 2008 pennies the generic title “Ceromonies”]. “Psychonaut” finally to conclude, fright is total”, concludes our witness, who sets out again with others of this first evening on a feeling of satisfaction: “If this first evening served as amuse-stops, one has a presentiment of that the dish of resistance of the following day will be worthy of one three stars. One was at this time there, far from the truth. The after party is correct, but each one has already the head elsewhere ".
SATURDAY 23.01.2010. Second evening, return to the business. To hold, has minimum. To make better, if possible. Is this possible? The word returns in Stéphan: “As for one day without end, one presents oneself again in front of the Progresja club this Saturday January 23, with in memory the beautiful evening of the day before. Some in crowd think of having lived the best, fearing a massive exposure of “Zoon” on the setlist of the day. Again the first two parts, Deathcamp Project (sic) and Hetane, except matter for each one, with the limit of painful for the second. Most of the public is engulfed besides in the anteroom of the room, it is to say! Twenty-two hours crushes, (a) repetita. Except that not. We will not have business with one copy-to stick first evening but well with this “second facet” of Fields off The Nephilim that it had been announced to us, and that with a bit of skepticism we had accomodated like a blow marketing.
The setlist is directed “Zoon”/“Mourning Sun” but takes again certain essential group. In the order it will be “Shroud”, “Straight to the Light”, “Penetration”, “From the Fire”, “Moonchild”, “The Watchman”, “Requiem”, “Shine”, “Zoon III” and “Mourning Sun”. “Moonchild” is always there, belonging to these pieces for which have could not suffer any transaction. But what had appeared to us the day before on the recalls will appear this evening on the entirety of the show. Power, smoothness of execution, real pleasure of all the protagonists. The magic operated, and this more than of reason. Then is this because this setlist had the favours of McCoy, because centered on projects recent and carried out primarily by him, or quite simply because the Former Gods had thrown their reserved on this show? Always it is that of aucuns consider that it is about the one of the very best shows of Nephilim. And at this time there, at the end of the principal set, one knows that there will be at least still “Last Exit for the Lost” in recall. Exultation. “Under Will Coils” opens the ball, masterly. But “Last Exit…” we completes, McCoy haranguant crowd with jubilation.
The communion is with its roof and this piece, which evokes necessarily something of private individual for each one among us, like is offered personally by Nephilim to its public. Mc Coy will finish on a “thank you Warsaw, thank you the Dawnrazors”. Return outside. To breathe, take again breath. It is time to leave, but it floats in the air a perfume of magic. The experiment is not completely finished. “Around the two hours of the morning, awaiting our taxi in front of the room with some dawnrazoriens, always hagards, sounded by what we had just lived, we saw passing under our cold nose the minibus of the group. McCoy greeted us with respect, sharing with us a feeling of total success. This evening, the words had a direction, the gestures had a direction, the notes had a direction. In this 23.01 in Warsaw, we had not attended with a concert, but a “Ceromonie”. True, this time.”
Formed in October 2001 Deathcamp Project have a traditional 'Goth Rock' type sound. Powerful and catchy songs combine with the original tone of Void's voice to excellent effect.
Over the past 9 years they have played many Events in Europe, including W.G.T. and Castle Party. The Album 'Well Known Pleasures' was released to critical acclaim in 2008.
Most recently in Jan. '10 Deathcamp Project supported Fields Of The Nephilim in Warsaw.
Legendary Belgian Electro Industrial Pioneers SUICIDE COMMANDO release new Album 'Implements Of Hell' in Jan. 2010. To launch the Album they are playing a very rare UK date at Slimelight, London on 20th February. This is an evening that you should miss at your peril !!!!www.suicidecommando.be
PUBLIC IMAGE LIMITED.
The Electric Ballroom, London.
The giant PiL logo overlooks everything ; an iconic piece of Art that has stood the test of time. I'm glad to be able to report that the same can be said for the material played tonight. I've seen PiL many times live, and this line-up has to be one of the strongest. Despite telling us that his voice has 'gone' after the previous nights Gig Lydon is on good form - who knows if it's the throat spray or the brandy that help ?? Maybe a combination of both ...
The Ballroom isn't full (I'm sure the high ticket prices and the Gigs being so close to Christmas took an effect) but at the front it's a great atmosphere. For a PiL fan it's a 'Fantasy Set List'. Everything you would have wanted and more. Lydon is most definately not doing this for the money. It's like an unburdening of his inner most fears taking place before our eyes. Songs I haved loved for more years than I care to remember were being played with an intensity I thought I'd never see again.
Tracks from the second half of PiL's recorded career - particularly 'Disappointed' and 'Warrior' - stand up well ... but the earlier stuff is just fantastic. This really is the meaning behind the moaning. There are so many highlights. The core of tracks from the still influential 'Metal Box' and 'Annalisa' are stunning even after 30 years. You can see the pain in Lydons face as he sings 'Death Disco' - a song written for his Mum who was dying of cancer - and 'Memories' from the same era is equally as good.
'The Flowers Of Romance' bounds along with a tribal beat and is extended as they really do 'start all over again'. 'Albatross' sounds simply almighty as does 'Poptones'. It's hard to overstate what a great song this is.
The Set is brought to a ferocious climax with 'Religion' ; 'This IS Religion, This IS Religion'. He means it maan ... As the Band leave the Stage I feel that I have witnessed something very special. Yes, Lydon has probably made some bad decisions over the course of his career - and I do wonder just how many more brilliant songs and Albums he could have made had he worked with the right people - but what he gives us tonight is more than most people can dream of. Very few people are part of ONE Seminal Band ; this guy has been in TWO !!!
Encore 'Rise' is just epic. For John anger is STILL very much an energy. He had promised us 'surprises' and finishing with 'Open Up' was just that. When it was first released by Leftfield it sounded superb and tonights version more than does it credit.
Johnny thanks just about everyone at the end. Let's hope this outing inspires him to keep this Band together and set about recording a few new tunes. I've been to many very enjoyable Gigs in 2009 but this was DEF. my Gig Of The Year.
John Lydon ; 53 and the Public Image belongs to HIM.Andy Webster
24 Dec. '09.
FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM.
Plinston Hall, Letchworth, Herts,England. 13 September 1986,
On this dark, damp evening Plinston Hall was the only place to be for the return of our new local Superstars ; the true homecoming ... Plinston was fuller than I ever remember it being, and there was a big queue for the bar !! This meant I missed the first song by The Victims Of The Pestilence. Victims are led by the 'karmified' Gub ; a bundle of energy who rarely stays still throughout the Set. Therir brand of Psychedelic Punk Pop is the perfect cross over, and once heard their tunes stay in your head. Sharp catchy songs come thick and fast. 'Another Boy' is a song for a Generation. All too soon 'Why Does The Sun Follow Rainbows ?' brings things to a close. The applause is prolonged and they return for an encore. Victims are on the move - Stay Beautiful.
After more drinks The Last Salute hit the stage. I'd seen them once before and wasn't impressed. Tonight they're better. They've obviously been spending a lot of time listening at home to their early Cult records ... Guitarist Pete steals the show with his Hendrix-esque playing. Highlights include my favourite 'Fatal Moments' and the finale of 'Wild Thing' ... a slow build up then all hell lets loose. Half way through 'making my heart sing' members of the audience take over the Stage. Pete manages to lose his guitar and dives into the crowd. A chaotic conclusion to a fine 30 minutes !!!
So the Main Hall fills and the now familiar Intro music starts. Much dry ice, applause and Fields emerge. Already The Nephilim seem to have acquired quite a Cult following, and when you experience them live you can understand why. It's pretty hectic down the front and Power really is the name of the game. Apparently there have been quite a few people who have been following the whole Tour ....
A crunching, unrelenting sound gives the ears a battering. The Sisters revisited ?? Certainly comparisions are going to be made but I feel Fields are both good and individual enough to succeed on their own terms. Carl's voice is excellent as is the overall sound. The entire Set is very strong with lots of high points ... although 'Power' and 'DawnRazor' (the Set closer) particularly stand out. 'DawnRazor' is, I feel, potentially the next Single ; they totally sound as though they 'mean it' ...
Fields went down a storm and encore follows encore - the fans unwilling to let them leave ; possibly realising that this may be one of the last chances they will have to see them before they really hit the big time. In all there were 4 encxores ; the show ending with a reprise of 'Power'. We all went home smiling, in the knowledge that we had just witnessed a superb performance by one of the most exciting new forces in music today.
A FEW OLD FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM GIG TICKETS !!!!!
AMALGAMATION FESTIVAL 2009. November, Leeds.
I arrived by train to Leeds mid afternoon on the Friday. My accommodation was Leeds Central Travelodge - and this proved to be pretty handily located. It was only a 5 minute walk from the Station and approx. 15 minute walk from the Venues used over the weekend. After I had checked in and got sorted it was time to meet up with my friend and grab something to eat.
Amalgamation first took place in 2007, and is now back after a years absence. This was my first visit. Events kicked off mid evening at Sandiagos. We had a quick drink downstairs and immediately bumped into a couple of familiar faces. We went upstairs just as the wonderfully named Death By Electro Giants were coming on. It's a cliche but true - it's never easy being first Band on at an Event. The intimate room was great for getting close to the Bands. The Giants kicked up a good noise and got a few people moving.
Next were Implant. They only just arrived in time to perform, but I'm glad that they did. Sin's voice ws superb and their Set was rounded off with a superb take on 'Love Will Tear Us Apart.' It's hard to cover such a classic but they made it their own with Sin even ushering Martin offstage as the song started !!
The headliners Action Directe were next up and there was hardly room for all of them !!! I was looking forward to the performance as I'd never seen them live before, and they didn't disappoint. The pounding sound complemented Joel's vocals and the audience were soon dancing. A fitting climax to our first night. I'd def. recommend seeking out their new Album Vanguard.
We hung around for a while ; a couple of vodkas and some dancing then it was time for bed ...
Saturday kicked off with 'brunch' at Weatherspoons ; reasonable food at reasonable prices lol. It was a mid-afternoon start for Amalgamation ; unfortunately a couple of the Bands were unable to make it. Xykogen had to pull out at the last minute due to Mark having possibly got Swine Flu. This was a shame as they'd been on fine form at Club AntiChrist a month or so previously. 'Top Industrial Band Struck Down With Swine Flu' surely should have been the Front Cover story of the next weeks N.M.E. ....
We had a swift one in The Wrens - handily placed near Saturdays Venue SubCulture - then it was time for The Volatile Gentlemen to open proceedings. If the crowd doesn't come to you .... the 2 Vocalists spent most of their time in with the audience !! They were highly entertaining and I liked them. DigiCore followed. I thought they were OK without really grabbing me. One of the Band however did wear a very impressive BoilerSuit with DIGICORE on the back. There's nothing like a bit of self publicity !!!
The Ladder were fresh from Supporting Dope Stars Inc. and played a fine Electro Set. I thoroughly enjoyed them and feel there is a market out there for this duo. They'd go down a storm in the Clubs of Germany.
It was now tea time, and we retired once more to The Wrens. One female member of our party had already consumed a bottle of red wine and the 7.3% cider (only £2.90 a pint ...) went down very well on top of that !!! I settled for Scampi and a pint of Fosters.
We returned to SubCulture just as Flesh Eating Foundation were taking to the stage. Another duo, these 2 guys kicked up a great noise. Snarled vocals and heavy beats. Fake blood - presumably it was fake !!! - gradually covered the Band as the Set went on and this added to the show. I thought they were excellent.
Another bottle of red had by now taken it's toll on my friend (who shall remain nameless) ,,, but I was ready for a bottle of white. This was soon polished off and it was time for Attrition. Attrition have been around for many years although vocalist Sin only joined in fairly recent times. Once again her voice was in fine fettle and their songs held the audience. They were even joined OnStage by Special Guest Patrick .... All too soon they were gone and Amalgamation 2009 was coming to an end. It had been a really enjoyable Event with a good mix of Bands and everyone whom we met was very friendly. Joel plans on doing it again in 2010 ; I will most likely be back and suggest it's an Event that is well worth checking out.A.W.
DEPECHE MODE.LG Arena Birmingham. 13 Dec. '09.
Over a very long career Depeche have carried a large hardcore fanbase with them - and their strong live shows are a big factor in this loyalty. There is a real sense of anticipation as the lights go down and an almighty roar greets the Band. Starting with the first 3 songs from their new Album was a brave choice and one that meant that things didn't really get into full swing until the crowd immediately recognised the opening bars of 'Walking In My Shoes'. This was followed by 'It's No Good' and things were off and running ...
I'd not seen The Mode for many years and I can report that Mr Gahan still looks pretty good !!! We had Standing tickets and were able to get into an excellent position. Behind the Band was a vast Video Wall that was used to very good effect throughout.
The audience were really into it and there was a good atmosphere - not something that is always the case at big Arena Gigs. Of course it's the old classics that go down the best. 'World In My Eyes' and 'Policy Of Truth' are great and they are followed by a storming 'I Feel You'. Dave seems to be enjoying proceedings and a crescendo is reached with a superb take on 'Enjoy The Silence' then a mass swaying of arms to 'Never Let Me Down Again'.
The Set had flown by which is always a good sign (unless it's the early 80's and you're at a Jesus And Mary Chain Gig as the Sets REALLY did fly by then as they were often only 25 minutes long ... LOL) and the inevitable encores follow. I don't think anyone would complain about the trio of 'Stripped' 'Behind The Wheel' and 'Personal Jesus' bringing things to a climax !!
I thoroughly enjoyed the Gig and Depeche seem to be proving that it is possible to be around for more years than you care to remember and still cut it live. Ironically when the dates were announced I didn't intend going as (1) I don't really like big Arena Gigs and (2) I thought tickets were a bit steep in price. What changed my mind was when I put on a Depeche Tribute Band - Speak + Spell - at Bedford in March '09. They were so good I thought bthat I had to go and see the real thing again. I'm glad that I did !!! (NB. Speak + Spell are BACK at Esquires, Bedford on Sat. 27th March '10.).
In Chains. Wrong. Hole To Feed. Walking In My Shoes. It's No Good. A Question Of Time. Precious. World In My Eyes. Insight. Home. Miles Away/The Truth Is. Policy Of Truth. In Your Room. I Feel You. Enjoy The Silence. Never Let Ne Down Again. Encores. Dressed In Black. Stripped. Behind The Wheel. Personal Jesus.
Interview with Alternative Electronic Band LAST JULY
You've just got back from playing at The Resolution as part of October '09 Whitby Goth Weekend. How did it go ?
Alix ; We didn;t really know what to expect from the Gig because it was all arranged very last minute and it was in the afternoon ... but lots of people came along to watch us. We got plenty of positive feedback afterwards which means a lot to us.
Dvae ; Last minute is right !! We were already going to Whitby when we were asked if we would be interested in playing - but we heard nothing else so assumed it wasn't on. Then suddenly the Gig was confirmed 2 days before we were leaving which left very little time to work on our new songs.
Alix ; We arrived in Whitby on the Wednesday afternoon and carried on rehearsing at the Appartment ; much to the amusement of the people we were staying with !!
Do you get nervous before a performance ?
Alix ; A little bit normally but not much if I am well rehearsed. Whitby is such a big Event - and it was only our second Gig - so it was a little nerve-wracking.
Dvae ; I don't think I get nervous - I'm always far too busy being impatient. After setting up and soundchecking I'm ready, excited and raring to go. I never like the wait to go on. It's a bit of a tradition for me to go and get something to eat. Sitting in the bar can be too relaxing and one drink can lead to another !! If I'm drunk I can't manage to work the electronics or select the right patches.
You're based in Cambridge. Is it easy to get Gigs in that area ?
Alix ; It's easiest if you book the Gigs yourself to be honest. There is a thriving music scene in Cambridge but it tends to be more Indie, Folk & Heavy Metal based. Technically there's a Cambridge University Goth Society but it seems to mainly defer to the RockSoc.- who are more into heavier styles of music. We lost one of our major Venues - The Boat Race - a few years ago and since then things seem to have died a little.
How long have you been together, and where did the name come from ?
Alix ; OK - you asked for it !! We met at va great Goth Club called The Coven in Luton in May '08. Throughout much of 2007 I'd been intending to go over one evening then in July that year Screaming Banshee Aircrew were playing. I really wanted to see them and set off in my van down to Luton. My plan was to spend the afternoon on Dunstable Downs. Unfortunately I didn't have a map wiyh me, got stuck in loads of traffic jams and got horribly lost. I ended up spending what little money I had on fuel then giving up and going home without ever getting to The Coven. Dvae on the other hand was sensible and took the train so he got to the Gig no problem. After we finally met in May I told this story to everyone who asked how we got together. It always began "Last July ..." which is where the name eventually sprang from !!
Dvae ; In a musical sense we only started working together in November '08. Alix & I starred in a low budget - er, make that no budget - horror movie our friend was making called 'Zombie Daytrip'. Although it never got finished some Bands such as Rome Burns and Cryogenica donated songs for the Soundtrack. I thought it would be great for us to have a go at writing a song for it too. I had a piece of music that I'd started years ago and Alix wrote the lyrics to it in the perspective of her character in the film. That's how 'Nothing Else But You' came about. We were surprised at the result and astounded by the sound we'd made together. We decided to start the Band there and then.
What are your thoughts on the current 'Goth' Scene and where do you see yourselves within this ?
Alix ; That is always a difficult question !! The Scene seems to be receiving an injection of new Bands recently - some from unexpected quarters such as the Artrocker Gigs in London and others from more traditrional Goth strongholds such as Leeds. Some Bands are coming back 'from the dead' to tour again and others like Grooving In Green are reforming with new members. So it's definately thriving ... even after all these years. We may not be exacvtly Goth in the sense that we don't have jangly guitars or brooding bass lines but if you look at all the different Bands from countries across the world that are accepted , listened to and loved by the Global Gothic Scene I think we definately have a place in there !!
Dvae ; What ?? My bass lines aren't brooding ?!? I'm obviously not trying hard enough !! People have been telling me that Goth Is Dead for the past 15 years or so, but none of them have been right so far. They may have got bored and moved on but the Scene is still here. Unlike other Scenes which are solely based on a certain time period, music or clubs Goth is much more varied and keeps evolving. It will be around for a long time to come.
The current overall Music Industry seems incredibly safe and boring. Who inspired you to originally become interested in music ?
Alix ; I think mainstream music will always seem a bit watered down compared to what's happening on the fringes. If you're trying to appeal to as many people as possible in order to make as much money as you can then your style is bound to be a bit ... MOR shall we say. I grew up listening to my parents music. When most kids had cassettes of nursrey rhymes I was listening to Aha, Pat Benatar & Jim Steinman !! Later on when I was a teenager my Parents paid for me to have singing lessons ... so I guess you can say they're mostly to blame for encouraging me !!
Dvae ; My earliest musical influence was Visage. I was so inspired by the atmospheres and soundscapes they created ; particularly on 'The Anvil' Album. I wanted to make music like them. But before that the reason I got into making music in the first place was because of my music teacher Mr Perryman. In our first class he had us playing The Eurythmics 'Love Is A Stranger' on all different instruments. He showed us how accessible music could be and before long I'd persuaded my Mum to buy me my first keyboard.
The Internet is obviously an important way of making your music accessible to people. Do you feel Bands giving away their music for free is a good or bad idea ?
Alix ; There's been this huge panic over the years about the Internet and the effect it's had on the Music Industry. I see how it can impact on the sales of CDsbut if I'm honest I think the main problem the major labels have is a lack of vision. Maybe they got away with selling mediocre pop to the lowest common denominator when people on the high street had no idea about the wealth of music available to them but the Internet has enabled those people to discover so much more variety than they used to hear. You can now preview a Band or an Album without having to put your hand in your pocket and I think that's really important. I spent so much money as a kid buying music because I liked the name of a Band or the cover of the CD - and was more often than not bitterly disappointed when I got it home. That just doesn't have to happen any more. The Internet has allowed many 'grass roots' Bands to have a voice that's often as loud as more Mainstream Acts - which has created a much more level playing field. I've heard so many up and coming Bands on their MySpace Pages, then spent money going to see them live and buying their merchandise. Some of them I might never have heard of if I hadn't heard their music Online ....
Dvae ; I think it's a good idea. For example, that's how I first got into The Birthday Massacre. I came across their WebSite by accident one day ; I don't think they actually meant to give away their MP3s but the Site wasn't coded properly !! I played hose songs to death.
Are there any new Bands out there that interest you ?
Alix ; There's a few both new and older that inspire me. I really love the stage presence and energy of Screaming Banshee Aircrew. Their shows are as theatrical as musical and I love that. A new Band that inspire me are Helalyn Flowers. The Vocalist Nuemi Aurora is so alive and sexy when she performs. She's beautiful in every way. Sharon Den Adel from Within Temptation is probably my idol though. She's just so natural onstage. So gracious, and her voice is stunning.
Dvae ; Hmmm, Alix seems to know a different connotation of 'new' that I was previously unaware of !!! Anyway ... the only new Bands I've been listening to lately have been guitar based ones working in different directions to us. Not really anything I can take inspiration from musically. But saying that one of them - Grooving In Green (possibly stretching the word 'new' here myself !!!) do impress me with their ability to write a catchy sing-a-long chorus every time. That's something I'd like to accomplish with my song writing. Now I'm wondering why the last song I wrote had 3 verses and no chorus !!!!
How would you like to see things progress over the next 12 months or so ?
Alix ; Well, we're hoping to organise a lot more Gigs both locally and across the country if we can. I'd like to write some more material and maybe get an EP - or ... gasp ... - an Album out.
Dvae ; I'd just like to get out there and play ; get ourselves known. I don't expect to conquer the world or anything - but I want people to know that we're coming ...
To the centre of the City .... A Ryan Air flight (with VERY bumpy landing) followed by an hour+ on the coach and you have arrived. Central Leipzig, with 4 days of the fantastic W.G.T. ahead of you. It's a moment to treasure. My surroundings looked vaguely familiar ; was it really a year ago that I was here ??? I was staying in the same hotel as previously, and it was only a 15 minute walk from the Coach Station. I was travelling 'lite' this time. Drastic decisions had been taking prior to leaving home on Tee-Shirts ; for some reason it was The Sisters all the way this time (well, they had been superb when I'd seen them just a few months ago in London).
I checked in and quickly unpacked. It was probably 11pm by then but I didn't feel tired and felt like a beer. I found a nice bar downtown and had a couple of refreshing Pilsners then it was back to bed for some sleep (which you soon realise is at a premium over this packed weekend). Your bedtime generally gets later and later as the days go by ....
I awoke to see the sun shining through my window. A shower then off on the Tram to The Agra to collect my WristBand. Already the 'Black Invasion' was in evidence. I also picked up my Programme which would guide me from Venue to Venue over the next 4 days .... After grabbing something to eat I moved to Werk 2. There was quite a queue already and I got in just as the first Band - Panic Lift - were hitting the Stage. Judging by their accents they'd come over from the U S of A for this Event and I can report it was worth the trip. Plenty were dancing at the front to their brand of EBM ; Werk 2 seems to be just the place for these type of Bands. There was a great finish as they ended with a pretty slow version of Phil Collins 'In The Air Tonight'. SURELY the only Phil Collins song to get an airing at W.G.T. 2009 !!!!!
The variety on offer at Leipzig was immediately there for all to see as next up was Russian Trip Hop/Classical Goth Artist Leandra. She describes her songs as impressions of extreme situations - be that the case or not her voice sounded wonderful. Most of the audience were transfixed by her stunning delivery and style. A perfect contrast to Panic Lift ;W.G.T. is off and running .....
The heat was already being felt deep inside Werk 2, and I needed a refreshing beer. Accents from around the globe can be heard at Treffen, and I soon got chatting to someone from Spain. It's rare not to bump into someone keen to talk about music and their previous Festival experiences. Tempting as it was to remain at Werk 2, I had to now move on. The Agra beckoned .....
The main Venue of W.G.T. - and where the CampSite is based - The Agra always has a very interesting varied Line-Up of Bands. Never more so than tonight !!! 7.20pm and L'Ame Immortelle come onstage (you can rely on W.G.T. to run on time). This Austrian Band have been around for 13 years or so and from fairly near the start have featured the male/female vocal dynamics of Thomas and Sonia. The couple are the focal point of an excellent live show. Thomas blindfolds Sonia, and she appears lost in her own world. I didn't know their material prior to this performance but I was impressed.
The Hall was filling up towards the end of their Set, and was soon rammed to capacity. The reason ?? CombiChrist were on next .....
In the live arena they are a relentless proposition. Pounding beat after pounding beat dragging the audience into submission .... 'This Shit Will Fuck You Up' kicks off things in a style that continues throughout. No ballards for these guys. The crowd are going mad, and I thoroughly enjoy it. "I smell electro" shouts Andi, and it's time for the classic 'ElectroHead'. Are they playing 'live' ?? Does it matter that the Keyboardist knocks over his equipment towards the end - and the beats just keep coming ?? CombiChrist ; I guess you either love 'em or hate 'em !!!!!!
Next up were a Band most of the 'English Contingent' were very keen to see ; The Eden House. This collaboration has come together over a period of time. The core members are Stephen Carey (formerly of This Burning Effigy) and Tony Pettit (Fields Of The Nephilim) and they've just released their Debut Album 'Smoke And Mirrors'. The 'ElectroHeads' may have deserted The Agra but those that do remain are treated to a stunning performance by a Band playing only their 2nd ever Gig. TEH female Vocalists Evi Vine and Amandine Ferrari (unfortunately Julianne Regan wasn't in attendance) add georgeous vocals to the swirling beautiful music. Their haunting sounds drew people in, and it was an inspired show. Unfortunately they had to cut their set short, but already we'd seen enough to realise that this is a Band more than worthy of their reputation. They're playing Whitby Goth Weekend in October ; don't miss them !!!!
A seemingly late - but very welcome - addition to the Line-Up were Project Pitchfork ; the legendary German Outfit formed by Peter Spilles and Dirk Scheuber in 1991 9interestingly they picked the project's name by choosing a word at random from the dictionary !!!). I had seen PP at last years Amphi Fest when they were superb. Again tonight they were at the top of their game. Coming on at around 11.30pm their electronic beats certainly hit the spot with the large crowd that they'd attracted. Mixing tracks from recent Album 'Feel !' with older classics frontman Peter was loving it. The audience were dancing throughout and went into overdrive when 'Timekiller' was played as an encore. It was fairly late - or early in W.G.T. time !!! - when they finished. The Clubs of Leipzig were just getting going ... but you need to pace yourself at an Event such as this. It was time for bed.
I was staying at the Mercure Am Johanniplatz Hotel, which is fairly central. The Tram system makes this whole Festival so easy to get round ; your WristBand gives you free travel on the trams for the whole 4 days. Early afternoon and I visised the massive shopping market at The Agra.All things Goth can be purchased here !!! I managed to resist spending too much ....
The Parkbuhne was my next stop. A lovely Venue in the middle of a large Park, it's a wonderful place to spend a few hours. Zin were the first I saw. Apparently a local Band from Leipzig they were pretty good with a Vocalist who sounded not unlike Briam Molko. These were followed by Mono Inc. (from Hamburg). Again I wasn't familiar with them, but was quickly drawn in. The frontman put on a lively performance and surely 'Get Some Sleep' is a W.G.T. Anthem !!!
From here I moved to the deep and dark Mortizbastei Club - surely one of the very best Venues in Leipzig !!! Greifenkeil aren't just another 'Band Onstage' ; they combine vocals, dance and drama. Marshalled by Lord Athanor their current show centres on the 'Lost Control' Project. They are captivating, with The Lord acting as Master Of Ceremonies. The 3 dancers perfectly complement the music and when they cover 'She's Lost Control' it is without doubt one of the highlights of the whole weekend. For more information on their Goth For Earth Campaign visit www.goth-for-earth.com.
The evenings entertainment continued with Otto Dix - a Russian Darkwave Project. Consisting of a keyboardist and female vocalist they were great to follow Griefenkeil. Again the crowd responded very well.
Headliners were Illuminate - a German outfit who have been around for quite a few years. This was more of a 'traditional' Gig and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The Mortizbastei had provided a brilliant line-up !!! We were full of energy by now and made the 10 minute walk across to DarkFlower Club. You go down the stairs and are greeted by pumping Electro sounds and a packed Dancefloor. Drink prices were reasonable - 3 Euros for a large bottle of Becks. A great mix of tunes kept people dancing all night. I left at nearly 5am and things were still going strong .....
Sunday morning (you really do lose track of which day it is at W.G.T.) and I had another late breakfast - this time at Burger King !!!! From there I popped to DarkFlower where there was a VNV Pre-Album Release Party from 3pm. I got there at approx. 3.25pm ... and again the floor was full !!! Ronan and Mark were DJing their own tracks and looking very bright - especially considering they'd headlined at The Agra very late the previous evening. I would have liked to have seen them, but sometimes at this Festival you just have to make choices ; and it's good to get to some different Venues.
I made the fairly short trip to the Parkbuhne to be greeted by PainBastard - who sounded terrible. One guy jumping around 'singing' over a blasting noise. A few 'CyberHeads' were dancing with little enthusiasm. I gave them 20 minutes or so but there was no improvement whatsoever. Truly one of the worst 'Bands' I've ever seen !!!!
The rain was now coming down and I needed sanctuary. A Tram took me to Augusteplatz and the Market area of Moritzbastei. The weather had cleared up now and I spent a very pleasant hour or so listening to German Folk nusic and watching people drink Mead like it was going out of fashion !!!
I went inside the main Venue in time to catch A Spell Inside ; good Electro with a VNV-esque twist. Unbeknown to me the next 'Band' were Modcom, Ronan Harris' Side Project. Ronan and a few Computers ; a sure fire mix for a room full of shiny, happy, dancing people. The Set flew by with a few Guests' joining in from time to time. Excellent. The Beautiful Disease were up next, but I had to get to The Agra for the late show ...
There was a real sense of anticipation in the air ; could Peter Murphy live up to his legend ?? It was around 1.30am that Pete and his crew hit the stage to a heroes reception, and immediately the Band sounded excellent. The master looked good and his voice hit the spot. The new songs were very good then suddenly mid-set there was a hush and he did a fantastic version of 'Hurt'. Those of us present knew this was a special night. 'Too Much 21st Century' (standout track from 'Go Away White') soon followed. The audience were totally into it and after lenghty applause at the end of the Set Peter returned with guitar to give us 'Bella'. 'The Passion Of Lovers' was next and towards the end of that song he said 'She's In Parties'. Wow !!!! Another short break then it was grand finale time ; wearing hat and black boa he treated us to 'Space Oddity'. It must have been around 3.15am by the time he finally departed. Peter Murphy had been brilliant. What an experience for any Bauhaus fan ; the highlight of 2009 W.G.T. !!!!
The last day now beckoned ; it's impossible to say how quickly the time goes by at Leipzig. Another brunch then to the Parkbuhne for Tunes Of Dawn - who amazingly were all wearing White !!!! They had a Trad Goth type sound, with a bit of a Mission feel. That's fine by me, and I thought they were very good. Schock followed, and unlike a lot of German Bands they actually sung in German. I don't speak any German and it was interesting that in the first number it sounded as though the chorus was 'Crusty Bread'. Another sounded like 'Kiss Me, Lick Me, Drug Me' (perhaps that was what it was !!!!). They had quite a 'rock' sound that went down well with the crowd but wasn't quite my thing.
Lahanny had a fair few UK followers present. Sounding a bit like Lacuna Coil to me they were OK without being at all expectional. I moved to the market at Moritzbastei and had a couple of glasses of wine then went to Sixtina. It was around 6pm and things were warming up nicely. Beramid - a German 'Goth' Band - were on the small stage and the atmosphere was very friendly. Sitting watching them chatting and drinking you were totally aware of what an incredible all round Festival W.G.T. is. The vocalist ended the Set wearing a bra and pants that had been thrown at him !!!
A DJ playing bizarre techno followed. I had intended to see a couple of Bands elsewhere but time just flew by then a screen came down and 'Control' (in German) was shown. It is a superb film and the music spellbinding. By now we'd been joined by Leipzigs No. 1 Robert Smith lookalike and a girl whose friend had been in the film !!! The vodka was flowing ; Don't Walk Away In Silence ...
Sixtina was just around the corner from DarkFlower, and this seemed the perfect place to end our 2009 W.G.T. Plenty of dancing took us through to 3.30am ; a particular high was when 'No Time To Cry' was played !!!!
What a trip it had been. I had visited places I hadn't been to the previous year - and still I hadn't managed to get to When We Were Young !!!! W.G.T. is a MUST if you like anything 'Goth'. You can't fail to have just the very best time. Go once and you're hooked. Bring on next years Event !!!!!!A.W.
GRIFFONVOX presents GOTH FOR EARTH.
Think green, wear black, act creatively - under this motto Griffenvox place their enviromental activity. The performance project doesn't limit it's commitment for environmentalism to it's music, and campaigns as well with spectacular productions far from the limelight. That way street is becoming stage for the destruction-drama 'Control Lost'. The initiative is meant as a starting point for many other actions - by now the potential and creativity of the scene is sought after - activists and supporters wanted !!
Further information about the campaign is available at WWW.GOTH-FOR-EARTH.COM
PROFILE OF ATHANOR - Griffonvox ; formerly Griefenkeil
Where are you based and how would you describe your music ?
We are located in Berlin / Munich Our music is Electronic Wave with some additional spices nightshades from the Bavarian countryside, as well as some other abysmal additions. We are using analogue equipment, wrist watches, sirens and telephones, don't believe it, even light bulbs.... ;-)
How long have you been together for ?
Who with whom? I am with myself not so sure, since the Joker to over..... hmm The performance crew is working together already since several years, 5 years or so, and we are still in the process of expansion. So far we are 4 members: Lady A, Lady C and Lady E, the most principle antiaging vitamins, have found their ways to Lord Athanor, and we hope to add soon further vitamins to complete the mix.
If you could play a Gig at any Venue in the world, where would you choose and which 3 other Bands (past or present) would be on the bill ?
Locations: Cardiff or Edinburgh / Tokio or Hongkong would be great, but no US please.
Bands: Gary Numan, Bryan Ferry / Roxy Music, Elisabeth Frazer, Laurie Anderson, guess some older 4AD acts.
What are your favourite 3 Albums ever ?
David Bowie - Ziggy Stardust, Roxy Music - s/t, Eno / Byrne - My Life in the bush of ghosts
Top 3 songs of All-Time ?
Neon Judgement - Awful day, Joy Division - Atmosphere, Gary Numan - Down in the park
If you could get one musician to Guest on your next recording who would you choose ?
Perhaps William Shakespeare ;)
Actually we are still looking for a compatible lady singing & performing with us (seriously)
You performed at WGT '09 ; what are your thoughts on your Show & the Event?
Good, really really good! Although there were quite a few issues related to tech and the location, everything worked out fine with our performance. The audience was great but the location too small, since people had to stay outside.
In general, WGT 2009 was more peaceful than last year, quite inspiring.
Favourite Drink ?
Fantasy date for a night out ???????
Alice (from Wonderland), in company of the White Rabbit you know...., or perhaps even Snow-white....(without the dwarfs) with the latter the colour composition would fit better with us :-)
For more Information ; WWW.GRIFFONVOX.COM
HUSSEY IN HERTFORD.
Wayne Hussey played a Solo show at the Corn Exchange, Hertford on Thursday 29th January '09.
Myself, The Polar Bear, Rachel and a few other regulars including SlaveToLust were there to enjoy a brilliant evening.
Mr H was highly entertaining and on great form. We await his plans for the next year or so with interest.
WHITBY GOTH WEEKEND - October '08.
It was a pleasure to DJ The Spa on Halloween night !!! Resurex, Christian Death & Specimen played live, and I did Sets between the Bands then afterwards. Evil Stu was my Co-DJ and we had a great night playing to a crowd who kept dancing all night until the 3am curfew.
The whole weekend was superb. The WGW Pool Competition on the Saturday afternoon at The Met had a full turn out, and Neil 'The Polar Bear' Bawden took home the Jaffa Cakes.
Saturday evening at The Spa saw The Beauty Of Gemina and Voltaire turn in highly enjoyable Sets then Wayne Hussey headlined. It was just Mr H, a guitar, keyboard and a bottle of wine. He may not have been to everyone's taste, but for me and the others right at the front who had attended most of The Mission's farewell Gigs earlier in 2008 it was a real treat.
We savoured his versions of classics such as 'Wasteland', 'Tower Of Strenght' and my own favourite 'Like A Hurricane' ... hey, he even played 30 seconds or so of 'Marian' !!!
As per usual the next night Sexy Sunday was very busy, and as hot as a Sauna. ALWAYS a brilliant night.
Monday was a nice day of meeting and chatting with many people, then going to The Res for a Marilyn Manson Tribute Band and some Burlesque Dancers.
This WGW saw many 'Fringe' Events taking place, and these seemed to be very successful. There appeared to be more people in and around the town than at previous WGW's.
Whitby remains one of the very best weekends of the year. Roll on April '09 !!!
ANDY'S DJ SETS AT WGW.
Jessica - All Living Fear
Hunter - Dyonisis
Like An Animal - The Glove
Nobody Likes You When You're Dead - Zombina And The Skeletones
Shadows - Kindred Spirits
Somewhere Girl - The Opposite Sex
State Of Affairs - Manuskript
She's Not America - Devilish Presley
Chameleon - Passion Play
Adrenalin - Bauhaus
She - I Am No One
Follow Me Sister - Inertia
Fucked Up Generation - Death Ride 69
Zix Zix Zix - Velvet Acid Christ
Rain - The Cult
Walk Into The Sun - The March Violets
Ribbons - The Sisters Of Mercy
Love Like Blood - Killing Joke
Empty Eyes - History Of Guns
Love Action - The Human League
You Spin Me Round 9Remix) - Dead Or Alive
She's Lost Control - Joy Division
Assimilate - Skinny Puppy
April Skies - The Jesus And Mary Chain
One Hundred Years - The Cure
Israel - Siouxsie And The Banshees
Cars - Gary Numan
Bedsitter - Soft Cell
Master And Servant - Depeche Mode
Girls On Film - Duran Duran
Electrohead - Combichrist
N.W.O. - Ministry
Hit Me Hard - Noisuf X
AMPHI FEST 2009.
This is a GREAT weekend and well worth going to.
Fields Of The Nephilim have been confirmed to headline this Event.
CyberAndy & SmashedPete WILL be there .........
Amphi was first held in 2005, and has now become firmly established on the Gothic Scene. The first Amphi was held in Gersenkirchen and featured Artists such as Die Krupps, Project Pitchfork and Client. In 2006 it was moved to Tanzbrunnen, Cologne - and this is where it remains. It's a superb Venue. The capacity is approx. 12,000 and in 2008 it sold out.
Held on a Saturday and Sunday - along with plenty of 'Warm Up Parties' !!!! Bands playing over the last couple of years include Apop, VNV, ASP, Suicide Commando and Das Ich. Amphi has a Main Outdoor Stage plus an Indoor Theatre. There are also plenty of stalls selling clothes, CDs, food and drinks. The programme kicks off at lunchtime and runs until the early hours .....
Amphi attracts many visitors from England ; indeed from all over the world. The 2009 line-up stars the likes of Front 242, Fields Of The Nephilim, Liabach, Jesus On Extasy, Leather Strip, The Birthday Massacre and many more ....
Further down this WebZine you will find my Review of Amphi 2008. If this type of music is 'your thing' then you should DEF. put this Event on your list of MUST DO THINGS for 2009 !!!!!!www.amphi-festival.de
From 29th May - 1st June Leipzig is THE place to be for this incredible weekend. If you love all things GOTH then you should DEF. try to get to this Event !!!!!!www.wave-gotik-treffen.de/english
PROFILE OF DJ PSYCHE
DJ Psyche is playing April '09 Whitby Goth Weekend.
How long have you been DJing ? Since 2000
Where do you currently DJ ? Dead Letter Office, Monthly at The Orwell Bar, London
What are your Favourite 5 Albums of All-Time ?
Jane's Addiction, Nothing's Shocking
Nine Inch Nails, Pretty Hate Machine
David Bowie, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars
The Cure, Disintegration
Apoptygma Berserk, 7
Best Gig you have ever been to ? David Bowie at the Electric Ballroom (2500 person venue), Washington, DC, on my 25th birthday. I was *this close* to him. Swoon!
Favourite DJ ? Sexbat
Top 3 Floor Fillers ?
We all know those, don't we?
Sisters of Mercy - Alice
Nine Inch Nails - Sin
Front 242 - Headhunter
Favourite drink ? Diet Coke
Top Band of All-Time ? Oh good grief, I couldn't possibly narrow it down
If you could DJ one Venue anywhere in the world where would it be ?
Have to go with the Agra, Wave-Gotik-Treffen festival in Leipzig
Fantasy date for a night out ? A pumpkin drawn by six mice, a ball, a beautiful gown and slippers made out of glass. No, sod that, my feet would get sore.
Cryogenica is a London based, Anglo-Swedish electro-rock band comprising of three members: Carina - vocals, Jon - guitar, Chris - bass. They have been described as a myriad of industrial and electro with gothic vibes, influenced by Siouxsie Sioux, Nine Inch Nails, Portishead, Curve and The Birthday Massacre. The live set is technologically advanced, including ‘Ableton Live 7’ sequencing software to control a backing track with triggers, samples, synths and pads. Since their debut show at Madame JoJo’s in March 2007, the band performs regularly and is currently working on their second album.
Profile Of Vocalist Carina.
Carina with Richard from The Ghost Of Lemora.
How would you describe your bands music?
- A bit industrial, a bit electro, a tiny bit goth and I guess to put it simple = Rock! Jon wants to sound like Nine Inch Nails, Chris wants to go heavier and I'm very happy to have been described as Siouxsie-esque.
How long has your band been together?Who are your favourite band of all time?
- I met Jon 2.5 years ago and we found Chris about 1 year after that.
- Depeche Mode!
Top 5 albums ever?
- Rammstein - Sehnsucht
Nine Inch Nails - Pretty Hate Machine
Depeche Mode - can't choose!!
Siouxsie & The Banshees - Through the Looking Glass (the cover album I know, but I love it!)
White Zombie - SuperSexy Swingin Sounds
-Must be Hot Chocolate!
Top 3 songs of all time?
- Photographic - Depeche Mode (makes me feel so happy!)
Nineties - Star Industry (keep hearing it at the momenr and always have to dance when it comes on)
It Takes a Fool To Remain Sane - The Ark (gotta promote Sweden!)
Dream gig to play?
Whitby! hint hint... With Siouxsie Sioux headlining, Birthday Massacre, Das Ich and Cryogenica supporting.
Guest musician on your next album?
Ron Mael - need some brilliant keyboards on there!
- Vince Noir, think he would be quite amazing to have a night out with in Booshland...
BERLIN ;September '08.
I recently visited Berlin for the first time - and had a FANTASTIC trip. Max and I flew at a crazily early time in the morning from Luton Airport. The Dark Angel Of Luton had been kind enough to let us crash at her place prior to the flight. We had intended an early night, but a trip to the Pub lasted longer than planned then a few more drinks at the flat meant we had all of 2 hours sleep before the alarm went off at 4am !!!!! Max was still rock n roll enough to have a Bloody Mary with his breakfast whilst we were waiting to check in. I settled for a coffee ....
We safely landed then caught a train to central Berlin. Our hotel was only a 10 minute walk from the Station. I'd booked the East Side Hotel via the Internet, and what a find it was. Incredibly friendly staff, VERY laid back ('What time do you do breakfast until ?' ; 'Whatever time you want breakfast, we'll do it for you !!!') and in a great location - literally 100 yards from the largest remaining part of the Berlin Wall, which is now an open air Art Gallery.
We saw a bit of Berlin then early eve set off for the Columbia Club for the first night of 2 Killing Joke Gigs. The original Joke line up was back together, and they were superb at both Gigs. The first night was the first 2 Albums. Opening with Requiem, the pace was unrelenting throughout. Jaz was at his manic best, oh the madness in those eyes. Max felt that Youth looked like Pete Waterman, and found his white jacket a bit disturbing ....
The Columbia Club was an excellent small venue and we were able to get right to the front without being totally squashed. The Set flew by and at the end we were totally shattered and ready for a good long SLEEP (I did manage to grab a Set List as a souvenir).Breakfast was served at around midday by the most georgeous young lady ... Fully refreshed we did a bit of shopping, had a beer, found the Out Of Line Record Shop - where for the first time ever I saw a copy of the 'Unreleased' Sisters Of Mercy Album SSV for sale, tried to get into the Absinthe Bar - but it was SHUT !!!! ... then had tea at a non-Irish Irish Pub (Yes, we were confused too !!!).
Outside the Columbia Club we brought beers from a car, got chatting to some Polish people and a West Berliner who HATED the East Berliners - then again got to the front for another fantastic Gig (Pandemonium + Early Singles Set) by the mighty Killing Joke. NB. Youth wore a black shirt !!! Highlights are difficult to pick out as there were so many, but 'Love Like Blood' & 'Eighties' were just sooooo good .... It was around half past midnight as we left the Club, but the night was only just starting. We met the Polish guys again, who took us to a Turkish bar where drinking and singing took place. The owner insisted Max & I knock back a free giant vodka before we left. We then got dropped off at the K17 Club. It was pretty empty but we did some dancing and gave away some History Of Guns CD's for an hour or so.
We then got something to eat before ending up at somewhere called The Lux Club !!! A true Superstar DJ was spinning the tunes. Nobody was dancing so he started dancing, and everyone followed. I requested 'Heroes' by David Bowie, and got some strange cover version !!! Hey, at least I can say I had Heroes played for me in a seedy downtown bar in Berlin at 4 in the morning !!!! Eventually we staggered back to our hotel room at around 5.30am ....
The hotel had no strict check out time. We again had breakfast at around lunchtime - again served by THE lady. Then we checked out, saw a bit of the Berlin Wall, and caught our late afternoon flight back to reality !!!! It had been a totally brilliant trip. Everything went superbly. I want to live at the East Side Hotel in Berlin ............
PROFILE OF RICHARD (Vocalist with The Ghost Of Lemora)
How would you describe your Bands Music ?
- Goth Rock Pop.
How long has your Band been together ?
- We played our debut gig 5/9/2001 but Swifty and myself have been together at least 2 years before that.
Who are your Favourite Band of All-Time ?
Top 5 Albums ever ?
(in no particular order)
- Sisters of Mercy - "First and Last and Always"
Delicatessen - "Hustle into Bed"
XTC - "The Big Express"
Super Furry Animals - "Radiator"
the Cure - "Faith"
Favourite Drink ?
- Snakebite and Black or Jasmine Tea
Top 3 Songs of All-Time ?
An impossible question. These could easily change within the next five minutes. But, for now...
- Depeche Mode - "In Your Room"
Delicatessen - "CF Kane"
Whipping Boy - "When We Were Young"
Dream Gig to play ; Where in the world + which 3 other Bands ?
- The classic Sisters line up, Joy Division and Johnny Cash, and with that line up I don't care where we play.
If you could have one living Musician to guest on your next Album, who would you choose ?
- David Bowie
Fantasy Date for a night out ? (NB. Not allowee to say wife/husband/partner !!!!!)
- Stephen Fry
PROFILE OF JESUS HOOLIGAN
How long have you been together ?
Been together about 2 months
How would you describe your music ?
I call it TRIBAL PUNK, I like noisey things you can hit,drill or cut I also like punk and industrial music and i like songs you can make using your enviroment i.e lumps of wood,hammers and metal.
Top 5 Albums Ever ?
1. house of the mole by Ministry.
2.Sehnsucht by Rammstein.
3. Hole by Scraping Foetus Off The Wheel
4. Smell Of Female by The Cramps
5. Its Alive by The Ramones
Best Band of All-Time ?
Favourite Drink ?
Every drink is my favorite drink
Top 3 Tracks ?
Clothes Hoist by Foetus,
Warp City by Ministry
Death And Destruction by Ministry
Dream Gig to Play ?
Kit kat club in Bayswater circa late eighties with Killing Joke,Ministry and Foetus
One Musician to Guest on your Album ?
Uncle Al from Ministry cos i think he could handle a drink or two and he is a fucking nutter.
Fantasy Date ?Hope its not to boring cheers J.H.
My misses Kate cos i luvs her.
AMPHI FEST '08
This was the 4th Amphi, but my first ... I can only say I wish I'd gone to the other three !!!
Amphi takes place on a Saturday and Sunday in mid July ; I flew to Cologne early Friday morning, then found my Hotel without too much trouble. Friday evening we visited a very pleasant Russian Bar then went to a Club where Necessary Response came on at around midnight and played for around 45 minutes. The Club was open until 4am but having had a few Russian Vodkas earlier and with the whole weekend ahead of us, we 'headed for home' at around 1am.
Thus I was up and running (fairly) early on Saturday morning. The Tanzbrunnen Venue was only a 15 minute stroll away, and once there with little fuss we secured our Weekend WristBands. The Festival was Sold Out - around 12,000 people each day - but there were no massive queues to get in, and overall things seemed very well organized. My friends had been the last 2 years, which was helpful for getting around.
The Set-Up is superb - a Main Outdoor Stage and an Indoor Theatre ; both having full programmes running from 12.30 each day. We headed straight to the Theatre. It was 12.15pm, and I expected about 30 or 40 people to be there ... Much to my surprise the Venue was already pretty full, and by the time Noisuf-X arrived onstage the atmosphere was totally full on !!! Their half hour Set was very well received, and I will make a point of seeing them at Infest later this year.
The 2 man noise machine that is Nachtmahr followed, and Amphi '08 was all systems go !!! How the girls at the back of the Stage manage to stand totally still throughout the Set is beyond me - there was certainly plenty of movement in the audience, and I enjoyed them.
My one and only complaint about the whole Festival would be the crazy situation of the toilets in the Theatre. Once you visited, you were then considered to be 'outside' of the Theatre, so had to go and queue up again to get back in !!! It was generally VERY hot in there, so frequent drinks were needed. Surely this situation needs reviewing for '09.
There are plenty of varied food and drink stalls - along with lots of stalls selling CD's, Tee-Shirts, etc. The beers were quite expensive, but I think you just have to accept that at a Festival.
I went over to the Main Stage and caught Zeromancer. They may not have released an Album for 5 years, but their live reputation ensures a healthy sized crowd. Kicking off with 'Need You Like A Drug' they drew me in and I stayed until they finished - which I hadn't planned to do. Highlights were 'Clone Your Lover' and the closing 'Fade To Smack'.
It was only a 2 or 3 minute walk from the Main Stage to the Theatre, and I mainly found the queues not too bad. The scheduling meant only a short break between Bands, and time slots seemed to be kept.
Thus Ashbury Heights were soon doing their stuff inside. The duos version of Synthpop hit the spot for me, even if the vocals were a bit dodgy. Hey - if you look like Yasmine then that's OK by me !!!! I needed a drink now. Backstage with Yas would have been ideal .....
Wandering around a few stalls I caught some of Zeraphine. They sounded OK but nothing special.
Rotersand in the Theatre were superb. They had a very large crowd watching them, and played a storming Set.
I then made my way to pretty near the front just as Covenant came on. I'd seen them earlier this year in The Agra at WGT. They were good but we were a long way back. Here, being very close I thought they were superb. Joakim Montelius was using crutches, having hurt his leg in the Amphi Cup Football Tournament on the Friday !!! After a build-up, vocalist Eskil appeared, and it was straight into 'Monochrome' Keyboardist Daniel had rushed from the Theatre where he'd been playing with his other Band Haujobb ; a busy day for him ... New tracks mixed with old favourites such as 'Stalker' and 'Dead Stars'. A strong performance from an excellent Band.
A cool refreshing Kolsch then to the Headliners in the Theatre ; Combichrist. Andi was a non-stop ball of energy throughout. A packed VERY hot Theatre was moving to the beat. The pace didn't let up at all, and the crowd loved it. 'This Shit Will Fuck You Up' indeed !!! A great way to end a fantastic day.
There were AfterShow DJ's still to come, but I was shattered and needed my bed !!! After all, Amphi was only at the half way stage ....
"Sunday morning - let's the dawn in" as The Velvet Underground once sang ... I don't know about the dawn, but by midday I was ready for battle.
Cinema Strange drew a fair crowd in the Theatre. Their brand of 'Art-Rock', or whatever you want to call it, was a nice variation on the Electro - and they went down well.
New to Amphi this year was the 'Beach Area' ; a chance for black clad Goths to chill in a deckchair by The Rhine. I'd intended to get there for a cocktail today, but after buying a couple of CD's and having a beer I realised Suicide Commando would be soon hitting the Main Stage.
I got into a good position, and there was a real sense of anticipation in the air. There were some showers around, but the large 'upturned mushrooms' covering a fair sized area at the front did the job.
Johan appeared with the S.C. Gang, and it was a real mosh pit as 'Bind, Torture, Kill' kicked in. I'd never seen them live before, and they more than lived up to my expectations. The visuals on the screen tied in well with the music, and Johan was putting plenty of effort in. Pounding beat followed pounding beat. The crowd responded and the Set whizzed by. If memory serves me correctly. 'Hellraiser' brought things to a suitable climax. Suicide Commando - if you get the chance to see them don't miss it !!!!
Now it was straight into the 2nd part of a great 'double-header' ; Project Pitchfork. Many of us in England had been bitterly disappointed earlier this year when a Gig in Birmingham was pulled at late notice. Seeing them in Germany more than made up for that. They seemed really up for it, and were brilliant. 'Timekiller' was a moment !!! Pitchfork played for just over an hour (again'The Mushrooms' came in handy) and all too soon they were gone.
Headliners on the Main Stage were And One. I needed another Kolsch by now, and ended up also buying a couple more CD's ... >From a distance And One sounded OK, but no more than that. It seemed bizarre hearing them play 'Timekiller' just after we'd had the 'real deal' !!!
In the Theatre Diary Of Dreams had been playing. My friends caught them, and really enjoyed it.
I made my way to the Theatre for one last time. The Aftershow was just starting, and at approx. midnight Die Krupps hit the stage. A packed crowd spent the next hour or so using up any spare energy that they had left after such a hectic weekend !!! It was - to quote Robert Smith - 'Hot, Hot, HOT' and Die Krupps kicked up an unrelenting storm. Inevitably highlights have to be 'To The Hilt' and a stunning 'Fatherland' What a song that is. A truly ballistic end to an amazing weekend (although for the totally hardcore / deranged the DJ's would keep going for another couple of hours or so .....).
AND I hadn't even managed to get to The Beach !!!!
To sum up ; if you like your EBM/Electro/Industrial then you get it in spades at Amphi. A really well run Festival at which you can see plenty of excellent Bands, meet loads of people, buy some cheap CD's - all for a weekend price of approx. 55 Euros.
After The Amphi is before The Amphi ; the '09 Event is already confirmed for 18 & 19 July and Front 242, Unheilig and Panzer AG are already on the line-up.
If you've not been before, it should DEF. be on your schedule ... I for one will be there !!!ANDY WEBSTER.
System:FX formed in East London one drunken evening. An excuse to put our views and noise across to anyone who'd listen! Steve has been involved in the music industry for over 25 years mostly playing guitar in the Grindcore scene during it's early days in the late 80's/90's, having great success with Axegrinder. Having felt a change of direction he started up an electronic industrial project, joined by Debs on drums and Mike on vocals. The band started rehearsals in early 2007 and spent most of the year writing material in the studio. In Jan 2008 we played our debut gig in Camden. Since then we've been gigging as much as possible all over the country. Supporting such acts as Panzer AG(Combichrist side project), Deviant UK and in Sept playing with 32crash(Front242 front man Jean-Luc de Meyer) at Slimelight, London. We may not set the world alight but we'll certainly being there playing the backing track for it.
PROFILE OF SYSTEM:FX.
How would you describe your Bands sound ? Probably get three different descriptions but I like techno-punk :)
How long have you been together ? Long time friends but as a band for just longer than a year
Who are your favourite Band of All-Time ? Atari Teenage Riot, Ministry or NIN
What's the Best Gig you have ever been to ? NIN/PIG '94 Kentish Town Forum
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ?
Atari Teenage Riot/Delete Yourself
Aphex Twin/Richard D James LP
FLA/Tactical Neural Implant
Favourite drink ? Jagermeister
Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ?
Tanz Mit Laibach/Laibach
If you could have any Musician guest on your next Album, who would it be ?
Richard D James or Alec Empire
Where in the world would your 'Dream Gig' be, and which 3 other Bands would play ?
I'll say Castle Party, Bolkow as the venue is still fresh in my mind...a medieval ruined castle in Poland near the Czech border. I'd have Oribtal, ATR and Skinny Puppy playing with us as they are all fantastic live and that would be a great mix of styles!
Who is your 'Fantasy Date' for a night out (NB. You're NOT allowed to say husband / partner !!!!) ?
Belladonna, if you don't know who she is then a Google search should suffice (just not at work....)
How would you describe your Bands sound ? Cockney Body Music, ha haaa!
How long have you been together ?
As a band, just over a year, though Steve and I have been friends with Mike for ages (and Steve and I have been a couple for 12 years!)
Who are your favourite Band of All-Time ?
I’ve liked Depeche Mode since I was a kid, Nine Inch Nails changed my entire musical tastes when I was 16, but Rotersand own me now!
What's the Best Gig you have ever been to ?
The Alfa Matrix show in Sint Niklaas, December 2006... Disconnekted, Monolith, Ayria, Implant and 32Crash’s first ever live show! Getting to meet all the bands backstage (including Jean-Luc de Meyer from Front242, wow!) was a big bonus too!
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ?
NIN/Pretty Hate Machine
Rotersand/Welcome to Goodbye
Depeche Mode/The Singles (both!)
Nitzer Ebb/That Total Age
System:FX/High Definition Violence (shameless self-promotion, heh heh!)
Favourite drink ? Baileys
Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ?
Rotersand/Dare To Live
Theme music to the Littlest Hobo, ha haaaa! Nah, probably Closer by Nine Inch Nails
If you could have any Musician guest on your next Album, who would it be ?
Jennifer Parkin from Ayria... the most awesome female vocalist!
Where in the world would your 'Dream Gig' be, and which 3 other Bands would play ?
The Agra Hall in Leipzig on WGT weekend, along with Implant, Rotersand and Grendel (current music tastes showing strongly here!)
Who is your 'Fantasy Date' for a night out (NB. You're NOT allowed to say husband / partner !!!!) ?
Uhhhhh... Angelina Jolie probably!
How would you describe your Bands sound ? Electronic/Industrial with a slight punk edge
How long have you been together ? A little over a year though we’ve all been friends for many years
Who are your favourite Band of All-Time? Depeche Mode, NIN, The Ruts, Kate Bush
What's the Best Gig you have ever been to ? NIN at the Astoria (2 nights in a row)
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ?
NIN/Pretty Hate Machine
The Ruts/The Crack
Ministry/The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste
Rotersand/Welcome to Goodbye
Favourite drink ? A good German lager
Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ?
Kate Bush/Army Dreamers
If you could have any Musician guest on your next Album, who would it be ?
Rascal from Rotersand or Jennifer Parkin from Ayria
Where in the world would your 'Dream Gig' be, and which 3 other Bands would play ?
In Japan, with Rotersand, Implant and Ayria
Who is your 'Fantasy Date' for a night out (NB. You're NOT allowed to say husband / partner !!!!) ?
Jennifer Parkin (Ayria)
'ACEDIA' - HISTORY OF GUNS.
History Of Guns terrifying 3rd Studio Album.
Confrontational, angry and bleak lyrically, Acedia also manages to be contrastingly touching and melodic without a hint of the pantomime that often comes with Bands who consider themselves to be 'dark'.
The Album is filled to the brim with a reasoned and intelligent nihilistic hatred that is both moving and darkly fascinating.
A cruel, relentless work of experience, of feeling and of humanity.
The Album is available NOW for £10 from www.onlineout.com
HISTORY OF GUNS '09 TOUR.
Sat. 14 Feb. The Dark Room, Giffard Arms, Wolverhampton
Sat. 21 Feb. 'Electro/Punk;1', Esquires, Bedford
Sat. 28 Feb. Portland Arms, Hove
If you would like History Of Guns to play your Club, then make contact via www.myspace.com/cyberandydj
THE SEX PISTOLS.
11 June '08. Birmingham Academy.
I have been to many, many fantastic Gigs over the years and to 'Do A Nick Hornby' and pick your Top 5 EVER is impossible BUT .... this is DEFINATELY in my Top 5 !!!!!
The only time I'd seen The Pistols before was on a brilliant day in '96 - the first time they reformed. It was at a packed Finsbury Park with a Line-Up of The Buzzcocks, Stiff Little Fingers and Iggy amoungst others. The sun shone all day and The Pistols were great.
I never thought I'd get the chance to see them at a Venue such as this. No Support Band, and at about twenty to nine old Punk Classics such as 'London Calling', 'No More Heroes' and 'Teenage Kicks' get a better reception from the already packed crowd than many Headline Bands I've seen have got !!!
The lights dim, and 'There Will Always Be An England' plays through the PA. And then they appear - if England had won the World Cup and were in front of us with the Trophy they wouldn't have got a better response !!
"Remember - We're your friends, not your enemies" states Lydon, and the intro to 'Pretty Vacant' kicks in. BEDLAM !!! The whole of the downstairs of The Academy is packed like sardines, and jumping up and down as one.
Steve Jones looks as though he's just finished The Euro 2008 Pie Eating Competition. Glen & Paul look OK ; Lydon looks superb, and the voice remains THE voice .... The sheer verve and energy John puts in is incredible, and he LOVES IT. Constant banter with the crowd ; "We're not bad for a bunch of old guys are we ??", and he pulls the full range of Albert Steptoe faces !!
The songs STILL sound superb ; 'Liar', 'Did You No Wrong', a reworked 'Belson' which becomes 'Baghdad Was A Blast' !?!
Had everything not fallen apart way back when - would they have had another classic Album in them or not ??? We will never know ....
The heat is seering - you can SEE IT !!!!! Everyone in the crowd knows EVERY word to EVERY song. Johnny even leads a sing-a-long of 'I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside' before uttering the immortal line 'Cheap Holidays In Other Peoples Misery' as 'Holidays In the Sun' explodes.
The atmosphere is amazing throughout. 'No Fun' is fantastic then - if memory serves me correctly - 'Problems' (the problem is YOU) rounds off the Set.
"Give me 5 minutes to put my head in a bucket of ice" is Mr Lydon's parting shot !! On return he jokes about 'being winded' and thanks everyone - then it's 'God Save The Queen' and 'E.M.I.' Still the crowd bounce as one.
The Pistols take their exit, although we all know it's not quite the end just yet ... 'She Was A Girl From Birmingham' and it gets even more frenzied (if that were possible) for 'Bodies' then inevitably 'Anarchy' follows. And the crowd go MAD !!!
The reaction at the end is genuine and sustained. Everyone realised that they'd just been part of something TOTALLY SPECIAL. Not just watching, but a REAL PART OF IT. When old Bands reform you worry it will just be a take the money and go through the motions exercise. THIS WAS THE TOTAL OPPOSITE ....
The ORIGINAL Sex Pistols Line-Up COULD play. John Lydon was, is and probably always will be THE greatest Front Man to a Band. In some ways, he REALLY DID change the world !!!!
... The Academy feels like an over-heated sauna. Some people take their Tee-Shirts off and are wringing them out !!! It's like they've been out in the pouring rain.
Long after 'Anarchy' has ended people are still applauding and calling for more. Ever Get The Feeling You've Been Cheated ? NOBODY who was there last night left with that feeling ...
WAVE GOTHIK TREFFEN '08.
9-12 May. Leipzig.
Forgive me father for I have sinned ... I have never attended W.G.T. until now !! So many people had told me how good it was, and yet nothing can properly prepare you for the total experience that is this Festival.
We - along with many others - boarded the 9.50am flight from Stanstead on a sunny Friday morning, and a couple of hours later landed at what is surely one of the smallest airports in the world .... It was then a 80 minute coach ride into central Leipzig. The sun was still shining (hey, it didn't stop for all the 4 days). Maybe not very 'Goth, but we didn't care ; those big black coats wouldn't be needed this time.
A taxi then took us to the Hotel where we quickly unpacked and then headed off to try to find a Number 11 Tram. The Number 11 is crucial to your stay in Leipzig !! We found our way to the main Agra area and exchanged our tickets for wristbands without any hassle at all. You also receive a vital very detailed map with the locations of the many venues participating in W.G.T. and on the back timings of which Bands are performing and when. It is at this point the scale of things hit you - already we'd heard accents from all around the world and now we realised there were 25 or 30 venues to choose from !!!
Some 'Pre-Planning' is definately a good idea - there is simply no way you can do or see everything .... A couple of weeks before the festival 9and it truly is a Festival) the excellent W.G.T. WebSite had listed which Bands were playing where. This had enabled us to grade things into definates. maybes and possibles !!
You also need 'a bit of luck' in getting round, and in the main I am glad to say we had this. The first Band we wanted to see were Santa Hates You - Peter Spilles from Project Pitchfork's offshoot. These were on at 6.20pm in the Werk II Hall, and we got there just as they were about to come on. Even at this time the venue was pretty full and there was an excellent atmosphere. The Band were really good. Hey, our W.G.T. was up and running ... Outside the Werk were plenty of food and drink stalls, and it was nice sitting having a cold beer and chatting to lots of new people.
It was then back to the main Agra Hall - a hugh Aircraft type hanger. There was quite a queue to get in ; indeed this proved to be our biggest queue of the 4 days. We had arrived just as the very popular Das Ich were coming on. Once inside it was all a bit disorienting ... just where were the toilets ???
The CampSite area is situated within the Agra grounds. What fantastic value a W.G.T. ticket is. Approx. £50 and this includes entry to all Music, Film & Club events, Camping if you want it AND all your Tram travel around Leipzig.
With typical German efficiency the Bands seemed to keep almost exactly to the timings listed, and there were only fairly short gaps between the Bands.
Incredibly Sigue Sigue Sputnik (!?!) were on next. We caught the last 3 or 4 songs, including a cover of 'Ziggy Stardust'. They got a good reaction, and some German guys we got talking to the next day said seeing Sputnik had been a total high for them - well, there's no accounting for taste I suppose ...
Such is the nature of W.G.T. that 4 people could go seperately, not meet each other once and have entirely different experiences !!! Unheilig followed, and they were superb. I didn't really know their material but was immediately drawn in. They got the crowd going and put on a great show.
The same has to be said of Blutengel who were headlining. Icy cold vocals with great theatricals. My first live encounter with Blutengel most definately won't be my last. Indeed on the Saturday morning we bumped into them at their hotel, and Chris was more than happy to sign autographs and have photos taken. Treffen is just full of meetings such as this - all of which adds to the experience. Trams are so interesting ; one night it was like being in a Club with New Order & Dead Or Alive blasting out from someones Stereo !!
It's interesting exploring the different venues. The outdoor Parkbuhne was brilliant - fairly small in a great setting. You get to it by walking through the Park, and past the Gothic Picnic. It was here that we saw End Of Green, Jesus On Exctasy Tactikal Sekt and Neurotic Fish- who put in a great performance for what was apparently their last ever Gig.
At W.G.T. you are never far from something or other ; the music plays on, the bars stay open and trams rammed full of Goths keep running. You could easily stay out until 6am each morning if you had the energy !!!
Covenent headlined on the Saturday night and were brilliant. It was then off to the Club at Agra 4.2 ; Peter Spilles was doing a DJ slot. It was pretty busy, and a superb time was had dancing to Electro & EBM until around 4.30am !! Things were still going strong when we left ...
Whatever genre of 'Goth' is your thing you will find something to cater to your taste in Leipzig. In the other main Agra Hall there is a massive market which gives you plenty of chance to spend lots of your Euros !!!
On the Sunday morning we managed to get to the Medieval Village. Lots going on there with food and alcohol to keep you going !!!
From the Neurotic Fish gig we got back to the Agra just as London After Midnight were coming onstage. They suffered with 'technical' problems but still got a pretty good reaction. I had expected a bit more from them ; maybe it was that for me they were a mere warm-up for the highlight of the whole thing ....
I was a bit worried ... I'd not been able to get to Fields London Gig in May '07 due to having my tonsils out, and had heard very varied views. All my fears however very quickly disappeared. Fields more than lived up to my hopes (and I'd seen them plenty of times 'back in the day').
Carl's voice was fantastic and the rest of the Band seemed to gell. Perhaps playing a few recent Gigs had helped. The atmosphere at the front was electric as Classics such as 'Dawnrazor' & 'Moonchild' mixed naturally with 'Straight To The Light'. From 1am til they finally finished with fantastic encores of 'Preacher Man' and 'Last Exit For The Lost' at 2.30am the feeling was one of pure elation. Sitting outside at 3am having a beer never felt as good. Fields had been totally awesome !!!! Everyone I spoke to over the rest of the weekend seemed to agree ....
Fields Set List.
Shroud, Straight To The Light, Penetration, Dawnrazor, Moonchild, Trees Come Down. Requiem, Watchman, Zoon, Mourning Sun. Encores ; Preacher Man, Last Exit For The Lost.
All too soon it was our last day. We found an Irish Pub for an English Breakfast - then we had our one major travel disaster. We got on the right Tram, but it was going in the wrong direction !! Thus we missed Deviant UK. By default I then came across a most pleasant Market area with a Folk Band, food and cold beers. Such is the beauty of Treffen ; you can stumble across hidden treasures at any turn.
The evening was spent at The Kohlrabizirkus drinking Vodka and dancing to Nachtmahr, Absolute Body Control and the brilliant Die Krupps. Krupps finishing their Set with 'The Fatherland' was another total moment. And so at probably around 2.30am - hey, an early night - we rolled back to our Hotel. It had been a TOTALLY INCREDIBLE 4 days !!!!
All I can say is we merely scratched the surface of W.G.T. If you are into 'Goth' then this is something you should most definately experience at least once in your life. Although if you go once ... Roll on Wave Gothik Treffen 2009 !!!!!!!ANDY WEBSTER.
WGT GOTH FESTIVAL 2008.
- Title: 17th Wave-Gotik-Treffen
- Date: 9th - 12th of May 2008
- Town: Leipzig, Germany (at more than 20 venues, spread all over the city), camping site and main venue at the edge of town at the "agra-fairground" Markkleeberg (a location plan will be published on our internet page within the next weeks); for information on the city you may check http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leipzig.www.wave-gotik-treffen.de/english/
- Confirmed artists: See "Bandselection" at our internet page
- Music styles: All kinds of dark music: Gothic; EBM; Industrial; Ambient; Neofolk; Synthpop, Goth-Metal etc.
- Camping: Possible with "Obsorge" ticket, limited up to 9999 tickets for 21,- Euro (includes advance sale charges), contains the following service-package: · Camping at the Treffen-Campground (agra-fairground) · Silver Disc (Compact Disc) "Artists at the 17th WGT" · "Pfingstbote" ("Whitsun-herald") - the Treffen-program-book Please note: Entrance to and use of the campground is impossible without an "Obsorge" ticket. The "Obsorge" ticket is only valid in connection with the Treffen-Event-Ticket.
- Parking: For car parking at the main venue of the Treffen-area you have to purchase a Parking Vignette for 15,- Euro (includes advance sale charges). Please note: Parking at the Treffen-area (agra-fairground) is definitely impossible without a Parking Vignette.
- Capacity (expected number of visitors): about 20000
- Advance ticket sale: 4-days ticket for all events within the 17th Wave-Gotik-Treffen Whitsun 2008, 58,- Euro in advance ticket sale (including advance sale charges), available via "Ticket Order" at our internet page. The Treffen ticket includes free use of public transportation (tram, city-busses, regional trains, surburban trains) within the zone 110 of MDV ("Mitteldeutscher Verkehrs Verbund") from 2008-05-09 12.00h to 2008-05-13 12.00h (without special routes)
- Infoline: 0049-341-2120862
- Photos: See "Photogallery" at our internet page
- Description: Like every year on Whitsun the next Wave-Gotik-Treffen (the 17th !) will take place in Leipzig / Germany from 9th to 12th of May. Since many years we've been celebrating the Treffen as a big gathering of the "dark family". It is the biggest gathering of its kind worldwide.
All over the city we´ll have more than 150 bands, projects and single artists, performing on about 20 stages. Our events take place for instance in the vaults of the Moritzbastei, in the splendid neo-antique cupola hall of the Volkspalast, in the crypt of the Völkerschlachtdenkmal, a famous monument of the battle of 1813, as well as in large concert halls. Once more we´ll cover the whole wide range of Gothic-music: from Electro-Pop to Goth-Metal, from EBM to Neofolk, from medieval music to Industrial. However, traditionally we are at times contrasting the crazy Gothic stuff by including some classical music as well. This year it is twice getting tragic: our guests may visit Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata at the opera or experience pure melancholy with Franz Schubert's Winterreise.
From its beginning the Wave-Gotik-Treffen has been much more than a music festival: Our guests may switch back to the romantic atmosphere of ancient times at the medieval market place and a at pagan village, we will have authors reading, unusual theatre and cinematic performances will take place. One of the big halls on agra-fairground (the wide place of the German agricultural fair) will turn into the biggest Gothic-warehouse of the world for four days. DJs from all over the world will let you celebrate unforgettable special parties until dawn. There will also be a large fetish party where entrance is only possible following a strict voluptuous dress code.
A cheap and entertaining accommodation is the huge Treffen camping ground. To enter, you need a special ticket (we call it "Obsorgekarte") which includes also the extensive WGT-program-book with a CD featuring some of the artists who will perform. The public transport in the city is free for all WGT-guests.
The inhabitants of Leipzig are familiar with the Treffen since 16 years. You will be welcome here. The most fascinating thing during the Wave-Gotik-Treffen is the unique atmosphere that covers the whole city. Gothics from all over the world are celebrating their gathering peacefully and with relish, turning Leipzig into a diverse black. Once a year about twenty thousand Gothics are coming home: to the Wave-Gotik-Treffen.
We would be happy to welcome you in Leipzig too. Visit the Treffen - your friends from all over the world are already there!
If you subscribe to our newsletter at http://www.wave-gotik-treffen.de/english/ you will always get informed quickly about the latest WGT-news.
Andy will be going to the WGT Festival in Leipzig for the first time in 2008 !!
Confirmed Bands include Fields Of The Nephilim, Blutengel and the mighty Deviant UK.
This takes place from 9 - 12 May, and promises to be THE weekend of the year.
If you are going to this Event then send me a Message at www.myspace.com/CyberAndydj
THE BEAUTY OF GEMINA.
The Beauty Of Gemina are a 3 piece Goth/Industrial/Electro Band from Switzerland. They Headlined the Moritzbaster Venue at Wave Gothik Treffen 2008 on the Friday night, and I caught up with Vocalist & Songwriter Michael Sele the next morning ....
Michael confessed that a while before they went on he was a bit worried as the Venue was virtually empty. This situation rapidly changed, and by the time they came on it was completely Sold Out !!
This was their first Gig in Germany, so obviously it was an important moment for them. Everything went well, and Michael was very pleased with the crowd reaction. The German Market is crucial with this genre of music, and they have a German Distribution deal.
Gemina played in London October '07, but the UK Market seems to be forever in decline. There were however quite a few English people at the Moritzbaster, and Michael hopes to do more UK Gigs before the end of '08.
Michael works Part-Time in Computer Programming, but the Band are his pride and passion. Previously he was in New wave Group Nook. The Beauty Of Gemina released their excellent Debut Album 'Diary Of A Lost' in 2007 (available on Monkey.Music) and are currently putting the final touches to New Album 'A Stranger To Deal' - which should be released in August '08.
Michael admits that he gets nervous before a Gig, but once onstage feeds of off the adrenaline rush and is able to enjoy it - despite describing himself as 'A Perfectionist' who after any Gig is always chewing over all of the small things that went wrong !!!
He very much apprechiates those people who come and see the Band live, and likes to mingle with the audience after a Gig to get their feedback.
"I have many Influences" he says "but it was David Bowie who inspired me to get involved in Music. If there was one song I would love to cover it would be 'Ashes To Ashes'."
Unsurprisingly Michael includes a Bowie Album - 'Outside' - amoungst his favourite Albums of All-Time. Others include 'OK Computer' - Radiohead, 'Pornography' - The Cure, and 'Dark Side Of The Moon' - Pink Floyd. He also professes a love of Bjork and The Mission.
As an Artist Michael finds it frustrating how people can illegally download his work for free on the Internet. "It's OK for millionaires like Radiohead to give stuff away, but when you're struggling ..."
Another frustration is the total lack of any Radio play in his native Switzerland. Gemina have a following in Zurich, but no Stations play 'Goth' type music.
The reaction was generally positive to the Debut CD, and Michael has high hopes for 'A Stranger To Deal'.
All too soon it is time to go. Michael Sele is an intelligent person who is obviously totally committed to The Beauty Of Gemina. They are a Band that are well worth investigating both on CD and in the live arena. Let's hope they get back over to England sooner rather than later !!!
'GOTH'S NOT DEAD - 24th MOMENT ; THE SEQUEL'
Fields Of The Nephilim Convention Weekend,
23/24 May '08.
The DarkRoom, The Giffard Arms, Wolverhampton.
To most people 'Goth' was a short lived Youth Cult in the mid-eighties that quickly died a death .... To others it will Forever Remain.
Dawnrazor is the Internet's biggest Fields Forum, and they organized this event. Why Wolverhampton I hear you cry ?? Well - dotted around the country are quite a few Clubs that hold regular Goth Nights, mainly run by dedicated music loved souls. The DarkRoom is one such place - hosted by the magnificent 'Wild Bill Buttock'.
Thus the black clad hordes gathered for some fun - yes, contrary to popular opinion Goths Do Have Fun !! Lots of it in fact ...
Of all the 80's Goth Bands Fields Of The Nephilim retain their place in the hearts of many. Others such as Andrew Eldritch have openly bitten the hand that feeds ; this has never been the case with The Neph. Interest has been renewed recently by Vocalist Carl McCoy returning as 'Fields Of The Nephilim' - despite no other Original Members featuring.
The Dawnrazor weekend included 3 of the Originals - 2 now with Last Rites and Tony Pettit in NFD. The 2 days were a mix of Bands, Goth Sets from DJ's and on the Saturday afternoon a DVD showing of a few songs from Fields recent Gig in Finland. Amazingly there were wild cheers as the DVD was shown ...
No good Goth Gathering is complete without plenty of Arms In The Air Moments - and this was no exception. The atmospheric DarkRoom was packed to the rafters and the Dance Floor full. Friends both old and new mixed, chatted and danced like it was 1985 all over again ....
The Bands were all very well received, with NFD probably being the pick, and they were all happy to chat at the bar after their Sets. If an alien had zoomed into The Giffard Arms from Outer Space, he/she would certainly have been completely bemused by what was occuring !!!
Just what is it about 'Goth' that inspires such loyalty and devotion ?? For whatever reason there really appears to be a 'belief' and a feeling of 'belonging'. Times may change, but you can always rely on any Goth DJ playing your favourites by The Cult & The Sisters that you danced to way back in your youth. Perhaps it's the ultimate Youth Cult that has become a Middle-Aged Cult !! How long will it be before Goth Clubs have to start offering OPA Diecount Enrty !!??!!
And still The DarkRoom the smoke machine was on over-drive ... and the dance went on. Plenty of alcohol was consumed, but there wasn't even a slight hint of any trouble.
All of the planning and organization had been worth it. To use a Goth phrase, it was hats off to Wild Bill - who was having a ball !!
The Goths kept going strong until the 3am curfew on both nights, and the last 45 minutes on the 24th was a total Nephilim Fest. Towers were built, pictures taken and legends made. There were smiling faces everywhere as 'Dawnrazor' merged into 'Last Exit For The Lost'.
Goths miserable ?? Don't you believe a word of it ....ANDY WEBSTER.
WILD BILL BUTTOCK.
The Dark Room, The Giffard Arms.
A GREAT weekly Trad Goth Night.
Only £1 entry.
How long have you been DJing ?
I'm on my 3rd go at DJing. The first was in the mid 80's with a kind of 'Pirate Radio Station', Radio Buttock. Mostly just pissing idiots off with a CB Radio, a couple of decks and a home stereo. A massive audience probably into double figures !!
My 2nd attempt was a little more serious, teaming up with my mate for 'The Buttock Brothers' managing to blag some Gigs in Walsall/West Bromwich Rock Pubs. We attempted to 'educate' the Metalheads into the delights of Goth/Industrial and Techno (!) with various degrees of success/failure. I don't actually know to this day whether a Hells Angel throwing a chair at us was a compliment or not.
This is my 3rd attempt and I sort of fell into it. I began doing monthly Guest Slots at The Giffard's previous Goth Night 'Hex In The City' and when the regular Hex DJ couldn't do a planned Mission Aftershow event in May '07 I volunteered. The night was a success and people asked me to start a night of my own as they - as I did - missed the old Trad Goth that most DJs in The Midlands were ignoring.
And so ClubDawnrazor came about. It was planned to be 4 times a year and my good lady wife and myself planned to showcase Bands and give people 'A good old fashioned Goth/Alternative Night'. I managed to wrangle NFD to be a first Band last August.
Again the night was an enormous success. So successful in fact that the organizer of Hex In The City became The Dark Room and has been, if not a runaway success, a viable weekly Goth Night. I am one of a Team of 3 DJ's at The Dark Room and can be heard 3 Saturdays a month. I don't pretend to be the World's Greatest DJ and I don't take it too seriously but people keep coming back so I must be doing something right.
What Genre Of Music Do You Play ?
I prefer the term 'Alternative' as opposed to just 'Goth' as it's open to debate as to whether 50% of what I play could be termed Goth or not. My own particular favourite is late 80's / early 90's Gothic Rock (Trad) and I have gained a bit of a reputation for playing Trad Goth where a great many contemporary DJs sneer at the Genre, deriding it as old fashioned nostalgia.
There are plenty of people that enjoy nostalgia and I am more than happy to oblige. But my Sets consist of whatever the audience demands - I'm there to entertain, not educate. Basically I play an 'across the board' selection from Punk to Techno, as long as it's not mainstream/black/death metal or Stock, Aitken and Waterman style 80's Pop then I'll play it. I am such a Prostitute !! But between me and you, Gothic Rock Rules !!
Best Gig You Have Ever Been To ?
THE MISSION, Reading Festival, '87. Gothic Rock at it's highest prominence and a Band on top form in front of 30,000 Goths. What more could you ask for ? Apart from a weekend featuring Fields, All About Eve, The Fall and The Bolshoi (and I got all that as well).
Favourite Band Of All-Time ?
The original and genuine (accept no substitute) FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM. Closely followed by pre-1990 THE SISTERS OF MERCY. And Hawkwind (sssh).
Favourite 5 Albums Ever ?
Oh bugger, can I have 7 being as 4 of them are by 2 Bands ...
Elizium - Fields
Floodland - The Sisters
The Nephilim - Fields
First And Last And Always - The Sisters
The Scream - Siouxsie And The Banshees
Gods Own Medicine - The Mission
Rattus Norvegicus - The Stranglers
Top 3 DanceFloor Fillers ?
Temple Of Love (original) - The Sisters
Psychonaut - Fields
A Forest - The Cure
Favourite Drink ?
Guinness (although I am partial to a glass of Absinthe or six ...)
Fantasy Date For A Night Out ?
Kate Bush (around 1978 preferably).
BUTTOCK’S RECORD REVIEWS
Being As I’m still doley scum and have nothing better to do than listen to music all day, I thought I’d entertain myself by writing little reviews on the stuff I’m listening to.....
Apologies in advance if I insult your band or your favourite band. Just because I might say things like “Wumpscut should stuff his pro-tools up his arse” or “Nightwish’s sound could well be improved by a ball gag in the singers mouth and a pair of boxing gloves on the guitarist” doesn’t necessarily mean I won’t play their tracks if you ask for them on a Saturday night in The Darkroom. Believe me, a DJ sighing and rolling his eyes is a compliment to your fine musical choice!
THE EDEN HOUSE- SMOKE AND MIRRORS
In August 2007 I put on my first ever gig. I managed, by nagging and begging, to get NFD to play The Giffard. Anyway to cut through the crap I had to show Tony Pettit where thehotel was he was staying at, and asked the question that all star-struck Nephilim fans must have asked him a million times; “Do you think the original Fields of the Nephilim will ever get back together?”, I don’t remember his exact answer (I was too busy kicking myself for being such a naff twat!) but he did mention that he and Steve (Carey) were working on a project that involvedmost of the old Nephs. The project turned out to be THE EDEN HOUSE and I’ve been privileged to be able to hear some of the tracks develop over the past 8 months or so. The band giving me a CD of some demos in May (which have received a severe hammering in The Darkroom) and even getting a preview of the completed, but as then unmastered album, at The Adoration gig at The Giff last December. April sees the album finally released under the title of “Smoke and mirrors” and thanks to Tony and Steve I’ve finally got my sweaty little mitts on one of the first promo copies. I was asked to post a review on the Dawnrazor forum and following is it. Bare in mind it was written for a Fields of the Nephilim discussion forum and therefore contains plenty of FOTN references and some forum “in-jokes” for which I apologise for, being as if you’re not a FOTN fan or a DR forum member you won’t have a clue what I’m on about at times “THE EDEN HOUSE-SMOKE AND MIRRORS, A review of sorts
I probably am not the best qualified to review this album for the following reasons;
1)I’m not a music journalist
2)I’ve only had the album two days and an album of this
much depth deserves serious listening over time.
3)I’m hardly unbiased (nice blokes, got a lot of time for them etc etc…)
I can give you my initial impressions though
First of all, Those who feel the Nefilim’s Zoon is the finest album ever made and those of the “I would use Carl McCoy’s shit for toothpaste” disposition are going to hate it. But those with a more open mind will love it. Secondly, Elizium part 2 it is not. But it possesses Elizium’s qualities of being able to take you over and has that dreamlike/trance inducing feel before storming out into breathtakingly powerful passages. Thirdly it is not Fields of the nephilim, although the input of “The Uvvers” is unmistakable (In particular the bass on “to believe in something” and “The dark half”, the slide guitar passage on the fantastically powerful “Gods pride”, and the whole of the majestic “Fire for you”). No, Smoke and mirrors is something totally new. A whole new slant on dark alternative music, or Goth if you like. But there are no “Goffik” clichés here. Yes it’s dark, possibly the darkest album I’ve ever heard. “Smoke and mirrors” intensity is unrelenting and yet it has moments of stark beauty. The sound is huge, in places as over the top as “Floodland” but at times, especially with Julianne Regan’s “The Beauty of science”, somehow understated. One of the things about “Smoke and mirrors” that will definitely divide opinion is the “dub” feel, in particular the album’s mid-section of “God's Pride”/ “Reach Out”/“Trashed Treasure”/ “Iron In The Soul”. Personally I think it’s a masterstroke, Imagine “Mezzanine” era Massive Attack with Cocteau-esque guitar textures (Trip-Goth anyone?), there’s even a half mumbled Tricky style rap during “Iron in the soul”! The all female vocals is, again, a masterstroke and all four vocalists rise to the challenge. Julianne has never sounded better, Evi Vine’s almost Stevey Nicks-ish drawl, Monica Richards’ subtle power and , the albums revelation, the staggering tonsils of Amandine Ferrari! So my initial impression of “Smoke and Mirrors” is that it is a masterpiece-Goth for the 21st century. It possesses all that made FOTN special- the ability to shift effortlessly from the ethereal into devastating power without the need to resort to heavy metal and takes that other great FOTN quality-Proggression. Whilst large aspects of McCoy’s “Mourning Sun” and NFD’s “dead pool rising” seem to make a decided effort to sound like the Neph of the past, “Smoke and mirrors” moves the sound on into(hopefully) a bright (or should that be dark) future!”....
As a footnote, over the last few days I can’t keep from listening to the album and it just gets better and better on every listen.
DEATHSTARS-NIGHT ELECRIC NIGHT....
The thing that gets me about this industrial metal stuff that now gets bandied about as goth is that it was all done much better in the early to mid 90’s by the likes of Ministry, Revolting cocks, Nine inch nails, White Zombie and Die Krupps.And to be honest it doesn’t seem to have changed that much. 15 years ago the sort of people that were into industrial metal wouldn’t have pissed on either Rammstein and Deathstars if they were on fire. It’s not terrible, in the way Nightwish or Cradle of filth are teeth gnashingly aweful, It’s all just a bit dull and all been done before. It just leaves me cold and unmoved..... At best 69 eyes/Type O neg, at worst as rubbish as Clawfinger. But it’s the vocals and lyrics, there must be a book or school somewhere that trains people to be this naff and clichéd, you can’t be that bad naturally surely?
'THE MISSION ; FAREWELL'
"So, how many did you go to ???..." If you go to any Goth type Gig or Event over the next period wearing your Farewell Tour Tee-Shirt this is a question you are bound to be asked. Hey - it's already happened to me on 2 occasions in the last week !!!
I went to the first 2 nights, then back for the last one. It was a fantastic experience ; brilliant Gigs and great people - many of whom had travelled so far to be there.
The Mission may have made a few 'dodgy' Albums over the years, but live they've always given 100% and more. Kicking things off on the first night with The Sisters Of Murphy as Support was inspired. What a start !!
To pick highlights is so difficult. Throughout it all the crowd and atmosphere were awesome. Wednesday was based around 'First Chapter'. My first Mission Gig was in '86 on the World Crusade jaunt. Amazingly I managed to find my Tee-Shirt (and still fit into it). The dates on the back had totally faded but the front logo was still clear !! Thus I was wearing a shirt that was 22 years old ..........
'Like A Hurricane' has always been one of my favourites and it still sounds great. Wayne was having a ball and Simon Hinkler put in an appearance (as he would do each night). The Set just flew by.
'God's Own Medicine' was Thursday ... and it was my Birthday. Yes, I can remember some of it !!! Again The Mission were on top form.
I went home on the Friday morning, and spent the day feeling a mixture of high and tired. Saturday it was back to London for the grand finale. O'Neills was the Pub for the week and as usual we got chatting to both familiar and new faces - including Brad, who had travelled from Canada for these dates.
The night kicked off with Miles Hunt, then The Mission played a 'Carved In Sand' Set. They reappeared with Miles to play a couple of tunes, then after a short break played for around an hour and three quarters - kicking off with 'Like A Hurricane'.
It was blistering, emotional stuff. There was no great parting speech from Wayne ; towards the end he said how much he would miss all the loyal Mission fans. As you would have expected the atmosphere was incredible. Classic followed classic. Eventually everything came to an almighty climax with '1969', 'Shelter From The Storm' and 'Tower Of Strength'.
Prolonged applause rang around the venue as The Mission logo and 'Keep The Faith' flashed up onto the backdrop.
And so what had begun 22 years ago was now over. From The Sisterhood at Alice In Wonderland to this.
Wayne Hussey lived it and throughout that period maintained an incredibly loyal fanbase - mainly due to the consistently brilliant live shows.
The Mission went out in style. It truly was a week that those of us who were there will remember for a very, very long time to come.
Keep The Faith.
(Cyber) Andy Webster.
'The Dark Angel Of Luton'
1. What is your Favourite type of Music ?
Obviously I like goth, industrial, eighties, ebm, dark wave, electro and a lot of stuff inbetween and around the edges. I listen to all kinds of things, and always open to hearing something different. I like a song with a booming repetitive bass line in it :o)
2. What is the Best Gig you have Ever been to ?
The gigs I’ve been to have been good for different reasons so it’s hard to say which is ‘best’. The first time I saw The Cure was special. And seeing All About Eve by candlelight in a Chapel was a moment too. But then seeing TV Smith play a ‘charity’ gig (that the charity didn’t turn up for!) at the edge of Camden Market to about 20 people was fantastic! Also any band that puts on a fun show with a good atmosphere is always good – Xpq21, Cruxshadows, Manuskript, The Last Dance have all been great. Is that too many answers? Sorry!
3. Who are your favourite Band of All-Time ?
The Cure, always, I love them! (Also love Clan of Xymox, Joy Division, DEpeche Mode, The Merry Thoughts, Project Pitchfork & The Last Dance - I'm not very good at one word answers!)
4. Top 5 Albums Ever ?
In no particular order, this is an extremely hard decision to make:
All albums by The Cure? Oh, no there are a few more than 5! Can I just make number one all albums by The Cure? Pleease? Otherwise they’ll take up all 5!
Project Pitchfork – Daimonion
The Sisters of Mercy – Floodland
Clan of Xymox – Farewell
The Last Dance – Whispers In Rage
And right now I’m loving - Rico – Violent Silences (but that’s not ‘of all time’) (maybe one day the best DJ in town will play Psychokiller for me?!!)
5. Your Favourite 3 songs of All-Time?
The Cure – How Beautiful You Are
The Cure – Disintegration
Delerium – Silence
Pete Murphy – Cuts You Up
The Sisters of Mercy – Some Kind of Stranger
Clan of Xymos – A Day
The Fall – Blindness *pokes tongue out at Cyber Andy*
6. Favourite Drink?
Kahlua and milk, but that’s a drink for home. When I’m out I drink Guiness or wine, or a Samuel Smiths pint if I can get one!
7. 'Dream Gig' ; 3 Bands + Venue anywhere in the world ?
The Cure (of course)
The Last Dance
All playing at Ludlow Castle please!
8. Fantasy Date for a Night Out ?
Well, for looks I guess Johnny Depp, but then I’d rather go on a date with someone I have met before because I’m shy! Id be way too nervous! Maybe Noel Fielding of The Mighty Boosh, I’m sure he’d be fun. Italian meal? In a pretty place with a castle preferably.
Electric Ballroom, Camden.
24 October '07.
'Icons Live Forever' as the lady herself once sang ... Well ; not many manage to maintain their 'Iconic' status over a 30+ year period whilst they are still alive !! Siouxsie - a role model for TWO Generations ; both 'Punk Princess' and 'Gothic Ice Queen'.
Her lengthy recent absence had undoubtefly raised anticipation for this event, and there was a real sense of excitement in the air. Siouxsie came onstage looking fantastic, and opened with a majestic 'Dear Prudence'. One of my personal favourite Banshee songs 'Arabian Knights' followed, and the crowd were in the palm of her hand.
Energy exuded from the (umbelievably) fifty year old black haired Gothess, and she really seemed to be enjoying herself. The crowd reaction went into overdrive when she announced they were about to play 'our first Single.' 'Hong Kong Garden' duly had The Electric Ballroom jumping. How many of us present had really thought she would play that one ???Siouxsie then treated us to a fine selection from her recent Solo Album 'Mantaray', and it is to her credit that this material stood up against the Banshee classics. Highlights were 'Loveless' and a magnificent 'Into A Swan'. Her voice sounded as superb as ever. The Set just whizzed by, with Siouxsie constantly kicking, jumping, and dancing in front of her adoring crowd. A cover of 'Hello I Love You' rounded things off in fine style. Siouxsie proved tonight that she's still got the aura and magic that has inspired so many over such a long period. The girl whose look so many have copied remains a truly unique individual.
Dear Prudence. Arabian Knights. Hong Kong Garden. Follow You. Here Comes That Day. Drone Zone. Sea Of Tranquility. If It Doesn't Kill You. Loveless. One Mile Below. About To Happen. Into A Swan. Cish Cash. Hello I Love You.
Biomekanikal - SCHULTZ.
It's finally happened - News Channels all over the world have told everyone to head for the Nuclear Shelters as the bombs are being dropped. It could be the end of the world as we know it, and down in CyberShelter Two this Album blasts out at top volume. The PERFECT soundtrack for impending war !!
I had never heard of Schultz before listening to this CD, so had no pre-conceived ideas at all. To say it consists of 13 'tracks' is irrelevant. It is one long pounding destructive beat.
Is it any good I hear you cry ?? Well - I've listened to it quite a few times ... and have to say I don't know !!!!
If you are in the right place and mood, then it's fantastic. If you listened to it when you are feeling a bit 'fragile' then the term 'headache music' certainly springs to mind.
Surely the Title of 'track 6' sums it up ; Musik Is Breaking My Head ... or perhaps 'track 5' - Hypnotikal.
The pace is unrelenting. One thing I do know is that for some reason or other it makes me want to listen to it over and over again !! I suggest you too give it a try ....(Cyber) Andy Webster.
Who are your Favourite Band EVER ?
Best gig you have ever been to ?
Killing Joke @ The Astoria - 1992.
Favourite Drink ?
Vodka, red wine, beer, whisky, gin
Top 5 Albums of ALL TIME ?
You'd get a different answer every day to any favourite of all time questions, but right now:
1. '...And The Ambulance Died In His Arms' - Coil
2. 'The Holy Bible' - Manic Street Preachers
3. 'Sam's Town' - The Killers
4. 'Soundtracks For The Blind' - SWANS
5. 'Twin Peaks [Soundtrack] - Angelo Badalamenti
Favourite 3 Songs of ALL TIME ?
1. 'Ich Bin Ein Auslander' - PWEI
2. 'Head Like A Hole- NIN
3. 'The Great Escape' - Marillion
Favourite 3 Books of ALL TIME ?
2. Crime & Punishment
3. The White Hotel
Favourite 5 Films of ALL TIME ?
3. Mrs Parker And The Vicious Circle
Favourite Song Lyric ?
- 'All tied to their things, they are netted by their strings... Free to flutter in memory of their wasted wings'
"In The Cage" - Genesis
If you could attend one 'Dream' Gig who would be on
Up (3 bands) and where would it be ?
2. Manic Street Preachers (Holy Bible era)
In reality, probably Brixton Academy... In fantasy, on the side of a volcano.
Who would be your 'Fantasy Date' for a night out ?
Andrew Eldritch ; Hero, Villain, Not Bothered ...
Purple Turtle, Camden. 22nd Nov. '07
The second 'FuturePunk' drew a healthy sized crowd to the middle of Camden, and was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Katscan had been due to Headline, but split up a couple of weeks prior to the event. All the Bands that did play more than made up for this !!
There appear to be few 'major egos' amoungst the Line Out Records stable ... Deathboy had topped the bill in '06, but were first on tonight. Resplendent in a 'Suicide Bomber' Tee-Shirt Scott gives it his all as the Band speed through an excellent Set. Hey - they even had 'proper' Drums !!!
Tarantella Serpentine were pulled in at late notice, but produced the goods and soon had people dancing. I'd never heard anything by them before tonight but would advice you to check them out.
Next up were History Of Guns. Renowned for all of the free CD's they give away ("All Art Should Be Free" - Max Rael) Guns really come into their own onstage. Vocalist Del has great energy and spirit (or should that be 'Spirits' as in the Vodka variety ...) and sings like he totally means it. Guitarist Max tonight unveils his new 'Nicky Wire' look, and gets plenty of approving comments about his legs !! New songs mix with old classics, and Guns are superb.
Xykogen are last on, and more than live up to expectations. The twin vocalists work really well and they have plenty of strong tunes. 'Killing Method' is played 2nd and is outstanding. A great cover of 'Groove Is In The Heart', an appearance by Scott Deathboy on vocals and a climax of 'Mutate And Survive' send the crowd home happy.
Four strong Bands in a good venue for a fiver. You can't beat that !! Just make sure you don't miss FuturePunk '08 .......
History Of Guns SetList. Born Brutalised Bought Then Buried. I Am / You Are. Flashbacks. Powder. Your Obedient Servants. Empty Eyes.
Xykogen SetList. Metallaxis. Killing Method. My Unquiet Mind. No Heaven. An Die Freude. Say No More. Groove Is In The Heart. Mutate And Survive.ANDY WEBSTER.
An EXCLUSIVE Interview with Max Rael & Del Alien from History Of Guns + their Co-Manager Dawn.
Venue ; The Crown Pub, Hunsdon then Del's Front Room.
Date ; 27th November '07.
Andy. Well, it's the lunchtime after the night of
great Guns live performance at FuturePunk. How are you feeling ?
Del. Off my face !! - 8 beers already and it's only 2.30pm ... I didn't even get up until midday !!
Max. Relieved. So much stress beforehand, and now it's all over I have nothing to worry about.
Andy. How do you think it went last night ?
Max. A MASSIVE success !!
Del. I can't remember !! All that work and it's all over in 2 minutes.
Max. It was great that people travelled from so far to see us ; North Yorkshire, Rugby, Oxford and Derby.
Andy. Why do all of Guns have Stage Names ?
Del. Stagger Lee called me Alien because I used to be into UFO's (it's a complicated story ...).
Max. My Mum used to spit on me whenever I pissed on the carpet in front of the television.
Andy. Max - Why did you wear a skirt onstage last
Max. Because I like to inject an air of glamour to proceedings !!
Andy. The new Album ACEDIA is all recorded and
ready to be
Released in Jan. or Feb. '08. How would you describe your new direction
? Max. Live drums, heavy guitars, very little keyboards - really NASTY,
dark and horrible !!
Andy. So obviously you are going for the commercial
Max. No not really - there's lots of swearing on it which makes it a bit hard to get Radio play !?!
(Del at this point leaves the room to get more Vodka. Dawn randomly puts 'Save Barney' by Guns on the Stereo).
Andy. Would you 'Sell Out' if a major label offered
great deal of money to record 'Pop Songs' ?
Max. DEFINATELY !!
Del. Of course we would .... but they would be f**king good Pop Songs !!
Andy. Which contemporary Artists do you respect ?
Max. Deathboy, Xykogen, Dead Heaven.
Del. I concur !!
Andy. History Of Guns are renowned for giving away
What is your view on Radiohead recently 'giving away' their new Album ?
Del. It's OK for them to do it - they can afford it.
Max. All Art should be free !! ... but we need to drink, and occasionally eat.
Andy. Do you have any 'Promotional Stunts' lined up
Album's release ?
Del. OH YES !! I get to kill Max with a Crow Bar.
Max. FULL FRONTAL NUDITY !!!!
Del. Max has been DESPERATE to do a full frontal nude shot for 13 years !!!
Andy. Are History Of Guns perfectionists ?
Dawn. Yes, they're so self critical it's UNREAL.
Max. That's cos we're c**nts !! We're drunken messers ... but we do like to GET IT RIGHT !!
Andy. Is there a lyrical theme on the new Album ?
Del. Everything is a journey ...
Max. Acedia means a total absence of Spiritual Light.
Andy. Is there any Spiritual Light in History Of
Del. No ... but there are plenty of Spirits (particularly VODKA in Guns !!!!).
Max. YES, but not on this Album !! The next one is going to be called Half Light - which will be a gradual drawing away from Spiritual despair into a Half Light ....
Del. Into TOTAL despair ...
Andy. Any plans to tour the new record ?
Max. Hopefully our Co-Managers are going to fix up some Gigs !! We would love to release Half Light to coincide with an appearance at Infest '08 !!??!! ...
Del. I just tip up !!
(Max & Del leave the front room to go to the local shop a few houses away to get more Vodka ...).
Andy. Dawn - is it POSSIBLE to Manage Guns ?
Dawn. Only if there were 72 hours in a day as it takes 60 hours to sober them up !!
Andy. What is the BEST thing about being their
Dawn. Getting in for free ... and THE RIDER !!!
Andy. What is the WORST thing ?
Dawn. Putting up with their petty arguements and the bollocks that they talk !! ... and getting Fester to Shut The F**k Up !!!
Andy. Can you ever see Guns hitting the big time ?
Dawn. YES ... now I've taken over half of the Management role. They've been pestering me to do this for FOUR YEARS !!!
(Max & Del reappear loaded with Vodka & Fosters ...).
Andy. Could Guns possibly function WITHOUT alcohol ?
Max. NO !!! I do wonder about these Bands that have been Hellraisers then give it all up and find Jesus or whatever ... If one of us gave up drinking I just can't imagine how it would work because we're all about altered states of conciousness ....
Del. That's SUCH A GOOD QUESTION !! I could go on for HOURS about it ....
Andy. Can you think of any questions you would like
me to ask
Max. NO !!
Del. I could sit here for hours ... and probably will !!
Andy. Have you got any collaborations coming up ?
Max. A Guns vs Xykogen mix ...
Del. We're doing one with Dead Heaven - Max on Keys, double vocal, Neno on Guitar.
Andy. So things are buzzing for Guns ; how do you
see the next
6 months ?
Del. GUN SHAPED !!
Max. Hopefully our new Album - which is our first one for Line Out Records - will really go places.
Del. Most probably the bargain bin at Woolies ...
Dawn. Then going from being only just known to f**king famous !!!
Andy. Max ; you are soon to become a father !! How
do you see
this changing your rock n roll lifestyle ?
Del. What rock n roll lifestyle ???
Max. It's a cruel coincidence that the first line on our new CD is 'Welcome To The World Little C**ts' !?! I think I will just carry on doing what I do ...
Del. Your WHOLE LIFE is going to change !!
Max. Music & History Of Guns is part of what I am !!
Dawn. Max - I thought it was ALL OF WHAT YOU ARE !!!
Max. I DO HAVE other interests ....
Del. Stagger Lee has 4 children, I have Kyle and now Max is 'banging one out'. They are the future called 'Ministry Of Drunks' ...
Andy. So it sounds as though History Of Guns are
gonna be here
for a long time to come !! ... with a FUTURE GENERATION to follow ...
Max. History Of Guns is a collective. There's me & Del and a collection of idiots that we collaborate with ... Basically a MISH-MASH OF A SHIM SHAM !!!
Del. Max - sod off, you've ruined my life ....
This Interview is Copyright of ANDY WEBSTER. Not to
reproduced without his permission - unless you're the NME then I'll be
quite happy to let you publish it !!!!
HISTORY OF GUNS new Album ACEDIA is currently in the FINAL stages of being Mastered, and should be released very soon on Line Out Records.
For more Guns Info go to www.historyofguns.com or to read the MOST INTERESTING Live Journal out there on the Internet put Max Rael into Google !!!
They are truly a GREAT LIVE BAND ... make sure you SEE THEM BEFORE THEY DIE !!!!!!!!!!
PROFILE OF SABBY (Co-Organizer of Plack Planet).
1. What is your favourite type of music ? The sound of the Univers, Anything my Soul & Body can respond to but essetialy New Wave, New Romantic, 80's, Dark Wave, Chopin, Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Etheral and Operatic genres
2. Who are your Favourite Band of All - Time ? DEPECHE MODE, DEPECHE MODE, DEPECHE MODE!
3. Best Gig you have Ever been to ? I would say Indochine (French New Wave band from the 80's) because it was my first ever!
4. Favourite Five Albums of All - Time ? Violator/Depeche Mode, Songs of Faith and Devotion/Depeche Mode, Purple Rain/Prince, Veuillez rendre l' âme à qui elle appartient/Noir Désir, 3éme Sex/Indochine.
5. Top Three Songs ? Enjoy The Silence/Depeche Mode, Marian/The Sisters, Lettre à Elise/Ludwig van Beethoven.
6. Favourite Drink ? Corona with Lime
7. If you could go to a gig anywhere in the world, where would it be and which three bands? In the Catare country which is near where I was born and bread (there are stunning catare castles ruins perched in the mountains) and it would have to be of course Depeche Mode, The Sisters (there always a chance to see Eldritch jump off the cliff after he realised that he is too much of a genius for his own good), The Cure (because it is my fantasy so free of charge and I can't afford £35 to see them in a horrible venue).
8. Fantasy Date for a night out ? Ummmm.. tuff one.........decision, decision............ I suppose a man that come close to Aragorn, Faramir or Eomer in The Lord of The Rings (book not film) and a bonus if he looks like Josh Holloway from Lost (yum yum). But essentialy a date with Jack Sparrow Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!
It was so dark all over Bedford on the night of Saturday 15th September 2007 ... Black Planet's first Nite - would anyone turn up ?? OF COURSE THEY WOULD ; and have a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
Out of the darkness came the black-clad hordes, and they were served up the treat that is The Tallyman's Dark Omnibus. People were drawn in ever closer as his Set went on - climaxing with the classic 'Fuck 'Em All'.
Headliners The Ghost Of Lemora (from London) were excellent. Twinkle and the boys (+ one girl ...) had the crowd in the palm of their hand with a superb Set. Tracks from the 'Reach For The Ground' Album went down well, as did newer songs (they have an Album released in the very near future on Resurrection Records). Encores followed, before they retreated Swifty-ly to the bar for refreshments !?!
DJ CyberAndy then kicked in, and the Dancefloor was soon full ; plenty of Goth, Electro and old favourites kept people bopping until 3am !! Someone even complained that she'd danced so much her feet hurt .......
As the clock reached three what had begun now had to end. We headed out of The Angel with the Black World in our minds - knowing that it had been a GREAT Nite and that it will all begin again on 20th October !!
TUNE IN, TURN ON, BURN OUT .......A.W.
To come straight to the point, the best weekend of the year !! Infest '07 was everything ... and more.
Bradford may not be renowned for it's culture, but for 3 days at the end of August it's Cyber-A-Go-Go !! As always at these events it's a combination of the music and the people that make it so special. Time to catch up with a few old faces, and meet plenty of new ones. The venue is excellent and really well set up. A not too big main room, VERY cheap bar (!?!) which was well used throughout the weekend, and an 'Escape' area where you could actually sit and chat without having to ruin your vocal chords.
Greyhound are the first Band we see - and what a noise they kick up. Industrial beats and a harsh wall of sound. Some people later were complaining they'd been too loud !!! ... but I thought they were excellent. A great way to kick things off.
Headliners Portion Control have been around for years and have undoubtedly been a major influence on the scene. They split for a while but are now back - and as good as ever. Anyone wanting a nice pressie to put on their Christmas List need look no further than the mega 'Archive' ; a 5 CD Box Collection !! Portion Control hit the spot and had Pete and I dancing !?!
Anyone worrying that Infest is TOTAL 'Bleep Bleep' need worry no longer ... after the bands there is a 2nd Dancefloor that aims directly at the more Goth / 80's end of things. The DJ's played a brilliant mix each evening, and the Dancefloor was packed throughout the 3 days with people thinking that they looked good on the ............
Saturday and Sunday gave many (too many !!) opportunties to spend your cash at the stalls selling clothes and CD's. We were staying at Arkwright Halls, which both had superb rooms and facilities - and was ideally placed ; literally a 5 minute walk to the venue. Very handy when you are ataggering back at 3.30 in the morning .....
Pete had somehow managed to lose his CashCard on the trip up to Bradford, so Saturday morning was spent finding a branch of Barclays. Luckily we managed this ... then had a late breakfast.
As we were making our way to the venue early afternoon someone shouted
"I recognise that voice" and a guy giving away MOMT Flyers said he
remembered me from the FLA Gig in London a couple of months ago !!
I have to say I had a brilliant night then (Portion Control were
...) but my memories of it are a bit hazy !!??!!
David turned out to be a great guy and a real enthusiast who co runs
We had a good chat, then got inside to see Synnack. Described as a 'Experimental Electronic Band' in the programme, they soon had a fair sized crowd bopping away. I thought they were really good.
With The Halls being so close, we retired for a shower and change ... then got back in time for the Dope Satrs Inc !!! Undoubtedly the most 'rock n roll' band of the weekend The Dope Stars brought a Punk attitude and some bone shaking beats to Infest 2007. Rock tunes were never far from the surface and they showed their roots with a last song cover of 'Ace Of Spades'. A real hit !!
We were on a roll now, and this continued with the mighty 13th Monkey - just where did they get that name ?? Pounding beat follows pounding beat as the Monkey Machine takes no prisoners. By now both Pete and I were totally into the groove !?!
Headliners Apoptygma Berzerk - or Apop to their friends - were brilliant. Formed way back in '91 by Stephen Groth, they have always been dependable for danceable electro music. Mixing EBM, Industrial and Techno - and using Guitars !! - they bring great energy to the live arena. The crowd responded well and Apop's Set flew by. A real high of Infest was them ending with 'Love Will Never Die'.
After more drinking, chatting and dancing - plenty of dancing ... - it was back to bed !!!
A good lie in on Sunday morning - and we were ready for it again !!!!!! The outside Patio area of the venue was a great place to have a Pint, and chat to people (the lovely weather all weekend helped as well ...). We met a girl from Leicester who we'd seen on the Friday - Sunday pm she was limping and having to use a stick. Apparently she had injured herself dancing to Dope Stars - and had ended up having to go to A & E. Warning ; dancing to Dope Stars Inc can be SERIOUSLY bad for your health !!
We caught Rupesh Cartel - and were very glad that we did. This duo had a superb Electro Depeche type sound. Pete liked them so much he brought the T-Shirt !!! I too loved them and will try to investigate 'The Disco And The What Not' soon.
I can honestly say we really enjoyed each band that we saw at Infest '07. If I had to pick one however it would have to be Sunday's Headliners VNV Nation. The main hall was packed as they bounced onstage - and Ronan was on great form ! Lots of chat and jokes and rushing around the Stage. The music blasted along and the whole crowd danced as one. Many Glow Sticks were raised in the air ....... A truly brilliant finale to Infest - but it wasn't quite over yet. The DJ's kept going until nearly 3am, again with the DanceFloor packed.
What an end to an utterly fantastic weekend. As we wearily headed back to Northamptonshire on the Monday lunchtime one thing we knew for sure was that we'd be back at the same time next year !!!!!!!
I have been to many, many gigs over the years ... lots of which have been superb - but it's only very rarely that an evening such as this comes along. Marc's 50th birthday, a couple of years after the motorcycle crash that nearly killed him.
The term 'special relationship' between an Artist and their fans is a frequently over-used statement. With Marc Almond it only starts to explain things. He has one of the most loyal audiences out there. We have been through the highs and the lows with him, wondered if we would ever see him perform again ... and come out the other side !!
As he walks onstage you can feel the emotion flowing both ways. Never, ever someone who just 'goes through the motions' tonights set is a Career spanning epic of truly legendary proportions. A totally 'I was there' one for years to come. We really are - as Marc says - 'Sharing a moment', and you can't ask for more than that.
Material from all eras is played ; The Mambas, Solo and, of course, Soft Cell. Prolonged applause follows every song. Marc tells us how 35 years ago he saw Lou Reed, and the affect it had on him ... he then sings 'Caroline Says' as though it's the last song he'll ever sing.
Taking us back to The Mambas, 'Your Aura' and the still magnificent 'Torment' are show stoppers ... except this is a gig where nearly every song is a show stopper !!!
As the crowd sing 'Happy Birthday' it is just all too much for Marc. He disappears for a while to compose himself before 'Tainted Love' and 'What' are mere preludes to the incredible climax that is a mass sing-a-long of 'Say Hello Wave Goodbye'.
Around two and a half hours after coming on, Marc finally leaves us. He looked great and his voice was superb throughout. At some stage during the evening he had been joking about how now he's 50 perhaps he should slow down a bit ... 'Not a chance' he told us !! Let's hope not.
I don't believe that anyone at Shepherds Bush Empire for this show left with any feeling other than one of having been part of a totally epic evening that was really, really something special. Marc Almond is an absolute star and 100% for real. Here's to the next 50 years !!
THE COVEN GOTH NIGHT, LUTON.
PROFILE OF NEPHILIMBABE
1. How long have you been DJing for ? Five years.
2. What Genre of Music do you play ? Goth / Industrial / New Wave / Punk / Darkwave / 80's
3. Who are your Favourite Band of All - Time ? Garden Of Delight / Sisters / Fields / The Jam
4. Best Gig you have Ever been to ? The Cult, Brixton. '86.
5. Favourite Five Albums of All - Time ? First And Last And Always - The Sisters Of Mercy Elisium - Fields Of The Nephilim Dreamtime - The Cult Necromanteion - Garden Of Delight The Clash - The Clash
6. Top Three DanceFloor Fillers ? I can't possibly answer that.
7. Favourite Drink ? Cider
8. 'Dream Nite' to DJ ? My tastes change from day to day ....
9. Fantasy Date for a night out ? Not answering that on moral grounds !!
This event has been running for 5 years now, and is DJ'd by NEPHILIMBABE.Click here to go to The Coven's MySpace Page
Gothic Industrial Noise Terrorists History Of Guns have been around for a while now. They usually have a 'flexible' Line-Up - depending on which new Guitarist Del has just recruited from the local Pub ....
The core of the band are Max Rael and Del Alien. They give away more than their fair share of free CD's, and never say no to the offer of an alcoholic drink in return !!! They also have a fine selection of T-Shirts available for purchase.
An excellent live band, Guns have played Whitby Goth Weekend and FuturePunk. They hope to headline Wembley before they die, and are currently practising hard for a Career-Defining performance on Saturday 15th March '08 at Black Planet, The Angel, Bedford (who needs Wembley when you can headline Black Planet ?!?).
Visit their Website at www.historyofguns.com
Andy and Del at The Met, Whitby.
1. How would you describe your Bands sound ? I would like to say the sound is unique, at least I've heard nothing like it !! If there is then I want to know about it !!
2. How long have you been together ? I didn't know the answer to that one !?! I phoned my old mucker Stagger Lee ; it's eleven and a half years - damn, you get less for murder !!!
3. Favourite Band Of All-Time ? This is well ard to answer, but under pressure I would say Bauhaus. Ni I mean, oh damn ...
4. Best Gig you have ever been to ? Alien Sex Fiend because I had fallen out with an old mate of mine Tony Keppler (RIP). All of a sudden Tony jumps onstage, grabs hold of Nick and screams into the mic 'Tell Del I'm Sorry !!' With that a load of bouncers grab Tony and I have never seen a human body projected so far into the audience !! I have never laughed so hard. Bless him.
5. Top 5 Albums Of All-Time ? No, no, no ... I can't answer that - it's a mood thing.
6. Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ? Here's another mood thing - it changes all the time ! At the mo I would say ; Scary Monsters - David Bowie, Martin - Soft Cell and Alive And Kicking - Club Country (what a voice, RIP).
7. Favourite Drink ? No, no ... this is wrong !! Don't make me do it. According to the DVD it's Lager, Vodka and Wine.
8. If you could have one Musician guest on your next Album who would it be ? Would have to be Daniel Ash (Bauhaus). What a Guitarist. The other would be Dead Heaven 9this one is going to happen !!). I'm working on this so listen out ...
9. If you could play one 'Dream Gig' where would it be, and who else would be on the bill ? Brixton Academy, and I'm not answering the rest !! It'll make me out the git of the band. I'm more of a wind em up and watch it go sort of bloke !!!
10. Whjo would be your 'Fantasy Date' for a night out ? The woman out of Final Fantasy ... Yes, I know she's computer generated. I have a screwed mind !!
So there you have it - an insight into the mind of History Of Guns vocalist Del !! we can only presume he doesn't drink his Lager, Vodka and Wine all mixed together as some sort of 'Guns Cocktail' ... and we are disappointed that Max Rael wasn't Del's 'Dream Date' !!??!!
Lineout Records have a number of excellent bands on their books ; Deathboy, Earth Loop Recall, Xykogen, Trauma Pet, Katscan and the soon-to-be-massive History Of Guns.
Check out their Website for more Info - plus they often give away free Sampler CD's !!!
Unscene Magazine is published approx. twice a year, and is VERY worth buying. Covering the Gothic Scene it features Interviews, Album and Live reviews ... and usually comes with a free CD !!
Click here to go to UNSCENE's MySpace Page
Martin OldGoth co-runs thirteen13 and DJs a monthly Nite at InsanitoriuM in Colchester. He PARTICULARLY doesn't like Cyber and Glowsticks .........
PROFILE OF MARTIN
1. How long have you been DJing ? 22 years. I started because the DJ at the Club I went to quit and the Club would have closed if someone didn't take over. Three of us did and the rest is a blur.
2. What genre of Music do you play ? Goth. Post Punk. Deathrock. A tiny bit of Guitar based Industrial. I love stirring choruses and tribal drums, proper ones ...
3. What is the Best Gig you have ever been to ? I'd have to cheat and say Fields Of The Nephilim 'Electrostatic' tour in '87. Following the band around the country for a week or so was such a great experience. People don't do that anymore. They just moan if a band doesn't play within a mile of their house.
4. Top three All-Time guaranteed Dancefloor fillers ? It varies, but for now ... Israel - Siouxsie And The Banshees Nightmares - The Last Dance Kick In The Eye - Bauhaus
5. Favourite Band of All-Time ? The Clash, without a doubt. Joe Strummer changed my life and affected so many other peoples whether they realise it or not. The man is/was a fucking lefgend. There should be statues in town centres. His lyrics should be studied in schools. The Clash gave me my attitude and Politics.
6. Favourite Drink ? Captain Morgan spiced, Absolut Vodka or a Pint of Mild please !
7. If you could DJ a 'Dream Nite' where would it be and which Bands would play ? Whitby Goth Weekend with Miguel and the Living Dead, The Last Days Of Jesus and Scarlets Remains - just to show people there is life in Goth and we don't all have to listen to Techno and Metal ! There is a whole world of Goth out there beyojnd our little island, and the Company I co-run (thirteen13) is determined to bring it here to wake this place up a bit.
8. Top 5 Albums Of All-Time ? Peepshow - Siouxsie And The Banshees Whispers In Rage - The Last Dance 101 Damnations - Carter USM Dawnrazor - Fields Of The Nephilim London Calling - The Clash
9. Who Is Your Favourite DJ ? Apart from me ? Tricky one ... Depends on the mood. Probably someone who's a combination of Sexbat, Cavey Nik and Dave Exile.
10. Who would be your Fabtasy Date for a Nite out ? Monica Richards (Faith and the Muse) or if she's busy washing her hair I'll take Patricia Morrison (before Dave and the baby came along ; I don't want to upset him !).
The May Bank Holiday Weekend saw Edinburgh turn into CyberCentral, with everyone out for a good time - and for the vast majority that was what happened. A late change of venues meant that things kicked off at around 8pm on the Friday evening at Studio 24.
DIMP (Dark Improvised Music Project) had the 'task' of being first on - never the easiest slot - and only a hardened few gathered anywhere near the stage. I wasn't really taken with them, feeling too many of their songs just went nowhere ... and went on for far too long.
We didn't have to wait long however for the Festival to get moving. Siva Six - from Greece and featuring ex-members of Septic Flesh and Rotting Christ - were excellent. Vocalist Z has great stage presence and prowls menacingly around - his dark vocals fitting perfectly with the heavy EBM/ Industrial beats. With 2 Albums (Rise New Flesh & Black Will) behind them they soon had the crowd dancing. More people investigated them as the set progressed - always a good sign - and for me they were one of the real highs of Dark City '07.
XP8 continued in the right direction. From Italy this was only their 2nd UK performance, and they were lively with lots of catchy, dancy tunes. 'Lies' was superb and there was plenty of interaction with the crowd.
Headliners were Germany's Solitary Experiments. Their VNV-esque Electropop went down very well and they provided a fine end to the first part of the evening. With Studio 24 having to be emptied at 11pm sharp (for some reason or other ...) there was then the highly unusual sifght of the Gothic 'masses' making their way to the Aftershow venue !!
Any moaning about the walk (hey, at least it wasn't raining) was surely offset by the highly atmospheric Nicol Edwards. Lots of VERY small intimate rooms with a fine DJ set taking place in one of them that kept plenty of people dancing until 3am.
Saturday kicked off at around 5.30pm (although Saturday and Sunday both ended up running a bit late due to 'technical' problems) at The Caves. The name says it all and it was most suitable for this sort of bash.
Cybercide make no claims to be revolutionary pioneers, but they are a band who are certainly on the rise. Originally formed in '99 the present line up only released their superb debut Album 'Adrenaline' in '06. They aim to make accessible dancefloor Electronic music - and they achieve this with style. The trance-ish sound was well received, and everyone that I spoke to about them later in the evening agreed that Cybercide had really hit the spot.
The one man event that is Dyspraxia came next. Mr PineappleHead indeed !?! Jumping around and punching the air continually, this guy was having great fun - as were the audience. How many of the vocals were actually 'live' is probably debateable, but the techno style had plenty of punters bopping up and down. Highly entertaining.
One of the real plusses of the entire weekend was how friendly everyone was - both the locals and those that had come from afar.
Plenty of stamina (or vodka and red bull ...) is needed to complete the course, and things continued apace with Modulate. They've recently been supporting VNV, and you could see why. Another hit with the crowd at the front.
The stars of Saturday for me were probably 32 Crash. From Belgium and making their British debut this duo of Front 242 vocalist Jean-Luc De Mayer and Implants Len Lemaire went down a storm. They certainly lived up to their reputations, had the crowd buzzing AND had the best slogan Tee-Shirt of the weekend for sale at the desk ; 'Humanity Is A Disease'.
A difficult act to follow, but Absolute Body Control managed it. Dirk Ivens has been around forever, years ago being part of the highly influencial Klinik outfit. Here with his partner in crime Eric Van Wonterghem they show great enthusiasm and deliver a fine headline set.
It was back to The Caves early Sunday evening for the hardened Rivetheads !! I thought I had wandered into the wrong venue when I was met by the sight of a band onstage with ... guitars !! Rumour had it that there might have been one such instrument played over the previous 48 hours, but I certainly didn't remember seeing it. The band in question turned out to be Head Trauma, and they weren't my cup of tea - sounding more like they should be at Download.
They were followed by - shock, horror - ANOTHER group with guitars. Tin Omen were much better. A more Trad Goth type sound and an excellent female vocalist. They soon had a few people dancing and their set included a great cover (I am partial to a cover or two - you have a job to beat Libitina's 'Gothic Pepole') of 'Confide In Me'. I would like to see these again in the near future.
'Normality' was restored by the excellent Pre Emptive Strike 0.1. Formed in 2002 the main Strike duo of Jim 'The Blaster' on vocals and Cryon (Synths) were joined by a girl wearing a gas mask. Their brand of EBM had plenty of meaty songs and on tonights performance I would say it's well worth checking out their 2006 debut Long Player 'Lethal Defence Systems' (which is on Infected Recordings).
More old school Goth followed with Voices Of Masada. Making no secret of their influences (Sisters, Fields, Mission) Voices were right up my street. They've been around for a while now, but appear to have lost none of their enthusiasm. Their set just flew by.
Dirk Ivens and Erik V.W. reappear in the guise of Sonar. A real mishmash of Industrial, Techno and Noise the 2 protaganists stand face to face on stage - sending out an almighty sound towards the audience ! Again they get a positive reaction.
If you have survived this far then there is no way headliners Grendel will let you down !! These boys certainly know how to get the adrenaline flowing ... Coming on at around 1.30am the diehards near the stage are soon using up any remaining energy they have left. Pounding beat follows pounding beat with the frenzied vocals adding a great edge. 'Prescription ; Medicide' was a Classic but surely the 3 year wait for 'Harsh Generation' will be worth it. On tonights showing I can't wait for it's release. As Grendel brought Dark City '07 to a brutal end surely not many people could have gone home unhappy !!
A total blast from start to finish, if EBM / Industrial is your thing you could do a lot worse than head to Edinburgh next May for Dark City '08.
How would you describe your bands sound ? HORROR BEAT
How long have you been together ? LATE 90'S IS WHEN WE GOT INTO THAT SOUND..IT WAS REALLY HARD FOR US BACK THEN SO IT TOOK US LONG UNTIL TO COME UP WITH WHAT SIVA SIX SOUNDS LIKE TODAY
Who are your biggest Influences ? ALEISTER CROWLEY- HORROR B MOVIES-SCI FI-DRYGS-PORNO-DOOMED LOVE STORIES
What are your Top 5 Albums Of All-Time ? ONLY THEATER OF PAIN-CHRISTIAN DEATH,FRONT 242- TYRANNY FOR YOU,EINSTURZENDE NEUBAUTEN -1/2 MENSCH,SHEEP ON DRUGS-GREATEST HITS,MINISTRY-KEFALI
What are your Favourite 3 songs of All-Time ? DAF-DER SHERIF,CRAMPS -HYMAN FLY,GUTRUN GUT -BUTTERFLY
If you could play one 'dream gig' anywhere in the world where would you choose ? THE CITY OF ANGELS ...WITH CHRISTIAN DEATH ...GOD..COMBICHRIST...AND CELTIC FROST
If you could pick one musician to guest on your next Album who would it be ?APHEX TWIN...ALL THE WAY...
Who would be your 'fantasy date' for a night out ? ALEISTER CROWLEY+ALIEN JOURGENSEN IN A RED FAST CAR WITH 10 GRAMS FROM THE GOOD WHITE SHIT...
Click on the link below to go to Siva Six Official Website.
Amazingly SmashedPete wasn't TOO late picking me up, and we were off and running fairly early on the Friday morning. "We're On The Road To Whitby ..."
It's a great feeling ; the whole weekend ahead of you at one of my very favourite places. A great selection of tracks (both on tape & MP3 Player !?!) - The Damned, The Mission, The Sisters etc. - raised the spirits even higher and somewhere on the journey we were caught by The P[olar Bear and Rachel. As Whitby neared 'Dominion' gave way to 'This Corrosion' ... and we knew that the fun was about to start !!
After unpacking it was straight down tp The Shambles for the Unscene Magazine Meet-Up. As we walked into the bar I heard a voice call my name - no I wasn't hallucinating !! It was Del sitting at a table by the window. The Guns crew had arrived on Wednesday. There was no sign of Max however ... He arrived around 20 minutes later looking - it has to be said - very rough indeed !! Was it a good idea for someone who obviously has no idea at all about 'pacing himself' to arrive as early as Wednesday ??
For the past couple of years myself and Dr Skubbins had somehow managed to avoid meeting each other. This was rectified today - and I met Mrs Skubbins too ! Mark, the editor of Unscene, was there and managed to sell me a couple of back issues of his excellent mag. After a very pleasant hour and a half Pete & I wandered down to the Spa to get our Wristbands, and have a quick look around. I was tempted by a Front 242 CD that I'd been after for a while !!
We got back to the Spa early evening in time for the first band. Craig was chatting away to a healthy sized crowd that had gathered. He asked if anyone was here for the first time - and one brave soul put their hand up. WGW is so good that everyone just comes back time after time after time ....
Razorblade Kisses were up first and for me were the only band that I wasn't impressed by of the 7 that we saw at this Whitby. Two girl vocalists - never a bad thing - but their songs just didn't really go anywhere for me. Dust followed and were pretty impressive but things really kicked off with the next lot. The Soho Dolls were very 80's Electro-ish with plenty of catchy songs. Not 'Goth' as such, but they got the audience moving and went down very well (After all, most Goths are partial to The Human League / Soft Cell / Duran etc). The final song 'Stripper' saw the attractive singer left wearing ... not a lot. I'm surprised Smashed didn't try to get onstage with her !?!
Headliners were The Last Dance from the U S of A !! We'd seen them before at WGW a few years back and enjoyed them Tonight they were superb ! Full of energy and verve, there were lots of danceable songs and plenty of banter with the crowd. They jokingly (presumably) slagged the Cyber Scene ... and their Guitarist had the most Cyber hairstyle of the whole weekend ! For the final encore their was a mass stage invasion and sing-a-long. Great value.
Saturday morning was spent looking around the stalls ... and buying another CD - well, where else apart from Camden would you find the new Angelspit Album with a CD of remixes thrown in ??Via the WGW Forum I had arranged the first Goth Pool Tournament for 3pm at The Met bar. despite lots of cynical 'nobody will turn up' comments from Smashed & THe Bear there were 8 competitors who started.
The Final saw CyberAndy take on Gothdadin a best-of-three shootout. There was a certain inevitability that - with it being Goth Pool - it would all be on the final black ... and so it proved to be the case. One frame all, and just one ball left on the table. Andy cooly rolled the crucial ball into the middle pocket to claim the Title !?! Generously he gave the prize of a box of Jaffa Cakes to Gothdad ! This will DEF. become a regular event at WGW .....
After a shower and something to eat, by the time we reached the Spa we had unfortunately missed Rome Burns. Pete & I had seen them a couple of years back supporting NFD and had thought they were pretty impressive.
Machine Gun Symphony and Bella Morte were both very good, but the stars for me were Cruxshadows. I was near the front and bouncing to them - plenty of bleeps and beats !! I thought they were great. Interestingly some people later thought they hadn't been very good. It just goes to show how any one gig can be so different for two people. Lots of it depends on how you feel, your mood, thoughts, level of vodka intake, etc rather than if it's actually a good 'performance' by the band. Plenty of punters were dancing away to The Cruxshadows set and seemed to be really into them. I would go and see them again if I get the chance.
Lots of late night dancing followed. Max seemed to have brought along most of his family, and Del's wife-to-be was on fine form.
Sunday morning was a bit cold and windy - especially up at The Abbey !! Pete and I then revisited The Met for a few more frames of Pool before going to the Football. October '06 had been a tight match - 1/0 to The Gazette so the large away following were hopeful of a victory today ! Hopes were soon dashed however as a couple of early Goals put Athletico Gazette in control. The Goths were unlucky to twice hit the bar, but were outclassed and ended up getting thumped 7 - 1.
Rupert - whom we had met at the Pool Competition - had an exhibition of Photos on at the Art Gallery in the park, and this was well worth a look. The pictures were excellent, but really came to life when viewed through the special 3D glasses.
Food isn't a major priority over the weekend, but Andy was starving by now. A trip to the Seafront found a cafe and a hearty tea of fish and chips hit the spot. Just the job before a nights bopping at Sexy Sunday !!
We warmed up with some banging Cyber, then popped into The Elsinor for a quick couple. You could feel the heat as you entered The Met - as ever at Sexy Sunday the dancefloor was pretty full all night !?! Industrial mixes with classic Goth and EBM - with the occasional pop classic (Kaisers, Killers) thrown in. The 'Can't Get You Out Of My Head' remix (? by Cyber Axis) is always a favourite.
The time just whizzes by, and before you know it it's 1.45am and time to make that last walk back up the hill ....
This had been a top, top WGW - for me as good as any I've been to. Great bands, superb music, brilliant people ; and Whitby being just the best place to be. You just can't beat it !!!!!!!!!!!A.W.
PROFILE OF AMON ZERO OF XYKOGEN
How would you describe your sound ?? Dancefloor electronica, with an experimental edge. Techno-industrial. People sometimes refer to our sound as futurepunk or EBM.
How long have you been together ?? I formed Xykogen in 2004, and got together the live lineup in early 2006. Before that, I'd been in (Wasp Factory Recordings artists) Arkam Asylum since 1999.
Favourite Band Of All-Time ?? Nine Inch Nails, I'd say. Runners-up would include David Bowie, Devo, Dead Kennedys, Throbbing Gristle, and Skinny Puppy.
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ?? The downward spiral - Nine Inch Nails Are we not men? We are devo! - Devo Fresh fruit for rotting vegetables - Dead Kennedys Too dark park - Skinny Puppy Compulsion - Earth Loop Recall
Fav. 3 songs of All-Time ?? Life on mars - David Bowie Zero-sum - Nine Inch Nails Gut feeling/slap your mammy - Devo
If u could play a dream gig anywhere in the world where would u play, and which 3 other bands would play ?? Nine Inch Nails, Skinny Puppy, Combichrist and Xykogen at the Whisky a go go in LA ;)
Favourite drink ?? Single malt or Jack Daniel's.
Which musician would u choose to guest on your next Album ?? Genesis P Orridge.
Who would be your Fantasy date for a Nite out ?? Aleister Crowley.
PROFILE OF MARK FROM XKYOGEN
How would you describe your sound ?? A natural yet innovative progression from the Deep Ipswich Ambient Spoon Sounds scene of the mid to late 90s.
How long have you been together ?? I don`t think I`ve ever been together. But thank you for suggesting that I can still fake the appearance thereof.
Favourite Band Of All-Time ?? Public Enemy pre 1992.
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ?? Chill Out by The KLF. 45 minute trip across the US with hallucinogens. Whats not to love? It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold us Back by Public Enemy - the finest hip hop album ever and quite close to being one of the finest industrial albums ever also. We can argue that last bit if you have a few days spare. Disintegration by The Cure. because it`s lovely. The Downward Spiral by NIN. Because it went grr arrgh at me in all the right ways when I was a young lad not getting enough head and that seemed to make things better. Screamadelica by Primal Scream. Anyone who says an Acid House version of the Rolling Stones (when they were good) isn`t a great thing should have their ears cut off because they clearly don`t need them. This list may change tommorow. As it should.
Fav. 3 songs of All-Time ?? Never really thought about that sort of thing before. Off the top of my head, Hurt by NIN, Until She Comes by the Psychedelic Furs and the Theme from Fraggle Rock.
If u could play a dream gig anywhere in the world where would u play, and which 3 other bands would play ?? I`d do a music concrete piece at The White House composed to be performed on JCB Diggers. Einsturzende Neubaten could support doing a reprise of their London ICA performance, The KLF could turn up and play whatever they liked on using whatever plant hire equipment they`d got their hands on and Chris De Burgh because there might be beautiful ladies who needed saving.
Favourite drink ?? The one before the one that makes me get bolshy.
Who would be your Fantasy date for a Nite out ?? ( Audrey Hollander. We`d probably stay in though.
This review of Fields is by Andrew Collins.
From the very moment the first bars of 'The 24th Moment' sounded out there was no doubt that this was really happening. After a few years away Fields Of The Nephilim were back and ready to deliver one of the most blistering yet moving sets of their 24 year career.
One of the most anticipated gigs in a very long time had been announced exactly two months earlier, and from every part of the globe Nephilim fans old and new descended on London for something that many prayed they might one day be witness to. I say this for Fields Of The Nephilim concerts aren't just random events, but highly anticipated ritual acts that call out to everyone, everywhere.
Following the ambience of 'The 24th Moment' came the intro for 'Shroud'. As the opening track from the acclaimed 'Mourning Sun' Album it set the pace for the rest of the evening - building from a magnanimous beginning to a blistering finish, making way immediately for 'Straight To The Light'. This was the first time any of these tracks had been played live.
Enter Carl McCoy, all in black, wearing his talismatic drifter-style hat ceremoniously dusted down for the occasion. He emerged from the dry ice to rapturous applause, like an old friend returning from a desert wilderness. This was something that Carl and the band had been waiting for - and here we all were ; 3,000 strong experiencing it live where The Nephilim last played exactly 11 years to the day.
Next up was 'Penetration', a stark reminder of just how hard they can be when they choose. Coming from the dark headscape that was 1996 Album 'Zoon' it was a statement that this event wasn't going to be treated with an air of calm comfort.
Then an early surprise, a beautiful rendition of 'Dawnrazor', which actually sounds so fresh today - yet familiar enough for the first round of crowd surfing and pyramid building to go into effect - telling us that yes this really was a time to rejoice and enjoy.
Stepping forward one Album the audience were treated to 'Moonchild'. expecting a return back to 'Mourning Sun' The Astoria got 'The watchman' instead. Not played live for over 16 years, the crowd suddenly knew that it was going to be a night to remember.
After this we got Zoon Part Three - wakeworld, which flowed seamlessly into the Set. Then it was onto 'Requiem' - a truly beautiful track. Building nicely, carried aloft by a soul-raising rhthym guitar, and for me this track flies you to far away places.
From the rousing tones of 'Requiem' it was straight into 'Xiberia' - a powerful almost Industrial slice of madness. Then the first few bars of 'Last Exit For The Lost' raised the greatest cheer of the night. A Nephilim anthem par excellence, it is almost impossible to think of it not being played. Here it was - cementing still further the fact that this was a classic Fields gig.
Hands raised in the air for the chorus ... and then it was over - the return to darkness meaning the band had left the stage. It was time enough away for Carl to change into a white shirt. For encores we got 'Xodus', a Single from the 'Zoon' Album which was quickly followed by another sweet excess in the form of 'Love Under Will'.
After this epic we felt we had been blessed enough for one night, yet there was no way Carl and company were not going to give us 'Mourning Sun', which climaxes the most recent Album. Even after Carl vanished for the last time, the band remained to make sure nothing was lost from the powerful studio version of the song.
The fact that Fields Of The Nephilim can just waltz back on stage after a time away, and have the audience eating out of their hands from start to finish says something very important. Some thought, or wondered, whether they could still do it - but this was a spine tingling reminder that they can. It was a performance that showed the world that The Nephilim have never been away - they have merely been pondering their next move.
It is safe to assume that we can expect more from Fields Of The Nephilim sooner rather than later - allowing the whole ritual to begin all over again and taking the band places that only the imagination can comprehend.
I look forward eagerly to that time.
Click on the link below for another Fields review + Pictures.
FIELDS AT THE ASTORIA
I'd been briefly into The Nephilim many years ago. I had the 2nd Album and live one on cassette and used to play them in the car when I first passed my test - but for whatever reason I'd lost interest and never got them on CD
I wasn't sure what to expect, and I'd heard a rumour that it was just one original member (Carl) and a load of disinterested session musicians and maybe a drum machine. I'm pleased to report they sounded excellent. Dynamic, punchy, loud, and I surprised myself my recognising some of the songs from all those years ago.
The Astoria was dangerously hot, and we were mostly drinking cans of Strongbow. As always capacirt gigs at The Astoria seem more packed than at other venues. Towards the end of the gig I had a wander and found that they had a couple of massive fans (of the blowing air variety !) upstairs. It was like heaven.
PROFILE OF STAR INDUSTRY (Belgian Goth Band)
1. How would you describe your sound ? Anthemic rock with a touch of Electronica, leant towards the dark staples of Goth Music.
2. How long have you been together ? We saw the light of day sometime in '96. The year after that they entered the Studio and came out with the first CD 'Iron Dust Crush'. Immediately they gained a lot of positive response in the Press all over Europe. This resulted in their first Festival Gigs in Germany, Belgium and the UK. The song 'Nineties' topped the Alternative Charts in Israel and is still a Dancefloor filler in Clubs.
During the Summer of '99 the 'New Millenium E.P.' was released at that years EuroRock Festival in Belgium. This was followed in '01 by the full CD 'Velvet'. During this period Star Industry played a lot of Festivals.
Now our new Album 'Last Crusades' has been released in April '07.
3. What are your 5 Favourite Albums of All-Time ? There are many ... Ziggy Stardust - David Bowie Seventeen Seconds - The Cure First And Last And Always - The Sisters Of Mercy Once Upon A Time - Siouxsie And the Banshees Electric Shades - March Violets
4. What are your Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ? Again so many ... Alice - The Sisters Of Mercy Israel - Siouxsie And The Banshees Sanctuary - The Cult
5. Favourite Drink ? Lots of Belgian beer and Whisky !
6. If you could play a 'Dream Gig' where would it be, and with whom ? Red Square, Moscow with NiN, Marilyn Manson and David Bowie.
7, Which Musician would you get to Guest on your next Album ? Mike Garson, the pianist with David Bowie. A duet with Susan Janet Ballion (aka Siouxsie). And of course the one and only David Bowie.
8. Who would be your Fantasy Date for a Nite out ? Maybe Angelina Jolie and another 3000 ... chicks whose names I forget !!!
We came to worship at the Temple Of Trent Reznor, and surely nobody could have left the Academy disappointed. The intensity of the performance was unbelievable ; there was no 'going through the motions' tonight !!
'Somewhat Damaged' kicked things off in fine style, and it was just onwards and upwards from there. The crowd were jumping from the start, and full of an energy that fed back to the band. 'Help Me I Am In Hell' may be a title that sums up some of Trent's well documented personal problems, but the audience were in heaven.
Surely it is one of musics great ironies that an Artists torment can spawn songs that are celebrated so esctatically. The pace is unrelenting. Time after time hundreds of arms are raised in the air as one. New Single 'Survivalism' sounds great, and whets the appetite for the forthcoming 'Year Zero' Album.
As the Set nears a climax 'The Day The World Went Away' is a mere prelude to an unmatchable finish. After being Sonically Assulted, suddenly there is total quiet for the religious experience that is 'Hurt'. It's certainly a moment .... 'The Hand That Feeds' then crashes in, and of course it's 'Head Like A Hole' that winds up the whole thing ; "I'd Rather DIE Than Give You Control ..."
The light show had been superb, the band excellent and Trent Reznor amazing. Nine Inch Nails are the kings of Industrial Nihilistic Rock. WHAT AN INCREDIBLE NITE !!!!
Setlist. Somewhat Damaged. Lost. Heresy. March Of The Pigs. Piggy. Ruiner. Closer. Burn. Gave Up. Help Me I Am In Hell. Eraser. Wish. The Big Come Down. Survivalism. Only. Suck. The Day the World went Away. Hurt. The Hand That feeds. Head Like A Hole.A.W.
'Her name is Rio ...' was blasting out over the stereo as we spotted The Abbey through the rain - hey, Goths have always been fans of Simon and co. !! As ever it's a great moment when you see Whitby in the distance.
If anyone wants to know why Goth Refuses To Die then they should just attend WGW (or watch the bit on The Culture Show !?!). It truly is an event, and one where everyone is so friendly ; old, young. very young ...... all descend on Whitby to eat, shop, drink, dance, pose, remember their youth, relive their youth, consume half pints of cider and black (through a straw of course so that it doesn't spoil your lipstick) and generally have a GREAT time.
First surprise was the return of SmashedPete !! We walk into The Resolution and he's standing at the bar. Excellent ! Smashed had actually managed to get organized and buy a ticket ; well, miracles do happen occasionally ....
At The Spa we caught most of Trauma Pet, who sounded very good - then it was The Vampire Beach Babes. I have to say the girls didn't look as good 'in the flesh' as on google images but I really enjoyed them. WGW Legend Geoff The Neff was already doing his own totally unique Whitby Dance through the crowds !?!
By now we'd bumped into Max & Del (who was wearing a very cool hat - did he take it off all weekend ???). As ever Max had new History Of Guns Promo CD's to give away, and I got a namecheck on this one !!!! I've made it at Whitby at last ..........
Headliners were The Damned, and they were great. The Captain was sporting a new 'heavy' hairstyle (we'd spotted him in the town earlier with his 'normal' hair) and Dave Vanian looked the same as ever - these people that dye their hair black, I don't know !?!
The set fizzed from the opening 'New Rose'. 'Elouise' was greeted like the WGW classic it is and one of my long time personal favs 'I Just Can't Be Happy Today' was brilliant. The Captain gave us a choice of final encore and 'Smash It Up' was chosen. Smashed and Cyber were jumping with glee to that one !!
As is the way at The Spa after the bands there is a good hour+ of top DJ action - mucho dancing into the small hours.
After some Saturday shopping (I went mad and brought a shirt) Sarah a & I attended a very interesting book launch in The Rifle Club (complete with free sarnies).
We met up for tea with a friend at The Resolution, drank quite a bit of wine then it was off to The Spa for another superb evening. Inertia were excellent but the real treat of the whole weekend proved to be main band XPQ-21. Loud, Hard and Dancy ... the vocalist also had the sideburns of WGW !!
It's a bit of a tradition for bands to do covers, and these guys did a storming 'Bela Lugosi'. The crowd loved them, and I'll DEF. be checking out XPQ-21's stuff in the future.
Smashed & I danced the night away until the bitter end to the sounds of The Mission, Killing Joke, New Model Army and many more.
Sunday afternoon saw a bitter battle in The Goths v The Gazette football match. The Goths put in a sterling performance - and deserved a draw at least. It all kicked off at one stage, with a mass brawl in the centre circle. The April rematch should be a tense affair ......
There's only one way to end a WGW ... it has to be Sexy Sunday !! The Met was heaving and the dancefloor packed all night. DJ's Glenn Psychosis and Axy spend as much time dancing onstage as DJ-ing. They play an unbeatable mix of classics and 80's stormers. A true highlight of the weekend was dancing and singing aong to 'Stand And Deliver' !!??!!
We lasted until nearly 1am ... not bad for oldies. Sarah declined one last walk up the hill - so we had a taxi (not quite the same as walking ...).
Another TREMENDOUS WGW was over. It is my favourite weekend of the year - and it's TWICE a year. HORRAY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Roll on April '07 ...........CYBER A.W.
PROFILE OF SKINJOB.
What sort of Music do you play ? Heavily EBM influenced Electronica.
How long have you been together ? Skinjob was formed in '91 but I quickly realised that the technology needed to get the sound we wanted simply wasn't attainable at the time. We wrote some songs in the early 90's (including 'Insects & Metaphors' and 'Move') but never recorded them properly (however it's strange how the lyrics are still appropiate). I decided to push forward with the project after upgrading my Studio just over 2 years ago and did a few Remixes for people like KiEw and XPQ-21 which got me known.
Favourite Band of All-Time ? Difficult to single one out - I grew up listening to Depeche Mode. Nitzer Ebb and FLA who I still like, but I'm also a fan of Covenant, VNV, and CombiChrist.
Best Gig you have ever been to ? Nitzer Ebb at Agra Halle, Leipzig 2006. The first third of the 8000+ crowd turned into a pit which was INSANE.
Favourite Drink ? Typically anything with alcohol in it, but I have an affinity for good German beer. actually any German beer is better than what we get over here.
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ? Violator - Depeche Mode. Absolutely perfect. Wonderful Life - Black. He spent 10 years trying to get somewhere, finally got a deal and recorded this. Unfortunately the 2nd Album wasn't great. Pretty Hate Machine - NiN. Very influential in shaping modern Electronic music. Rendezvous - Jean Michelle Jarre. One of the pieces of music 'Ron's Piece' was going to be the first piece of music recorded from Spaceas Jarre's friend Ron McNair was an Astronaught on the Challenger Shuttle which unfortunately was destroyed. Artificial Soldier - Front Line Assembly. FLA back on form with a superb Album.
Favourite 3 Songs of All-Time ? World In My Eyes - Depeche Mode. The first track on the seminal Album Violator - still a fav today. Godhead - Nitzer Ebb. Remember hearing this back in the day and thinking 'whoah !' Like Tears In Rain - Covenant. I really like Eskil Simmonson's work and a great use of the Nord Lead on this Blade Runner influenced track.
Which Musician would you have Guest on your next Album ? Probably Jay Smith from Deviant UK - he has an amazing voice plus he's said he'd do it.
Where would you play your Dream Gig, and which 3 Bands would play ? Probably Agra Halle in Leipzig for WGT or the Main Stage at M'era Luna (but I'd settle for a Hangar). As for other Bands ..., not that you would probably ever see them on the same stage for the same show but the Bands I'd be honoured to Support would be Nitzer Ebb, Covenant and VNV - all have inspired and shaped me musically.
Who would be your Fantasy Date for a Nite Out ? Probably Bettie Page. Well - when she was younger obviously.
The debut NiN Album was written, arranged and performed by Trent Reznor. Combining catchy melodies with dark introspective lyrics Reznor spoke of this Album being "A sincere statement of what was in his head at the time." It was a release that set a benchmark for certain types of 'Alternative' Music.
As track one - the fantastic 'Head Like A Hole' - kicks in the power is there for all to hear. Anger, frustration, angst .... As with all truly great Albums each song totally stands up on it's own, yet also they all complement each other 'Something I Can Never Have' follows 'Sanctified' and you just don't want the CD to reach it's end !!
Incredibly Pretty Hate Machine spent 2 years in the Charts in America, and became one of the first Independently released records to go Platinum. All the instruments were played by Reznor ; maybe he'd rather die than give anyone else control ...
Over the past 18 - yes, eighteen ... - years this release has just grown and grown on me, and influenced my musical taste. I love it more now than I did in the mid-90's !?!
Still sounding vibrant, powerful and fresh Pretty Hate Machine is probably my number one thing for putting on if I am feeling angry / frustrated / pissed off !!
Trent Reznor - we salute you .....A.W.
'All washed up and drugged out in Hamberg ...'
Those were the rumours surrounding Andrew Eldritch following the break up of The Sisters Of Mercy in 1985 and the battle over band names with a certain Mr Hussey. Surely The Sisters were over ....
A period of relative calm followed, before an announcement that Mr E had recruited the goddess that was Patricia Morrison to be at his side - and there would be a new Album to follow (in those days that didn't mean a 16+ year wait ....).
And so it came to pass ... in 1987 the epic that is 'Floodland' was released to the world. Magnificent in EVERY way, from the superb cover right through to the closing track.
'This Corrosion' had been released as a Single. On first hearing it sounded incredible. It still does today. Layer after layer of building climaxing with Eldritch's call to arms ; "Floodland And Driven Apart !!"
Worries over this record damaging The Sisters history were immediately banished. It was a total classic. Everything and more than the die hard fans could have possibly hoped for.
'Dominion/Mother Russia' is an opening track to die for. Seven minutes of gothic splendour. 'Flood 1' follows then 'Lucretia' andd so on and so on ... The vocals are perfect. The sound of a man stating his case with a certainty bordering on arrogance.
From the driven dancefloor fillers such as 'Lucretia' through to the beautiful '1959' this is an Album from heaven.
What happened after this has been debated (and still is !?!) endlessly. Maybe it was just IMPOSSIBLE to follow this.
As the GREAT man himself sang "I've Got Nothing To Say I Haven't Said Before."
Undoubtedly one of my top 10 Albums of All-Time !!!!A.W.
"They said go to Infest, I said NO, NO, NO !!"
If you like your EBM/Cybergoth then it doesn't come much harder than this !?!
Infest is an annual three day music Festival held at Bradford University featuring Alternative Electronic music acts from various genres ; Industrial, EBM, Futurepop, Synthpop and PowerNoise.
Infest was born in early 1998 through the efforts of 3 students at the Uni. The concept was a one day event for local Goth bands. Even before it started however, it spiraled into an altogether bigger beast when the Students Union agreed that funds could be found to book some much bigger acts - notably Gothic/Deathrock-ers Alien Sex Fiend.
The student organisers were already fans of the Whitby Gothic Weekend and took the idea of Infest to the WGW Festival goers and traders to gauge how popular the show might be. The response was positive and the first Infest was confirmed as 14 & 15 August '98.
The following year the Festival paid more attention towards the electronic side of the Goth / Industrial scene by booking Apoptygma Berserk for their first UK show.
By 2000 the Students Union felt that they were unable to carry the costs of the Festival any longer. In addition the original students who had promoted the show had all moved on. Fortunately an independent Goth / Industrial Promoter and DJ stepped in to fill the void. As a result of the heavy involvement with Terminal Productions, another twist to the shows music style took place. This defined Infest in it's current form with it's theme moving from Goth / Industrial to Alternative Electronic.
Since 2000 Infest has gained an International reputation, with festival goers travelling from as far as Canada and acts flying from as far as Australia to play. The show continues to provide a market for traders, which helps to bring the music and the lifestyle of the fans together.
There is also a full Festival programme where Nightclubs, DJ's, Bands and Businesses can make their voices heard. Infest is supported by a number of Electronic Record Labels, notably Ant-Zen and Hands Productions. It has also been sponsored by the online music store Music Non Stop, the drink Jagermeister and the software publisher Ableton. The Festival was originally known as 'InFest', however in 2003 it's name was altered to 'Infest' which is how it remains.
Infest is about music, dressing up, and having a good time by dancing for hours to Alternative Electronic Music. It's the 10th Anniversary in August '07. Smashed and Cyber WILL BE THERE !!??!!
'98. Alien Sex Fiend, Dust To Dust, Horatii, Leechwoman, Man(i)kin, Nekromantik, Passion Play, Sneaky Bat Machine, Squid, Ultraviolence.
'99. Fri. DJ Wars ; Bratcave Vs Deathstar Disco. Sat. Apoptygma Berserk, Faithful Dawn, Killing Miranda, Sneaky Bat Machine, Man(i)kin. Sun. Spahn Ranch, Inertia, Narcissus Pool.
'00. Fri. Ultraviolence, Synapscape. Sat. VNV Nation, Manuskript, MS Genteer, Intra Venus, Project X, Void Construct. Sun. In Strict Confidence, Dream Disciples, Imminent, Man(i)kin, Libitina
'01. Fri. Inertia, The Nine, Swarf. Sat. Suicide Commando, Beborn Betron, P.A.L. Leechwoman, Katscan, Illumina. Sun. Covenant, Dive, Icon Of Coil, Monolith, Goteki.
'02. Fri. XPQ-21, Psyche, Revolution By Night. Sat. Funker Vogt, Sonar, S.P.O.C.K. Winterkalte, Greenhaus, Synthetic. Sun. Mesh, Noisex, Welle : Erdball, Asche, Aslan Faction.
'03. Fri. Cut.Rate.Box, Scrap, Edx, Tarantella Serpentine. Sat. God Module, Needle Sharing, Seabound, Tarmurred, Culture Kulyur, Jesus Loves America. Sun. VNV Nation, Hypnoskull, (SITD), Resurrection Eve, Arkam Asylum.
'04. Fri. Lights Of Euphoria, Ah Cama-Sotz, Action Directe. Sat. Suicide Commando, Proyects Mirage, Plastic, Combichrist, Angel Theory, Skinflick. Sun. Assemblage 23, Converter, Spetsnaz, Mono No Aware, Silence Is Sexy.
'05. Fri. Fixmer/McCarthy, Powderpussy, Univaque. Sat. Covenant, Punch Inc. Decoded Feedback, HIV+, The Azoic, Tin Omen. Sun. Blutengel, KiEw, Iris, Final Selection, Deviant UK.
'06. Fri. Lab 4, Destroid, Schmoof. Sat. Rotersand Architect, Unter Null, Reaper, S.K.E.T. O.V.N.I. Sun. Front Line Assembly, Wai Pi Wai, Stromkern, Frozen Plasma, Autoclav 1.1
PROFILE OF JAY (DEVIANT UK).
How would you describe your sound ? Dark Electronic pop aimed at the Dancefloor ... with something Gothic going on in the mix. Deviant UK has been described recently as 'VNV Nation with Gary Numan providing vocals' ; I can live with that description.
How long have you been together ? I started writing songs for the first Album 'Barbed Wire Star' in Summer '04. I'm nearly done writing the 2nd one 'Very Bad Things'.
Who are your favourite Band of All-Time ? Gary Numan, Project Pitchfork, Rotersand, and Rammstein are all big favourites.
Favourite Drink ? Personally I don't drink (rest assured, I make up for it with far too many other vices) but my keyboard player BJ makes up for it with his intake of vodka - which is truly frightening.
Best Gig you have ever been to ? So many great ones but I don't think anyone can touch Rammstein for live shows. Outrageously good.
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ? Gary Numan 'The Pleasure Principle' or 'Telekon', Rammstein 'Mutter', Project Pitchfork 'Daimonian', VNV Nation 'Empires' and - if only to fit in with my image - Deviant UK 'Barbed Wire Star'.
Favourite 3 songs of All-Time ? That's a tough one ... Right now 'Are Friends Electric', 'Timekiller' and 'Space Oddity' spring to mind - but there are thousands.
Where would be your Dream Gig and who else would play ? Somewhere in Germany - maybe WGT - and any of the aforementioned Bands would be welcome.
Which Musician would you have to guest on your next Album ? Richard Kruspe or Matt Bellamy on Guitar. Krischan from rotersand would be the perfect Producer though. He is incredible.
Fantasy Date for a night out ? Believe me, you don't want to know anything about my Fantasy Date.
Was it really 6 months ago ... sometimes it goes quickly, sometimes slowly ; WGW is ALWAYS an eagerly anticipated weekend !! This was my 5th whitby, and it was onn the way there in April '04 that Max Rael stuck a CD through our Car window ....
6am Friday morning and Max is landing in London from his honeymoon in Thailand. 14 hours later and Guns are opening WGW in fine style ! As Craig said in his introduction, they deserved to be on the Stage in view of the number of free CD's they've given away over the past couple of years or so. A healthy sized crowd gathered down the front for a superb set whose highlights included 'Empty Eyes' and 'Obedient Servants'. Over the weekend lots of people were very positive about History Of Guns performance.
Next up were Swarf, who were also very good. Sounding a bit All About Eve ish (nothing wrong with that !!) vocalist Liz was particularly impressive. I was apparently down the front dancing with Gerbil, but I have to say I don't remember that ! ... too much Vodka !?! Although the Vodka probably helped me to enjoy the next band ; Misty. A trio with Dave Ball on one synth and an ex Psychic TV member on the other, the frontwoman certainly LOVED herself !! They were OK, and ended with a version of 'Sex Dwarf' - unfortunately Marc didn't appear ....
Headliners were Manuskript. They are WGW regulars, last playing in October '04. The vocalist has plenty of energy and their bouncy numbers go down well. 'It's A Sin' is a great encore !
The weather was amazingly good all weekend - incredible considering how it had been earlier in the week .... As usual it was GREAT to meet lots of (vaguely) familiar faces, and also a few new ones. I even discovered OtherWorld (from the Forum) was staying at the same B & B as us !! Saturday tea-time in The Resolution ; a woman (probably in her 50's) leans across and says "Excuse me, but just what is it you lot believe in ??" Well - I told her that this was a very good question, and started my reply ... an hour or so later Sarah had to get me to stop !?!
Saturday evening History Of Guns were playing the 'Overspill' event at the Met ... some of us were on the Guestlist. There wasn't a massive turnout, but again Del and the boys turned in a superb gig. Guns really are a top live band.Max was then keen to get over to The Spa as they had a Rider over there -
Lager, Guinness, Wine & Vodka apparently (but not any young, nubile Whitby Virgins ...). As we arrived Frankenstein were on ; they got a good reception but weren't my cup of tea. Sarah told me that the singer had a bin liner over his head !!! A few more drinks and Breath Of Life headlined. I found them pretty dreary, and thought they went on far too long.
The last hour at The Spa was Classic music ; 'Sanctuary' and 'Body Electric' got an airing ... and we finished off Guns rider !! It was another 2am walk up Prospect Hill ...
Once again The Goths lost in the highly entertaining Sunday afternoon Foolball match - 7-2 I think to the Gazette. Faith appeared to be still under the influence from her Party that had ended at 7am Sunday morning .....
Sexy Sunday at The Met was packed out and sSUPERB. The atmosphere is great and the dancefloor ALWAYS full. 'Love Like Blood' is of course played, along with The Sisters, The Damned and many, many more. It's probably the best Nite of WGW !! The drink flowed - wine & vodka - and the time just whizzed by. Before you know it it's 1am and time to go home.
Yet again another INCREDIBLY BRILLIANT Whitby Goth Weekend. The comedown starts when u get home ....
A statement from sources friendly to Mr E in 1997 (note the year !!!).
'During 1997 The Sisters performed a series of blistering live performances at shows in Europe and in the UK, not to mention a vicious commando raid on American Rock sensibilities. Since then it has become apparent that the drought of new material may be coming to an end, that Eldritch's political manoeuvres against the awesome corporate inanity of eastWest will finally - and soon - see band and label parting company.
These are interesting and promising times for a band which has refysed to be swept under the carpet, despite being effectively 'on strike'. The public resurgance of The Sisters is promised next year with a "stonking" new Single and Album to follow.'
WELL, TEN YEARS LATER ..............A.W.
Goth in 2004 ; what's it all about ???
For both the young and the not so young Goth continues to mean something, whatever that may be ....
In many ways it is retro as - without wishing to sound TOO old (!?!) - the classic bands have been & gone, and the spine-tingling records have been made. Surely nobody can ever match The Sisters at their very peak. Around '83/'84 they had EVERYTHING. The songs, the live gigs, the image, the following. the best Goth records remain TRULY exhilirating. 'Temple Of Love' can be played at 1am at Whitby and the floor will be bouncing.
Siouxsie is still an icon, looking and sounding remarkably good after all these years. For me 'Juju' was a PIVOTAL Album ; "We are entranced, SPELLBOUND". Sure The Cult went bad ... but 'Sanctuary' still rocks as much as ever.
I can't see any of the current bands making records to match those. Remembering the first time I heard 'This Corrosion' on the radio ; what a comeback by Eldritch. The perennial 'Great Goth Debate' !! Last 'new' Album ; Vision Thing in 1990. THAT'S 14 YEARS AGO !!! INCREDIBLE ... I'd love to know what this man does in his day to day existance. Does anyone out there have any idea at all ?? If so please let me know.
The first time I saw The Sisters was on 24 May '84 at The Electric Ballroom, London (with Flesh For Lulu supporting). It cost me £3.50 to get in, I still have the ticket on which it's spelt The Sisters Of Mercey !! They were BLINDING.
I've seen them many times, the last being on 3rd Sept. 2000, at Rock City Nottingham. It cost me £20. It's the only time I've seen them when I haven't enjoyed it. I thought it was awful. I thought "What am I doing here ??"
In many ways I lost interest in things 'Gothic' after that for a while. It got me thinking back to what would I rate as my favourite Sisters gig, and I think I'd have to go for when I saw them at Aylesbury Friars on 2nd Nov. '84. If memory serves me correctly it was the Black October tour. They were absolutely blinding. I will now not see them again until they release a new Album - if they (he) ever do (does). Eldritch continually puts down the 'Goth' audience. Talk about biting the hand that feeds ....
The Mission remain a very good live band. It was them headlining that took me to the Whitby Goth Weekend in April '04. It's difficult to say how thoroughly enjoyable this weekend is. If you have any interest whatsoever in 'Goth', go to the next one and you will have a ball !! It truly isn't just about the bands (thank god as 2 of Oct. '04 headliners - Zodiac Mindwarp & Alien Sex Fiend - were DIRE). It's about the place, the people, the classic tracks they play between & after the bands ; just EVERYTHING.
It's not long until Whitby April '05. As Eldritch once sang ; "It's just a kiss away, kiss away, kiss away ..."(Cyber) Andy W.
Birmingham Academy, 2.2.6.
We came to worship at the alter of Pete, Daniel, David and Kevin ... we had both hopes and fears ... Old Goths remain Old Goths because our memories of 'the great days' are so firmly etched on our hearts !! Not for no reason did Bauhaus become legends to us.
Would one evening over 20 years later ruin things forever ?? ... the hell it would !! Bauhaus were absolutely incredible. I couldn't have even faintly hoped that they would be this good !!!
There was no going through the motions ; they all looked like they were loving it. Classics such as 'Kick In The Eye', 'Dark Entries', and 'She's In Parties' had the crowd eating out of their hands. No one hour and we're gone job either ; no support, onstage at 8.35pm ... and finally finishing at around 10.25pm.
It was stunning. Daniel Ash - even with new 'Sputnik' style hairdo - remains the coolest of the cool. Pete was running round with the energy of someone half his age - only his 'bald patch' gave it away !! Shock horror headlines ; 'Goth Legend Is Losing His Hair ...'
With barely anyone under 30 in The Academy (an excellent venue) thoughts of all those years ago came flooding back ... now, just what did become of The Batcave ???
If the set was superb, the encores were even better. Storming back on with a cover of Joy Division's 'Transmission', then onto T Rex's 'Telegram Sam' and finally 'Ziggy'. As Pete put it "Daniel Ash played Guitar !!!" Returning yet again, of course it had to be 'Bela Lugosis Dead' - a true Goth Epic if ever there were one (and there are a few ....).
Oh my Goth I don't believe it, Bauhaus have never been this good before. Truly a magnificent evening.
9.5/10 ... well, they could have invited us backstage !?!A.W.
Burning From The Inside. In The Flat Field. God In An Alcove. In Fear Of Fear. Terror Couple Kill Colonel. Swing The Heartache. She's In Parties. Passion Of Lovers. Kick In The Eye. Hollow Hills. Rosegarden Funeral Of Sores. Stigmartyr Martyr. Hair Of The Dog. Dark Entries. All We Ever Wanted Was Everything. Severance. Transmission. Telegram Sam. Ziggy Stardust. Bela Lugosi's Dead.
Good weather, some decent bands, lots of nice people and a Very Sexy Sunday ! The October '05 WGW was a superb 3 days. The first surprise of the weekend was in The Resolution with the appearance of SmashedPete !! The Polar Bear had pulled in a favour (probably involving dodgy DVD's ...) and somehow found 'The Only Goth In Desborough' a ticket. Sales of John Smiths in Whitby wouldn't suffer after all .........
We arrived at The Spa on the Friday evening just as The Modern were coming on. Most certainly not a 'G' band, more influenced by 80's electropop, and all the better for that !! A bit Depechy in sound ; Sarah & I really enjoyed them as did most of the reasonably sized crowd in the hall.
It was noticeable this time that the foyer was nowhere near as packed as previously. Following the ticket fiasco of April '05 (when too many tickets were sold !) less were available this time, and they sold out very quickly.
Katscan and Mechanical Cabaret followed - both sounding pretty good. Much debate on the WGW Website Forum had followed the announcement that Dr & The Medics would be headlining ...
As it turned out they stormed it !! The Doctor is a great frontman, and the band soon had the large crowd jumping. Their set was almost entirely covers - they did play their own song 'Burn' !! - and what covers they were. 'White Wedding', 'Teenage Kicks', and 'Black Night' to name but a few. Of course 'Spirit In The Sky' got an airing !! 'Born To Be Wild' was great and they finished with 'Paranoid'. Everyone that I spoke to over the weekend had really enjoyed them.
Saturday lunchtime and some light refreshment was taken in The Pier Pub. We got chatting to a few ladies from Barnsley who were in Whitby for the day. Their coach was leaving at midnight - it was now 2pm and the woman I was talking to appeared to be well under the influence already !! I wonder what she was like 10 hours later ??
After food and wine in The Resolution we saw Deathboy (no, not SmashedPete, but a band at the Spa !!). I liked them - quite E.B.M.ish. Rico also entertained.
Top of the bill tonite were N.F.D. Apparently they'd played London the previous evening, and Bob had fallen into the audience !?! Compere Craig introduced them as 'No Falling Down' tonight Bob ....
You have to say that they sound like Fields ! Plenty of big riffs, atmospherics and growling vocals. I thought they were excellent ; Sarah hated them !?! They have a new Album out soon (their 2nd). The first is called 'No Love Lost'. 'Break The Silence' was epic. Can any Goth song possibly go on too long ?? .. Of course not !!!
At the end of the set Bob informed us in his own unique way that they wouldn't bother going off and returning again. They'd just stay where they were ! Perhaps he was struggling to move at this stage !?! 'Psychonaut' (awesome) and 'Moonchild' (classic) were performed to great acclaim. N.F.D. are as 'Goth' as they come.
Sarah was still hoping that Jayne Loves Jezebel would put in an appearance, but by 1am it was time to go home.
Sunday morning saw a quick trip to Boggle Hole. No, not the toilet Pete was using but a place a few miles from Whitby. It rained a bit, but soon the sun was out again. Overall the weather was fantastic, more like the summer than end of October.
The football match kicked off at 2pm. Well, The Goths ("Who's The Goth In The BLACK ??") were hammered 10 - 0 by Whitby Gazette. The Ref (NOT wearing black ...) even awarded a dodgy Penalty in the last minute, which a Goth hit against the bar !! The 'away' support was excellent, and lots of humerous comments abounded ("The Goths will play better when it gets dark !!). Best moment ; an American Gothette jumping the barrier at the end, her heel sticks in the mud and she went straight down. A 'Goth Lies In The Flat Field' incident if ever there was one !?!
It has been said that Sexy Sunday is the best night in Whitby. Well, I wouldn't disagree. I arrived at 8.30pm and it was already pretty full in The Met. A few Smirnoff Ices later and it was heaving. There were plenty of great outfits, and it was Tranny City !?! The DJ's played a great mix of Goth, EBM and 'others'. Thus 'Girls On Film' sat next to 'Temple Of Love', 'Personal Jesus' and 'Strict Machine'. The Dancefloor was full all evening. They even played 'Love Like Blood' twice !! Well, you just can't beat that .....
1am came round amazingly quickly, and The Goths left in a state of contented happiness ! Yes, Goths aren't always miserable. Shock, horror .....
It had been a tremendous Weekend, and it all happens again in just under 6 months !A.W.
HISTORY OF GUNS. The Doctors Tonic, Welwyn Garden City. 4 June '05.
On a dark night in the middle of WGC ; from the road to Whitby to the road to nowhere. Promises of light at the end of a very dark tunnel - History Of Guns 2005 World Tour finishes in fine style. 45 minutes of post gothic industrial noise terrorism fly by in a flash (of light). Vocalist Del, when not demanding more beer, growls away ; those deep vocals reaching for both excess and escape at the same time.
The excitement is obviously getting to Max Rael - he goes topless at one stage. Perhaps not such a good idea ! Standout tracks are 'Secret Garden' (very Sisters/Fields/Bauhaus-ish) and the closing 'Your Obedient Servants'. Guns believe all art should be free, and back this up by giving away plenty of CD's - although they're more than happy to receive cheques made payable to ........
Over 20 years of Gothic Evolution have led to this noise that is before us now, in our heads, hearts and ears. If Jesus ever did truly love The Sisters, then surely God will punish these boys ! History Of Guns ; They're Gonna Blow Your Brains Out !?!
Cyber(Mad)Andy. For More Info go to www.historyofguns.com.
Man On The Moon, Cambridge. (10.11.04.)
Is it possible to write about NFD without mentioning you-know-who ?? No - of course it isn't ...
The axis of NFD (Noise For Destruction) is Peter 'Bob' White, Simon Rippin and Tony Pettit. Bob used to sing with Sensorium, Simon drummed with The Nephilim. Thier debut release was Break THe Silence EP in Sept. '03. Since then they've been recording an Album (which has just been released) and playing some gigs, including Zillo & Dark City.
Quite why they're playing a venue as small as Man On The Moon is a mystery ; it's the first time myself & Smashedpete have been there. Great place to see a band ; you can sit down with a Pint of IPA (or was it Speckled Hen ??) and feel as though you are up onstage !! To get into the venue - a pub backroom - you go through a door marked Ladies Toilets ....
First up were local trio Rome Burns. Technical problems dogged their set ("Where's the bass gone ??") but they battled on and seemed very reasonable. No deep vocals for this lot !!
Whilst Rome Burned NFD vocalist Bob wandered around, walking into tables and generally appearing very unsteady on his feet (he has said that "NFD are a band that like to party hard .."). Not a man to argue with, incredibly Smashedpete managed to get involved in some sort of 'debate' with Bob in the Gents !!
The room isn't packed, but a fair few are present as the headliners take to the 'stage'. Augmented by 2 Guitarists, there's hardly room for the band to move. Immediately Bob's vocal growl reminds you of Carl. Those deep vocals around a great guitar sound.
The crowd soon get into it, and NFD are very impressive. If you like 'Goth' then it's highly likely you will like these boys. The set flies by ; much sounding Neph-ish, but with their own distinct style. A positive sign was that the crowd are drawn in, rather than wandering to the bar. A couple of Fields classics are thrown in at the end, and much dancing ensues.
This appears to be a band that's more than capable of standing on it's own feet ; I look forward to hearing the Album and seeing them live again ... Whitby '05 maybe ??
WHITBY GOTH WEEKEND
As Aha once sang "The Sun Always Shines On Whit-bee ..." Having spent the Thursday night with a couple of Urban Goths Sarah & I awoke in the place that is North Dalton to find ... that we couldn't find the car keys !! Was this the start of the downward spiral ?? 10 minutes of panic ended when the keys turned up !
Mid morning Friday and we were on our way. A short stop at Boggle Hole (yes ... Boggle Hole) and by lunchtime we had Whitby in our sights. Having checked in, picked up our wristbands and tag from the Pavilion the first pint tasted very nice.
There was no sign of SmashedPete or The Polar Bear anywhere ...
Our 2nd 'Psychiatric Nurses And Similar Nutters' Meet-Up was set for 4pm. Well, it was a great turn out but unfortunately Sarah & I were around an hour late (well, you know how long it takes the ladies to get ready ...). Apparently I already had an impersonator in Whitby ; Del from History Of Guns was pretending to be me at the Meet-Up !! It had turned into a 'Mini Forum Meeting', and obviously the excitement had taken it's toll on Faithais - she looked ready for bed. It was good to put faces to many of the names of Forum users.
Had the big game hunters got The Polar Bear ?? ... apparently he was still stuck in the traffic.
A lovely curry, then off to the Spa. Screaming Banshee Aircrew were already under way, and Neil had arrived & was enjoying them. As I've said before (is there anything I have left to say that I haven't said before ??) Whitby isn't just about the bands. This weekend totally illustrated this point. I thought the bands that played were incredibly average.
After The Aircrew it was Psychophile, Voltaire then Gene Loves Jezebel. I was hoping GLJ would be good, but found them totally uninspiring. They reminded me of a pub band !!
Lots of good music was played (as always) between bands, and despite her boots Sarah managed to hold her own on the dancefloor until the Cyber-beats kicked in at around 1.15am. 'Those boots weren't made for walking' ... but Sarah somehow managed to get up the hill back to the b & b !!
Saturday was again bright and sunny. A few items were purchased during the shopping, then a reviving pint in the Met was just right. The Forum Meet-Up was at 2pm in the tea-rooms, but by 1.55pm it was jam (sic) packed and we gave it a miss (was anyone brave enough to put some of The Polar Bears legendary double clotted cream on their scones ??).
Neon Zoo were doing a free gig in The Resolution at 3pm. It was again very full. I managed to find Gerbil and exchange a tenner for 'Names Are For Tombstones Baby' (a book on The Mission that I'd been after for years).
A quick trip to get changed, then back to The Resolution for a superb chicken & chips with a bottle of wine. Plenty of familiar faces were around the Spa foyer, and Neil & I did a whistle stop photo session (how Neil loved having his picture taken with the Goth Babes ...).
A few JD's went down rather well - much better than Queen Adreena or In The Nursery. Sarah & I had great fun trying to spot the men dressed as women ... and there were plenty !
As soon as The Nursery finished it was time to once more hit the floor for an hour and a half of Goth Classics. sarah's boots were better tonite, and we danced away to the likes of 'Love Cats', 'Sanctuary' & 'Dominion'. Great stuff !!
1.30am soon came round, the time speeds by. It's so easy to lose your mates at Whitby ; on the way back to base we bumped into someone looking for Billy !!
Sunday morning saw a trip up the 199 steps to the Abbey, a few photos and chats with people ... then time to hit the road. Once again CyberAndy had had a cracking WGW, as had Sarah (who was experiencing the 'full' event for the first time). In October the 80's night at Sexy Sunday beckons !!
P.S. This week Sarah's arms have been aching ... that's what approx. 2 hours+ of Goth dancing does to you !!
WHITBY GOTH WEEKEND ; OCT. '04.
Whitby has to be one of my very favourite places, and it's a great feeling as the town comes into view from a few miles away. Suddenly after weeks of anticipation The Goth Weekender is here ; time to crank up the car stereo a bit more and make sure The Sisters are blasting out ...
'And the world, the world drags me down' as Ian Astbury once sang. Here you can escape everything and it really doesn't matter what day it is. Whitby for these 2 or 3 days is about the whole experience - the people, the music, the bands, the pubs.
The Pavilion is the ideal setting. A large foyer area where you can talk without getting a sore throat, and the hall for dancing the nite away. This time it was 3 nights ... and we (or some of us) made it until the 1.30am finish every time. "Old(er) Goths Keep Going Until The Bitter End !"
Thursday we saw Corrosion, who sounded quite good then The Last Dance ; very impressive. James Rays Gangwar were due to headline but for some reason couldn't make it (was James too busy stroking Andrew Eldritch's ego ???). Manuskript stepped in at the last minute ... and played a belter ! Full of energy and verve, they were probably my favourites of the whole weekend.
It was 3am (eternal) before we got our heads down on the very comfy pillows, although Smashedpete did say he'd once rested his head on more comfortable ones ...
Friday was big boots day. Andy was a good 5 inches taller in his Uberboots, and Pete weighed at least a stone more in his !?! Via the superb WGW Website we had arranged a Psychiatric Nurses Meet-Up for Friday 3pm (Question Of The Day ; "This may sound a strange thing to say, but Are You A Psychiatric Nurse ??"). A good time was had by all who attended at The Resolution, and some non Psych. Nurses joined in also ; one of whom had played golf with Nick Faldo (very impressive ...). Pete spent most of his time saying "I'm sure that's Tonipot over there !". We had a good chat with Faithais, who seemed to be greatly enjoying herself (that's a bit of an understatement !).
Stars of the evening were The Claytown Troupe. They were playing their first gig for 12 years, and received an excellent reception. The singer gave plenty of chat, telling tales of hiding in Joe Strummers dressing room for hours many years ago. Zodiac Mindwarp headlined, and were very average. The opening 'High Priest Of Love' (apparently written about 'Our Neil') was OK, as was the closing 'Prime Mover' (rumour has it this one was about 'Cornish Trev' going to the Kebab Shop). The rest was much of a muchness. Somehow they got a reprise ; well, it has to be the worst encore I have EVER seen !! An 'epic' neverending guitar solo ... then someone on stage uttered the immortal words "Now for the drum solo ..."
Incredibly (how much had she had to drink ?!?) Helen, one of the girls we met at The Meet-Up, thought this was all brilliant !! I thought I must have been hallucinating the whole thing ...
As ever the music between & after the bands was superb. Friday ranged from The Sisters to Bauhaus to Fields. Hey (now, hey now now), you can't argue with that ! At some stage there was a minutes silence in the hall for John Peel, and the evening was brought to a rousing climax with lots of jumping around to 'Teenage Kicks'. 'Those Teenage Dreams, So Hard To Beat !!"
All that 'dancing' had made Pete hungry, so he managed a large Pizza on the way home. We passed a passed out Goth lying on the path looking very much the worse for wear - either that or he was examining the pavement closely looking for traces of Neil's legendary Whitby Clotted Cream !
Was Smashedpete's age catching up with him ?? The Goth Incontinence Pads had sorted one problem, now his back was starting to hurt. Did those weighty boots have anything to do with it ...
Whatever ; he didn't make it for his Saturday fry-up .... (Cyber) Andy did, only to be told how awful he looked !! Where's the sympathy when you need it most ?
On a few occasions already we'd bumped into our old friend Robert from Manchester. I had visited that City in the summer of '04 to see the magnificent, the mighty, The Cure. They were SUPERB (etc. blah blah blah Robert Smith is GOD etc etc).
Well Robert had an amazing tale to tell of queueing up at Ticketmaster a couple of days before the gig to get his ticket .... only for Robert Smith to be standing behind him in the queue !!??!! Le God was picking up 40 or so tickets for his friends. What a moment ...
A nice Chicken Jalfrezi in The Resolution (nice meals at nice prices !!) and a couple of Stellas started the evening off in fine style. First up at The Spa for us were Glass, who sounded reasonable. A bit of chat & a few JD's then it was ASF (Alien Sex Fiend).
Nik Fiend looked like Smashedpete the morning after the nite before ! His wife (Nik's, not Pete's l Pete has no wife ..) was on Synthisizers and some very fat chap in a mask (obviously for his cred he didn't want to be recognised later !) was on guitar.
The Fiends were DESPERATE ; desperately in need of a good tune or two !?! On many, many occasions I've been told that I can't sing ... and I have enough insight to know that I can't sing ! BUT I could sing as well as Mr Fiend.
Some hardcore ASFers at the front lapped it up. I made a heroic effort to get my hands on Nik's giant banana, but failed dismally. Finding myself near to the front I stayed there for 'Ignore The Machine' which was at least recognisable.
E.S.T. ;Extra Singing Tuition required !!!!
No sooner had The Fiends gone back to their coffins than the classic opening bars of 'Sanctuary' were beating out. The floor was full, arms were in the air and we were treated to 75 minutes of Goth Heaven. 'Love Cats', 'Tower Of Strength', 'Temple Of Love' to name but a few, all ending magnificently with Bauhaus and 'Ziggy Stardust'.
It was all over. We's not only survived, but had a GREAT time. Whitby Goth weekend ; the people, the places, the alcohol, the music ........
IN GOTH WE TRUST ; WHITBY we will be back in April 2005.
(Cyber) Andy W.
'TWO WORLDS AND INBETWEEN'
Whitby Goth Weekend April '04.
Weekend of the year ? ; of the Decade more like .... Just where to start ?? Too many moments, too many pints, too many Jack Daniels ... but no fake tan to be seen anywhere !! The time just zoomed by through the sodium haze.
From having a CD given to us through the sunroof whilst stuck on the A1 (House Of Guns - 'Goth Trance'), to Pete 'The Desborough Goth' Wilford stating "It's back to reality now" as we arrived back in Northants on the Sunday evening.
If you've never been to this event then you just don't know what you're missing !?!
"I thought Goths didn't know how to have fun" as Dave Vanian said at the end of a riotous Damned set on the Friday eve. It was at about this time that Pete decided to join the good Captain Sensible - and some rather dubiously dressed Nuns - onstage for the encore of 'Smash It Up' (surely a song written about Desborough). Yes, you did read that correctly ; Pete was having it large and jumping around like a CRAZY MAN.
The bands were excellent - Zombina & The Skeletones and Earth Loop Recall supported The Damned - but this event is about the whole shebang !! Lots of Gothing during the day (apparently somewhere in Whitby there was Gothic Line Dancing going on - all hands in the air !), and then raving until 2am.
Our (dark) entry into the metropolis that is Whitby was accompanied by the sound of 'This Corrosion' blasting from the car stereo. Neil insisted on a quick trip around the town. It soon became obvious that plenty of Goths had landed already ; more black than in a Coal Mine ...
We docked at our Hotel ; Neil and Rachel popped off for a quick chat, and Pete & I found a nice pub. The locals were incredibly friendly, as was Neil. He regularly insisted that Rachel should accept his clotted cream ....
The John Smiths was going down a treat for Pete. On at least one occasion later in the eve he went to the bar - and by the time he reached me again had not only drunk his drink, but MINE AS WELL !! I managed to get into a heated debate with a couple of people over Mr E and the fact that 14 years was far too long to leave it between Albums (even The Stoned Roses didn't take that long !). Amazingly at 2.30am Pete & I managed to sniff out a kebab shop that was open. Just the job ....
All of the excitement had obviously taken it's toll on Pete (or was it seeing Neil in that Mesh top ??). 8.40am Saturday morning - and he misses the toothbrush with the toothpaste. Time for a nice full fried breakfast. Well ... Rachel, Neil & I all finished ours !!
A couple of 'swift ones' at lunchtime settled things down, then it was off to The Elsinor to try and spot that rarest of species ; no, not a ginger Goth, but The Urban Goth !! Mr Wilford got excited when he spotted Gail Porter standing outside, but this turned out to be Zelda Warrior Princess.
After a few Pints (or cokes in Graham 'D.V.' Rogersons case - no Double Vodkas for Graham today ...) we went to a lovely Restayrant for fish, chips & MUSHY PEAS - with a pot of tea !! Whilst enjoying this (although Pete had presumed it would be John Smiths in the pot) our Mobile went. It was Neil. He was outside of The Spa ... with Rachel and Wayne Hussey !! Apparently Neil was desperate to offload some of his clotted cream on Mr Huss - but Rachel persuaded him a photo would suffice !!
The 'Urban Goths' had to depart for home ; apparently U.G's never go out after dark. Once again we headed for the sanctuary of Whitby Pavilion ...
Libitina were first on - although people were already dancing in the hall at 7.45pm before they came on !! The Libs rocked like real Goths - all Sisters-ish riffs. They finished with a great cover of the Pulp classic 'Common People', changing the lyrics round to 'I want To Live Like Gothic People.' Inspired !!
The Dream Disciples are playing their last ever gig, and go down a storm.
The disco (DJ Scary Lady Sarah) is superb. Varying from Cyber to Uber to Trad & back again !! A bassed up version of 'Bedsitter' mixes with newer stuff, and when 'Rain' by The Cult kicks in suddenly it's 1985 (or 1969) all over again !
For The Mission it's a home banker ; Arsenal v Wolves !! They can't go wrong ... all the classics are aired. We even get a minute or so of 'Like A Hurricane' during 'Wasteland' (surely another tune about Desborough ...).
Mr H remains a star. This is the last nite of their tour. After thanking the crew etc. he simply says "I Just Love This Band !" They finish off with the mighty 'Tower Of Strength'. The Goths are still going strong, and there is much dancefloor activity until the lights eventually come on at around 2am.
Somehow most peoples nail varnish & eyeliner stayed intact for the duration ...
Sunday was again glorious weather. We took in the town and the Abbey (Pete refused to cut himself on a Gravestone, even though this would have made a great photo !). We all had a SUPERB time - including Robert, a guy we met at the Hotel who was over from Manchester for the weekend.
WHITBY - WE WILL BE BACK !! ... let's hope it's Suicide Commando playing in '05.
PS. We strongly recommend that if u go to this event you stay in a Cottage or Hotel - not In The Flat Field !!
It's sometimes easy to take things for granted. Your favourite shirt or pair of boots. They are always there ready to put on. A bit like The Cure really ; they've been around for so long you can forget just how good they are.
How many times has Robert Smith said "This will be our last Album" ; thankfully he then does a tour, then gets on with the next Album ... He continues to come up with great stuff time after time. On of my most treasured records is the signed copy of 'Disintegration' I have tucked away upstairs ...
Their 2004 offering, called simply 'The Cure' is undoubtedly a classic. "If you don't like this record then you don't like The Cure" as Mr Smith said in an interview. A true English eccentric, Fat Bob looks much the same now as 15 years ago. Hair all over the place with style and dressed in black - even if he has put on a few more pounds as time has gone by !
At last The Cure are getting the artistic recognition that they deserve. A whole generation of new bands such as The Rapture are acknowledging & saluting them. As with all of the really great bands, The Cure work on many levels. They're like life ; we all get down at times ... what better soundtrack than 'Pornography' ? Feeling bright and breezy ; 'Love Cats' or 'Friday I'm In Love' are hard to beat !
I saw The Cure in the summer of '04 headlining Move Festival in Manchester. They were superb. In many ways it wasn't a 'stadium' set they played - not just a run through of greatest hits. It was a set for hardcore Cure fans. Tracks from all eras were played. Standouts for me were 'A Hundred Years', 'Inbetween Days' & 'Boys Don't Cry'.
The Cure won't be around forever, but let's hope it's a while yet before Bob settles into his Retirement Home !!Cyber A.W.
THE SISTERS OF MERCY + FLESH FOR LULU.
Camden Electric Ballroom.
24 May '84.
The Sisters are back !
After a break from the scene they're as powerful as ever - if not more so. Their first London gig for over 6 months drew a healthy crowd. Lots of black velvet and leather. Expectation was high ... and we weren't let down.
Flesh For Lulu are a four piece with a completely over the top guitarist. He is like a cross between Keith Richards, Marc Almond and Joey Ramone !?! Most of his time is spent bounding around the stage, flicking cigarettes into the crowd, trying to keep his hair out of his eyes and generally preening himself ! They played a fairly long set. Despite a few sound problems Lulu were impressive - especially on a couple where they slowed the pace down. Definately a group to listen out for in the future.
And so the long wait began ...
At approx. 11pm The Sisters at last emerged through the sodium haze and launched into a ferocious racket. The dancefloor was immediately abuzz with flailing arms !! The sound was excellent, as was the light show. Resplendent in black, the beat was totally relentless.
A mixture of old and new material was played. A frenzy was reached with 'Floorshow' and 'Alice'. Smoke filled the stage, Eldritch cutting a shadowy figure in the gloom. They played for around an hour, then did 2 encores. Stunning stuff indeed.
Watch out world, The Sisters are back on form ....
SMOKE AND MIRRORS.
18 April '03.
Another year ... another tour. 13 years since the last new Album, almost 10 years since the last Single. Yet HE can still pack a fair sized London venue two nights running.
As much smoke (very purple) as you could wish for. Eldritch in black T-Shirt and leather jacket ; by the end he was wearing a 'People's Republic Of West Yorkshire' shirt ! 'Temple Of Love' opens proceedings and still - as Tony James once said - "rocks like a motherfucker."
Unreleased stuff accounts for around a third of the set ; at least over the years we've come to know the songs. 'Will I Dream ?' was in there, along with new song 'Slept' ("Turn me on, turn me in - I have slept with all the girls in Berlin.").
'Alice' was superb as was 'Lucretia'. 'Flood 1' desperately beautiful, and 'Giving Ground' transformed into a throbbing industrial stormer. Eldritch appears to be enjoying himself. Encores follow - 'Top Nite Out' indeed ! The last song of the night is that old rock classic 'Vision Thing'.
A few blown kisses, a low bow - and Von is gone into the murky blackness. All in all a fine performance. The band have clearly benefited from being together for 4 years (a lifetime in terms of The Sisters) ; now when is that new Album being released ......
Setlist. Temple Of Love. Crash And Burn. Ribbons. When You Don't See Me. Summer. Alice. Flood 1. We Are The Same Suzanne. Dominion/Mother Russia. Will I Dream ? Anaconda. Slept. Giving Ground. First And Last And Always. Romeo Down. Flood 2. I Was Wrong. Neverland. Lucretia. Top Nite Out. Vision Thing.
"THE SISTERS - THE START OF IT ALL..."
I had moved to Leeds to learn Chinese and I was living above the chemist
with Claire and Spiggy the cat. One day I dared to set up the drum kit which
someone had stored in the cellar.
I still can't play the drums but at least I was the only drummer in town who
could be relied upon to avoid anything complicated.
Gary Marx and I knew each other from the F Club. He was a big fan of The
Fall, I was a big fan of Pere Ubu, and we both loved The Stooges.
Gary had no money and no equipment, but wanted to hear himself on the
radio. We pressed a few thousand copies, and sold a few. Even at the time it
was hard to get hold of - and even harder to listen to. That should have been
the end of it, but ...
We hooked up with Craig Adams, probably because he too lived over the
chemists. He was a big fan of Hawkwind and Motorhead, and he had this
bass sound that suddenly defined The Sisters - along with the drum machine
that we brought because we all loved Suicide.
Everybody loved Suicide. The drum machine became Doktor Avalanche. Gary
became a guitar player and I became the singer almost by default.
I think we spent the next few years in the back of a van. When it wasn't
parked above the chemist we were making the loudest noise possible in some
of england's most disgusting clubs. we still had no money and no equipment
- almost everything went on making the next gig louder than the last.
I like to think that it was the songs that made this band. I know it wasn't !
We used a lot of smoke, very few lights, stepped right back and just made a
space where you could lose yourself (but more probably find yourself) in a tide
of colour and noise.
It sounds simple, but no-one that wanted to be a rock n roll star could have
done it. Apart from anything else, it took a long time and burned more than a
few people out.
The records were never supposed to reflect that experience - it's a different
medium and one we're still learning. Maybe some of it comes through.
Anyway, in those first 4 years, when we had the money (and often when we
didn't) we would drop in on Kenny Giles in Bridlington. He had an eight track
and he was the only person who would help us make records the way we
wanted. Thanks ken.
They may not sound like anybody else's, they may not even sound like
records - but we loved them !
For what it's worth.
'THE CORPORATE WARS - NO GIVING GROUND'.
Events following The Sisters gig at The Royal Albert Hall on June 18 1985 have passed into folklore....
It seems that Wayne Hussey joined Eldritch in Hamburg, where the singerhad set up home to recuperate from his breakdown and keep himself from temptation. The pair began writing songs for the next Sisters LP. Hussey says that Eldritch rejected all of his ideas and had turned into some sort of unreasonable megalomaniac (surely not ...).
Matters came to a head during rehearsals when Eldritch apparently asked the band to play something fancy that Craig Adams took exception to. He walked out and Eldritch is reported to have exclaimed "Ha! We've got rid of the driftwood !" This annoyed Hussey and a couple of days later he too walked out, leaving Eldritch alone with the ever faithful Doktor. "He was listening to things like Fleetwood Mac and Foreigner and there was us listening to Motorhead" says Hussey of their musical differences. Hussey and Adams quickly recruited Mick Brown and Simon Hinkler and, after trying to play as The Sisters Of Mercy and realising that there could be a legal problem, changed their name to The Sisterhood.
They played a 'secret' gig at Alice In Wonderland in January '86 and recorded a BBC session. Within 3 weeks they were on tour, supporting The Cult around Europe, playing a set comprising of the songs that Hussey had written for the sisters' LP. They hadn't, however, figured on Eldritch's acrimony !
He was bitter and angry because he claimed that The Sisterhood was already the name of The Sisters Of Mercy's semi-official fan club - and he set about stopping Hussey in his tracks.
He issued many statements, one of which read "It saddens us that former associates should feel compelled to seek refuge behind the very identity for which they are no longer prepared to accept responsibility and from which they claim to have distanced themselves. Out respect for what ex-group members are capable of achieving in their own right in the future demands that we act to stop this pitiful masquerade."
He went about it simply by releasing his own record as The Sisterhood. 'Giving Ground' comprised of 'The musical bile of Andrew Eldritch and the colossal talents of James Ray And The Performance'. On February 27 1986, onstage at the Electric Ballroom, Hussey was forced to admit defeat. He announced that "Thanks to Andrew Eldritch, we are no longer called The Sisterhood" - whereupon a backdrop lit up with the band's new name ; The Mission.
Eldritch replied "It is apparent that Wayne and Craig have concluded that bands issue records, not disclaimers and appear in concert halls, not court rooms. Their logic is unassailable. We assume that their choice of name is entirely unconnected with the forthcoming Andrew Eldritch album which for some months has had the working title 'Left On Mission And Revenge'."
Legally there were still wrangles over past Sisters material, the rights to which Eldritch eventually won. Eldritch rubbed salt into the wounds by releasing a 6 track Sisterhood LP, 'The Gift' - a brutal, psychopathic bitter work featuring Suicide's Alan Vega, the ex-Motorhead drummer Lucas Fox and Patricia Morrison (lately of The Gun Club). The first words on the record were 'Two Five Zero Zero Zero', apparently the ammount of money that Eldritch made out of The Mission trying to be The Sisterhood !
Is this really what happened ?? If you know different - or would like to express an opinion, then let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SISTERS OF MERCY.
Rock City, Nottingham.
2nd September '00.
On The Wire/Teachers/On The Wire.
Crash And Burn.
Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen.
Will I Dream ?
We Are The Same, Suzanne.
War On Drugs.
Temple Of Love.
THE SISTERS OF MERCY.
23 June '01.
The chance to see The Sisters in Germany !
Who could resist ?!?
At around 8.20 local time Andy & the boys
and it was straight into
'Vision Thing'. 'Ribbons' (Marx and Engels, God and Angels) soon
followed and Eldritch's voice was sounding in fine fettle.
He appeared to be in good mood (at one stage
saying "You are
nice" to the
audience). Even the T-Shirt was colourful - not goth, or wot !!
The set continued apace ... 'Summer' was blinding,
Ground' as dark as
ever and 'War On Drugs' was like a pneumatic drill in your head
. Things were brought to a suitable climax with the one and only 'This
Corrosion' ; Hey Now, Hey Now Now ...
Encores followed, with 'Something Fast' and a
showcasing Adam Pearson and Chris Sheehan to the full.
2 'new' cover versions ('Sugar Baby Love' and The Ramones 'I Wanna Be
Sedated') rounded things off superbly.
The Sisters are back once again - surely a new album MUST follow soon !
SONGS PLAYED INCLUDED ;
Vision Thing, Ribbons, Crash and Burn,
Amphetamine Logic, Will I Dream, On The Wire/Teachers/On the Wire,
Summer, Flood 1, Anaconda, Dominion, We Are The Same Suzanne, Giving Ground, War On Drugs, Romeo Down, Flood 2, This Corrosion,
Something Fast, Temple Of Love, Snub Nose, Sugar Baby Love, I
Wanna Be Sedated.
Andy 'Von' Webster.
4 December '00.
AWESOME !! ... well, that's that then ...
"They don't write songs like that anymore" Wayne
Northampton his most used phrase was "Do you want another oldie
Was he, however, refering to the tunes or the
After all these years it's great to be able to report that The Mission remain
(forever) 'up there' as one of the great live bands.
I first saw them a mind-crunching 14+ years ago
(to be exact
it was on the
24th November '86 at the Civic Centre, Aylesbury with the wonderous
Rose Of Avalanche supporting - and have seen them 7 times since).
This was as good as ever, if not better ! Nearly
played was a
highlight - standouts had to be 'Butterfly On A Wheel', 'Beyond The
Pale', 'Severina' and 'Tower Of Strength'.
The healthy sized crowd (including a fair number
30's !!) loved it. Mr
Hussey is still pretty sprightly, and wore a fetching velvet shirt. This
was especially appreciated by the female members of the audience.
The encores were almost a set in themselves -
'Wasteland' was followed by 'Serpent's Kiss' and 'Over The Hills And Far
Away'. A storming 'Blood Brother' rattled along, and you'd think that was
probably it ... but no !!
Next up was a Depeche Mode (??) cover, only to
lead into the
of the Neil Young classic 'Like A Hurricane' (always my favourite Mission
cover) ... Goth Heaven !! Surely it must be all over, only for a belting version of The Stooges '1969' to
top things off.
The Mission are well and truly back (were they
ever away ??).
them next time round ...
This review has been sent to us from America (? author & ? date of gig !).
THE SISTERS OF MERCY,
Electric Factory, Philadelphia.
I've seen Andrew Eldritch as a blond wearing a Motorhead T-shirt and
covering Pink Floyd.
I can die now !
The 3600 capacity venue was sold out for The Sisters first show in the U.S.
Appartenly Eldritch had prevented 2 of the support bands from playing as they
looked "too goth" and claimed that from now on he wants to be referred to as
an "Industrial Alternative" act.
The Sisters had a long intro before launching into 'Vision Thing'. With his hair,
round and purple shades and jacket, Andrew appeared very reminiscent of
His voice was extremely gravely as he sang "25 whores in the room next
door". Then he cleared his throat !
The thrill hit. When hearing that all-too familiar voice merged with seeing this
man on stage, the rush came.
For many of us, this was the holy grail of gigs - and we knew it.
The lights were stunning. A wall of dozens of individual sweeping lights
towered behind the band, programmed specifically for each song. "One
thousand points of light" Andrew sang, and thin white beams flashed around
wildly. "One blinding flash of sense" and bright white light lit up the whole
'Ribbons' was next, and the lights were red, like flowers on a razor wire. The
audience consisted of row after row of bodies swathed in black, white faces
bathed in blood red light !
The voice was the voice of Andrew Eldritch - the impossibly deep bass with a
hint of tears that has inspired so many imitators. He emoted dramatically and
passionately, crouching about the stage at times. He still sang about black
winds calling his name no more. Smoke was everywhere.
Some new songs were performed - but they could have appeared on the
'Vision Thing' album. Any desire to be known as 'Industrial Alternative' has
clearly not changed the music.
"We are The Sisters Of Mercy" he said, "and we are a rock and roll band."
Whatever he wants to call himself, we are still his children. He can hate us if
he wants, but he shares our blood !
The set included 'Temple Of Love', 'The Giving Ground', 'Under The Gun',
'Flood', 'Detonation Boulevard', and 'Alice'.
There were 2 encores - 'Comfortably Numb' seguing into 'Some Kind Of
Stranger' then 'Something Fast' and ending with 'This Corrosion'.
We had come all the way from Detroit - some from even further.
It's hard to keep from loving the man who raised you, even when you've been
THE SISTERS OF MERCY Brixton Academy, 20.12.93.
The Sisters took to the stage to the perfect choice of opener ; a bombastic, smouldering Comfortably Numb/Some Kind Of Stranger - with Eldritch immediately finding his full gravel throated magnificence. Thankfully he wasn't wearing his Cowardesque yellow dressing gown !!
The pension book wrinklies in the crowd (or those with 'Some Girls Wander'...) were thrilled to hear Body Electric, Alice, Burn, Temple Of Love and Anaconda - the latter with a new improved chorus.
Other songs similarily updated in a pitifully doomed attempt to disguise the lack of new material from Europe's most prolific songwriter were Train and Detonation Boulevard (strange bedfellows indeed for a new segue). There was also a radical reworking of one of The Sisters finest moments, On The Wire. Eldritch intoned the Some Girls... section of Leonard Cohen's Teachers for the first time on stage in 12 years.
The pace of the set, and judicious selection from the band's slowly burgeoning oeuvre continued with crowd pleasers such as Flood II, This Corrosion and More. By the time things came to an end with a ferocious Vision Thing even hardened cynics would have to concede that they'd witnessed an Artist at the peak of his form.
There was even a brace of new songs - Under The Gun (better live than the Single) and another future classic, Come Together.
At £15 for one and a half hours it was an absolute bargain !!
'UTTERLY BASTARD GROOVY.'
The Sisters Of Mercy, N.E.C. Birmingham. 27.6.92.
It's half past seven on a boring night in Birmingham - and the church is open. All day the town has played host to the black clad hordes. Most of them half asleep in Cathedral Park, watching a pub band murder old Doors classics. In black leather, in the boiling sunshine ! Some people will do anything for their heroes ...
Inside a massive aircraft hanger the lights go down. Somewhere in the stalls high above me a distant voice shouts "ELDRITCH IS GOD." The air becomes charged. Wherever they went to, the goths reappear. Out of the woodwork, all across Europe - they have come to see one Man. All they can hear is the massive, earth-swallowing Doktor Avalanche. All we can see is flashing, coloured smoke with lasers piercing the NEC's black hole of an arena. Everyone stands ; shocked and immobile.
"Hello, Is Anybody In There ?" the shadow booms like the voice from hell. Half of the people are like "Oh my god, it's HIM." The others are saying "What the hell is this ?!?" As entrances go, it's almost perfect ! The song is 'Comfortably Numb' and it becomes transformed into a crystal clear injection of common sense.
Eldritch - clad in a long, dark overcoat - (like some ancient God transformed from an age of chivalry) is a king amongst his disciples. The absurd self-pity of the song makes sense in The Sisters World. Halfway through, and Tim Brechino becomes visible through the smoke ; clad in a glittersuit like Marc Bolan and shamelessly sporting a Sisters shirt underneath. Glamour and squalor look beautiful together. One without the other is meaningless !
Suddenly the song swithes into 'Some Kind Of Stranger'. Watching Eldritch scream like a man possessed, I know that the old (black) magic is back. That unearthly wail, not a person but of some primal hurt animal, emerges from nowhere. The moment Doktor Avalanche crashes into 'First And Last And Always' everyone enters the familiar. Eldy is in his element, a commandant of the dispossessed.
By 'Ribbons' someone has already fainted. 'Alice' follows and even though it's only 16 drumbeats as an intro, it sounds collossal. Like the calm in the eye of the storm, you know something big is about to happen. Somewhere in the middle of 'Logic' the primal scream emerges again and somehow he conveys that he's been closer to dark things than most people care to imagine. There's only one thing left between sanity and insanity - and it sounds like it's been taken away !
Encores are only a matter of time ; a solo version of 'Stop Dragging My Heart Around' sounds like Elvis on Hells Cabaret Circuit. As the rest of the band reappear, Mr E narrates ;'Like The Driven Snow'. From nowhere the muscular strains of 'More' fill the air, bringing the nights biggest cheer. A masterstroke ! It sounds like the only song that's ever been a song, like a song alone forever in a void.
When Eldo returns, he recites 'Fix' like God preaching the Ten Commandments - with a whisper more powerful than a scream. 'Visio Thing' sounds like the moment of truth, when everything is revealed. As he crouches down near to the crowd, their arms reach out to him like people who know damn well they can never touch the moon- but you might as well try !
For the 3rd and final encore, the strains of '1959' dissolve into the end of the world sound that is '1969'. The last song ever sung, the soundtrack to the coming Armageddon. Endless nights, meaningless lives, striving desperately to fill the emptiness of the heart with Something. Anything. Over the PA the soundtrack to 'Apoclypse Now' plays. A softly spoken man speaks over the sound of war and madness. Explosions. Helicopters. "Ecery time I wake up the walls move a little closer." Eldritch has left the building.
The Gentle Anarchist.
'GET PERSONAL WITH PATRICK'
Review – Amphi Festival 2012 – Koln, Germany
For the third time in as many years I found myself Koln-bound for another Amphi festival weekend, this time having an extra night in the city to sample the bars on the Thursday, which were excellent. After the requisite sightseeing and devouring of large steaks on the Friday it was time for the first official part of my Amphi weekend; the unofficial warmup party! Held at the club Essigfabrik within the city, it promised a night of live electro music, followed by dancing into the early hours to hit after dancefloor hit from the DJs, and once again the evening delivered. After gathering on the cathedral steps to meet everybody, as is now an informal tradition, arrival at the club found Agonoize on stage to a packed house, and their wave after relentless wave of harsh electro industrial had the whole audience moving and screaming for more during the entirety of their set. The DJs afterwards were up to a great standard, keeping the floor filled with a steady stream of current and classic EBM and electro dance music. My only criticisms of the night remain the same as they have been in previous years; the bar is stupidly expensive, and allowing glasses and glass bottles inside such a packed venue, with a stone tiled dancefloor no less, is just asking for trouble, as I’m sure the unfortunate person being carried past me with his hands dripping blood could have told anybody. It’s all very good fun until somebody gets hurt!
Waking up the next morning fully refreshed and revitalised, as only a night out dancing until way past my bedtime can make me, it was time to hit the first day of the festival. After arriving at the main festival site, and not too much of a long queue to get in, the first band to see was Eisenfunk on the indoor stage. Always a pleasure to watch because they are just so much fun, these guys were bursting with their usual reckless energy and gay abandon, and very easily had the whole venue jumping to their infectious and sometimes retro computer game styled dancefloor hits, finishing off with their coup d’etait hit, Pong. Straight after Eisenfunk came Tyske Ludder, delivering some altogether harder and darker beats, and giving a very sound and fully competent performance to a much appreciative crowd. X-Rx were received with great enthusiasm by the massive crowd gathered in the Staatenhaus, with numerous mini dancefloors forming full of people frantically throwing their best shapes to the sounds of these two EBM pixies. They may be “dark Jedward”, but they do deliver the goods for folk wanting a bit of a boogie.
Some welcome relief from harder sounding dance came after this opening onslaught, in the form of synthpop sensations seabound, who captivated the crowd with their catchy and heartfelt melodies and vocals, including some tracks not so frequently found on their live sets. This was followed after in a very similar vein by stalwarts Assemblage 23, who electrified the atmosphere and kept the whole audience very energised and mobile. After a short break for food I came back to catch Haujobb, and see Daniel Myer prove once again why he is considered one of the best in the business, with his powerful beats and driving vocals he really made an impression and delivered a memorable set.
Outside at the main stage there came a chance to catch some of this stages headliners for the day, the Sisters of Mercy. Their usual on stage pea souper of smoke machines was thwarted on this occasion by strong winds, rendering the rare sight of Andrew Eldritch clearly visible, shock horror! While the Sister’s set was very competent and delivered with their usual panache, I personally wasn’t gripped by it. The choice of songs on this outing I don’t think delivered as much bang per buck as has pervious sets of theirs. Despite this personal preference of mine, they did play to a massive and clearly very appreciative crowd. For me it was inside the Staatenhaus for what would be my headliner of the night, Apoptygma Berzerk. From opening with the hauntingly beautiful “Love never dies” to closing with the old school track “Bitch”, these guys gave a masterclass in electro synthpop, and delivered a real tour de force of a set. The entire packed out venue danced and sang along to dear favourites such as “Non Stop Violence”, “Eclipse”, “Starsign”, “Unicorn” and “Until the end of the world”, and it turned into one of those memorable shows that you wish had gone on for much longer. Definitely a fantastic performance by a worthy headliner, and a well chosen replacement to Front 242, who cancelled their appearance. After this it was time for a bit of a dance at the theatre after party, and as always the DJs were delivering plenty of floor fillers to dance to, and it was nice to see the bar operating normally again for serving beer, although the venue would definitely benefit from having a few more pumps and staff on hand to ease the sometimes daunting bar queues.
The last day of the festival started off with Solar Fake on the main stage, delivering a solid performance of catchy synthpop. These were followed by the sensational Aesthetic Perfection, who really ignited the crowds fervour, and seemed to feed off it in return, to give a slick and refined, yet also a passionate and heartfelt set, mixing some tracks from their new album with tried and tested favourites such as “Spit it out” and “The Great Depression”. Next up were fan favourites the Cruxshadows, playing to a rather large crowd on the main outdoor stage. Personally I felt their set was really disappointing compared to previous ones. Some requisite elements were there, such as rogue climbing the nearest available scaffolding/lighting rig, however there didn’t seem to be the usual energy in the performance or the crowd. The set that was delivered seemed to be mainly songs from their forthcoming album, with very few of the usual crowd pleasers kept in. With none of the songs really standing out much it seems that the risky tactic of playing a set of mostly new songs did not pay off in this instance, and they proved something of a let down. Back inside the indoor stage saw Conjure One take to the stage, replacing Front Line Assembly, who unfortunately had to drop out of the festival due to album commitments. With Bill Leeb being replaced by his former Delerium bandmate Rhys Fulber, part of the appeal was that it was technically like seeing Delerium in fragments, having managed to catch Front Line Assembly at Amphi in 2010.
Conjure One proved a worthy replacement, capturing the crowds attention with mesmerising soundscapes and vocals, with a selection of Conjure One tracks, and some vintage Front Line Assembly. The real icing on the cake came when they finished the set with the classic Delerium track “Silence”. Although Sarah Mclacken was not brought out to sing it, the female vocalist who did come on to perform it did so admirably, and the performance stands out to me as one of the best and most memorable festival moments I have been privileged to experience. Combichrist played one of the final dates of their sensational Evolution tour with a storming set in a crammed to capacity Staatenhaus, with all the usual on stage carnage and chaos backed by insane percussion and ripping beats that people have come to expect from Any LaPleuga et al. Finally, headlining the Staatenhaus, it was time for the last live act of Amphi 2012, the might Project Pitchfork! From opening up with “Existence v4.1” they delivered a relentless storm of classic fan favourites, interspersed with some great sounding new material from their new album. Their addition of two live drummers really added to the raw and real feeling of the experience, and “Timekiller” is always an amazing track to see performed live, and I think Project Pitchfork once again showed that they are the original and the best. Truly a worthy headlining act and a phenomenal way to finish off what had been a fun filled and memorable festival. All that was left to do at this stage was to dance the night away in the theatre to the final quota of top notch DJs, who once again delivered some excellent tunes, and were rounded off by Eskil from Covenant playing some rather avante garde electro choices, certainly a top choice for an end of the night DJ, very bold and daring.
I think that Amphi Festival is going from strength to strength and will very soon be selling out regularly simply as a matter of course. I thoroughly enjoyed this years festival and will most definitely be back for more next year, and I whole heartedly recommend it to anybody who wants to experience a top rate lineup of bands and DJs, as well as a great atmosphere at a venue with good clean facilities, great food and all round an amazing crowd of people to share the experience with.
Album review – Second Sun – Der Klinke
Second sun is the second album from Belgian Darkwave act Der Klinke, and continues a very proud tradition of excellent dark music coming from Belgium. The album is packed with relentless keyboard lines, driving guitar riffs and growling, guttural vocals, singing around a range of themes covering sometimes issues surrounding mental breakdowns, and sometimes more traditional “literally dark” motifs, namely shunning the sun and seeking the shadows. Despite the subject matter sometimes being a little stereotypical, the excellent music and production values mean that it works well, and never becomes trite or ridiculous. The broad depth of talent in the band is showcased admirably throughout the album, with fast paced aggressive songs standing shoulder to shoulder with slower, more guitar instrumental driven ones, and each track standing out perfectly well by itself; there are no weak “filler” tracks at all on this album. Sometimes this band can sound a bit like a cross between Laibach and Joy Division/Bauhaus, and I look forward to hearing more releases from them.
Album Review – Shiv R – Hold my Hand
Hold my hand is the first full length release from Australian dark electro/industrial act Shiv-R, and it is a powerful and hard hitting offering indeed. The bio on the bands website states that they are all about impact, and this is aptly demonstrated by Hold My Hand. From start to finish each track delivers hard and fast beats, dripping with underlying menace, supporting the brilliantly tortured vocals of Peter Crane, singing lyrics that are very suitably dark, disturbing and at times brilliantly deranged. The whole experience is tied together with top notch production values, making the album feel very clean and precise in its delivery, despite the whole thing oozing dark and threatening themes, like an almost palpable audio ichor. Also noticeable is the creative use of samples and soundbytes, staying well away from the military/full metal jacket theme, it makes for a very refreshing change, considering the genre, and really helps to build the mood. All in all, this album is a remarkable debut from a very creative and talented duo and it will be very interesting to listen to whatever they come up with next.
Album review – Uncovered – Unwoman
Uncovered is a fan funded release of cover versions by Unwoman (Erica Mulkey, also of Rasputina fame). Sometimes covers albums can be very hit or miss, as is often the case with cover versions. In this case, with each track being selected for having significance to Erica from growing up, the album is a real treat, with some fantastic reinterpretations of very powerful and moving songs, as well as some choices that are downright fun. The album is indeed a mixed bag, but always hits the mark it intends to, which is a resounding testament to the versatility and depth of range of this artist, especially considering the variety of songs covered on this album. From fun, poppy tracks such as Careless Whisper by Wham and She Bop by Cyndi Lauper, to darker tracks from Nine Inch Nails and Nick Cave, and a breathtakingly beautiful take on Ceremony by Joy Divison, this album covers a broad gamut of influential music, and with cello and piano, is wonderfully reinterpreted and delivered by Unwoman.
Uncovered is available physically and digitally from Unwoman’s bandcamp page - http://unwoman.bandcamp.com/album/uncovered-volume-1
Review Amphi festival 2011 – Koln, Germany – Patrick Whittell
Stepping out of Koln hauptbahnhoff with a bag full of PVC and crin falls and a hankering to hit the vodka, it can only mean it’s time for Amphi festival once again! After a reasonable flight and train journey to reach Koln and checking into the hotel with my friend it was time to grab my press pass from the venue, get ready and then indulge in the traditional drinks on the cathedral steps before heading to Essigfabrik for the warm up party! In addition to the usual two rooms of electro flavoured music always on offer at the warm up party, this year also was the 5th anniversary of the party and so was marked by having a few bands on across the two rooms, the headliners being Stahlnebel vs Black Selket and Nachtmahr. We arrived just as Nachtmahr were well underway. They are definitely a band that has divided opinion with alarming polarity, with their pseudo fascist attire, martial beats and war related visuals. On the one hand it is supposedly done with the tongue in cheek, and it can’t be denied that they have produced numerous dancefloor fillers, on the other hand, how far can you go before the tongue is no longer in cheek, and when does a uniform start to mean something more sinister? For my part I found the performance musically entertaining, even if I am no great fan of the aesthetic. When I find myself overwhelmed by musical military dictatoresque shenanigans, I just remember there’s a new Chandeen album coming out soon, and then I feel happy again.
The rest of the night, after the bands finished, was spent dancing away to a plethora of club hits. The atmosphere at the club was excellent, very packed but a very friendly crowd, all clearly there to have a great time. The bar was dreadful, whilst the service was fairly quick the prices were ridiculous, having scrapped the stamp card system of the year before in favour of simply paying through the nose at the bar, one round was enough to justify all the pre drinks! Also the amount of glass bottles dispensed was a worrying sign, as it made the dancefloor a bit hazardous on account of the broken glass littering it. Afterwards it was back to the hotel for some much needed sleep before the festival proper began on the Saturday.
First up was Mind.In.A.Box in the indoor venue. After a few minor technical hitches at the start of the set this band delivered infectious electronic fuelled grooves and very quickly won the audience, if any weren’t already behind them. Playing to an already near capacity venue they definitely set the bar at a good height for the rest of the bands over the weekend. After a few cocktails at the beach bar it was time to see Frozen Plasma. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of the set delivered by these masters of synthpop, who played with extremely polished flair, breaking away from the normal structures of their songs with a little bit of freestyle playing to make the performance a little different from the album versions and also to prove they were playing live, all in all they delivered a fantastic
Next up Grendel delivered harsh electro in droves to a baying audience. Joined at one point by Manchester’s very own Addz from the Ladder/Deviant UK on guitar for the song One Eight Zero, Grendel delivered a solid performance. One notable point was during the instrumental sections of Zombie Nation when the singer decided to sing some of the words to Nitzer Ebb’s Let Your Body Learn. This was an interesting break from the norm, although mostly it got me more excited about seeing the real Nitzer Ebb the next day! Next came a breathtaking performance from Leather Strip, one which really seemed to stun and enthral the crowd. Powerful beats and vocals delivered with palpable passion and enthusiasm really made this one of the standout performances of the festival, and a good reason to recommend people try and catch Leather Strip live if they can. Last band of the evening for me was Suicide Commando, giving a great show with his dark electronic beats and harsh distorted vocals. Blasting out such hits as Severed Head, God Is In The Rain, Die Motherfucker Die and Bind Torture Kill, frontman Johan was clearly very happy to be at Amphi, and the crowd emphatically got behind him from the get go, crying out for more at the end and really showing their appreciation when an encore, See You In Hell, was delivered.
After a day of fantastic performances it was time to enjoy some more of the excellent cocktails at the beach bar before heading into the after party. Whilst getting a drink at the bar I ran into and got chatting with members of electronic outfits Tyske Ludder and Feindflug. The former will be playing next year’s Amphi, whilst the latter were on the bill for the next day. Over a few drinks we discussed Skinny Puppy gigs and the possibility of a show in Manchester, exciting times!
For some reason the queues at the theatre venue, where the after party is held, were not being let in. After having to argue my way in despite having a VIP pass I expected the venue to be at capacity, however this was not the case, whilst there was a decent number inside the venue was nowhere near capacity. I have no idea why there was such a problem for people to get in that night, although there were major problems at the bar all weekend, with the pumps being either totally out of action or producing beer with way too much head. This meant that the wait to get a beer was significantly increased, so I do hope that in future years the venue manages to sort this out. Upon entry to the theatre I was expecting to catch Ronan Harris from VNV Nation DJing, but this was not to be. He had evidently not turned up and so it was his co DJ Jeanny playing a plethora of floorfillers that, to be honest, was doing nothing for the crowd, the majority of people were just standing, even on the dancefloor.
After Jeanny finished her set it was time for Manchester’s own pride and joy, AD3K, of the legendary Analoguetrash, Megabyte and Clueless clubnights, to take to the stage for his very own Amphi DJ set! After being announced by the evenings host Ady wasted no time unleashing his very own brand of alt electro to the waiting crowd. The entire crowd seemed to get straight behind this set and were all very soon dancing away energetically, and some of the backstage crew started to dance on stage too! The set proved to be fun and to not take itself too seriously, whilst it flaunted the strictures of genres by flirting with techno and hard dance, as well as remixes of more firmly rooted songs. I think the set was a breath of fresh air and it was very refreshing to enjoy such variety at Amphi, variety being something which I believe makes music festivals such as this one such amazing events to participate in. The positive effect on the crowd was very apparent and it proved to be a very enjoyable set indeed, and a very deservedly triumphant debut for AD3K on the big stage, it would be excellent to see more of him on grander stages such as the festival ones on future years, as he clearly proved his capability in spades that night.
The rest of the DJs that night followed on in good style and kept the dancefloor goin very well, however, the reasons for the venue not having as many in it that night must have persisted, as the dancefloor became very sparse a lot earlier than it would normally be expected to at Amphi, however all in all it was a very fun day of great bands, followed by dancing to some great tunes, so it was back to the hotel for me, looking forward to the last day of Amphi!
The first band for me on the Sunday was Funkhausgruppe, the new group that included some members of Welle:Erdball. Having enjoyed an excellent show from Welle:Erdball at Amphi the previous year I was very much looking forward to Funkhausgruppe, and they did not disappoint! A similar quirky electronic to Welle:Erdball was in evidence, as well as polished musical excellence from all the numerous group members, and a great sense of fun that pervaded both the band and the crowd as bubble guns were fired liberally and glitter cannons went off before the end, it was a great audience to be a part of and I would definitely love to catch this group again sometime! Next up were Clan of Xymox in the indoor venue. This veteran Belgian gothic outfit had a packed venue on tenterhooks awaiting their arrival and performance, and from the moment they took to the stage they captivated everybody present with their moody and impassioned set, garnering a well deserved ovation from the crowd. I particularly liked the different instrumentation employed by the frontman, which was sometimes by its very nature a bit quiet, although the crowd itself quieted to enjoy it. This provided a nice break from the more electronic focused bands with their banks of synths and backing tracks, and really showcased the musical versatility of this band.
Next up was the electronic ambient brilliance of In the Nursery, a band I hadn’t seen for years but who still enthralled me just as much when they took to the stage as they had back then, with their haunting vocals, searing electronic soundscapes and martial drums. This quickly became one of the standout performances of the festival for me, and a personal favourite. After this I decided to join the queue to get Nitzer Ebb’s autographs. I think this is an excellent feature for a festival, giving everybody the chance to briefly meet their favourite acts. My photo with Nitzer Ebb was terrible though, I was looking off somewhere else for some reason. I’d probably spotted a really nice bottom or something.For the final band of Amphi 2011 it was Covenant in the indoor venue! After a performance dogged by technical difficulties at Resitanz in April and reports of drunken, lacklustre shows prior to that, this trio swiftly brought a commanding performance to the stage and totally shattered any past bad shows with an amazing, intense barrage of their greatest hits and new songs from their latest album. The atmosphere in the rammed to capacity venue was electric, with hot, sweaty but very happy people dancing and having a great time, and Eskil and co clearly feeding off that energy and channelling it back into their performance. With an ecstatic encore that included Call The Ships To Port, Tears In Rain and Dead Stars, this was a show I didn’t want to finish, but finish it had to, bringing the bands portion of Amphi to an amazing climax.
The next band for me was Agonoize, who delivered a very enjoyable and danceable performance of harsh electronic, with a very larger than life stage presence to keep the crowd dodging the various liquids he launched at them! After tearing myself away from cocktails on the beach, it was time to see the mighty Nitzer Ebb! There are some performances you get an inkling will be amazing and they exceed even those expectations, and this was definitely one of them! Douglas and co thrilled and amazed a massive crowd at the outdoor stage with a varied collection of their classics such as Let Your Body Learn, Getting Closer, Shame, Lightning Man and Godhead, as well as many tracks off their excellent latest album Industrial Complex, including Once You Say and Hit You Back. For the encore they were joined by the frontman of Die Krupps for a rip roaring performance of their duet track, The Machineries Of Joy. This was a definite standout performance for the festival and has left me wanting to see Nitzer Ebb even more!
Back in the theatre venue the bar was still dishing out bad pints, but the place remained crowded all night and an excellent night of dancing was had, staying right until the end before heading back to the hotel for much needed sleep, then flying home the next evening.
.Overall this was an excellent Amphi, despite some problems with one of the venues, this festival seems to go from strength to strength and selling out has become the norm for it. The lineup is always varied too. Although I mainly saw electronic bands, I was able to pick the ones I most wanted to see, there were plenty of other styles on show from mittelalter to trad goth to synthpop, there truly is something for everybody and I am confident that anybody that attends should have an excellent and memorable time.
Special thanks must also go out to Pennangalan boots, who went to extra special lengths to ensure that my new easyplates for my boots arrived before I flew out.
Analoguetrash – The Tunnel @ Legends, Manchester
After more than a year of attending Analoguetrash it was high time I gave it a write up. Half of the trouble was choosing a ‘Trash to review, given that every one is a unique experience, from the insanity that was the Party Monster themed night, to the colourful anime night to the grand battle royale that was Analoguetrash vs Electrocide, which saw them in a night long DJ battle with a team from Preston’s Darkcide/Electrocide night. This particular night was tipped as the long awaited return, being the first one of 2011 and since December 2010, as the venue had been unavailable in January due to the night falling on New Years. The particular theme for this night was retro sci fi, and the flyers promised 50 foot cybers on the rampage, depicting them terrorising the fair streets of Manchester!
The venue is situated below Legends nightclub on Whitworth street, very close to Picadilly and Oxford road railway stations, and Picadilly gardens bus station. The door price was a very reasonable £4 and inside the venue felt cosy but not claustrophobic. What really set the place off was the decor, lovingly and painstakingly put in place by the promoters prior to opening. Neon gauze fabric streamed down from roof rafters and various inflatable aliens likewise were suspended from the ceiling. The ample sized dancefloor was punctuated with coloured lighting and UVs, and a smoke machine was in operation, but crucially was not overused in an attempt to asphyxiate dancers. The special theme of the night was most evident in the various DIY “robot heads” scattered about the place for punters to put on their heads, as many were doing. This clearly evidenced the most important point about Analoguetrash; leave your pretensions at the door!
If it is anything it is not a night to take yourself too seriously, the clearly illustrated focus of the evening is to let loose and have fun! Musically the evenings promotional material describes itself very broadly as “alt.electronic” with a massive range of artists listed ranging from industrial to EBM to electro to trance and, most crucially, all subversions and perversions in between. The evenings roster of DJs played a very broad range of electronic music, with well known floor fillers playing right alongside lesser known bands and remixes, some of which were the DJs own concoctions. The full dancefloor and buzzing atmosphere paid tribute to the fact that not only did the DJs really know their music, but they were quite clearly very passionate about it too. The evenings theme also showed through in certain parts of the music, with a fair few tracks with a sci-fi twist being played, including amongst the obvious choices like Rotersand some remixes of war of the worlds and star wars, and the responses from the crowd being very enthusiastic.
The night runs until around half past three, often running a bit over with the crowd on the dance floor cheering and demanding “just one more song” before it finally has to be closing time. Overall I think that the strength of Analoguetrash is that its goal is clearly for everybody to have a good time and it dares to be different. The guys who run it put a huge amount of effort into each one, with no two ever being the same, and it is a night where anybody can feel welcome. Although there are “themes” these are not strictly enforced, people are welcome to dress up or dress down and nobody ever feels forced into any kind of niche. This bold and fun loving attitude, coupled with a dynamic, request friendly and diverse choice of music and a friendly venue with a cheap bar makes Analoguetrash well worth checking out, and has made it one of the best loved nights out in Manchester
Android lust return with their eagerly awaited 4th studio album, “the human animal”, and the four year wait since “Devour, rise and take flight” has clearly been well worth it! The most immediately noticeable thing about this release is that the sound has been evolving since their first release “resolution”, moving from harsh noise based sounds towards greater use of melodies and harmonised vocals. That’s not to say there aren’t punctuations of visceral, jarring discord layered within the tracks, waiting to catch you off guard.
Android Lust are anything but predictable, and it makes this album a moving experience, the subtle contrasts between singer Shikhee’s haunting, tortured vocals and the harsh and melodious interplay of the instrumentation. Stylistically the songs tend towards an introverted look at the essence of humanity, especially our interactions and relationships with each other.
Standout tracks include “Intimate stranger”, “God in the hole”, “Saint over” and of special note is “Rub me raw”, a track which I feel really encapsulates much of the essence of what makes this album work so well, taking quite a minimalist electro sound and crafting exceedingly catchy melodies and leaving a long lasting impression. Also it has to be said again, that Shikhee’s vocals are truly outstanding, in an otherworldly, rather unnerving way. Overall a superb release, definitely well worth a listen.
Following on from their self titled debut album and the subsequent “Going to the theatre” comes this latest release from the Arizona based trio Audra. This album is still definitive Audra, with all the elements that made their first two releases stand out; subtle understated guitars punctuated by harder bass and percussion, overlaid with melancholy and introspective vocals to create a sombre and bittersweet ambience reminiscent of the Cure and Joy Division. The difficulty with later releases for a band is the age old dilemma of having a winning formula and sticking with it with the risk of becoming stale or trying a new direction and risking losing what had previously worked so well for them.
The fine art of balancing between these two and actually progressing a winning formula is demonstrated brilliantly by this album. The sound is that little touch more sombre and placid as to make the album feel more matured without actually feeling in any way aged or tired, a true master touch, and the imagery it evokes of time passing through old towns and deserted fun fairs is so distinct as to give teasing suggestions of a concept album. Overall the impression this album leaves is of a work lovingly crafted by a group very passionate about what they do.Whilst comparisons to post punk legends such as Joy Division can very easily be made Audra have clearly crafted their own sound and are following their own path, and the results are very evident. I would definitely recommend keeping an eye on this band, and to enjoy watching them develop and continue to make releases.
Coming back 7 years after their last release as a band (with various solo releases in the interim) come darkwave/ethereal legends Lycia with this 6 track digital only release. From start to finish Fifth Sun demonstrates quite emphatically that Lycia were true genre definers and that they’re still well on top of their game and have only gotten better. At the heart of this album are all the elements of classic darkwave, elements that Lycia made into a staple throughout their career; sweeping, hypnotic guitar soundscapes, pulsating drum machine beats and gorgeously moody vocals from singer Tara VanFlower.
Setting this album apart from genre-typicality is an edgier, almost tribal feel to the whole affair. The beats feel almost ritualistic and Tara’s whimsical mesmerising vocals sing around very elemental themes such as the sun, the moon and the sea. Blended together perfectly as it is, this album is a beautiful, escapist experience. With the whole album consisting simply of six brand new tracks some might wonder “what is Fifth Sun? Is it a studio album? Is it an EP?” The most honest answer would be that Fifth Sun is an incantation, a musical evocation to nature and the elements, not to mention a triumphant return for one of the genres stalwarts and defining members.
It’s really hard to choose stand out tracks from such an inspired album as this, however two tracks that do really stand out are the opener, Cull, with its haunting soundscapes and some of the most frankly beautiful lyrics I’ve ever heard and the namesake track Fifth Sun, where the vocals take on their most tribal and ritualised form to make for an unforgettable listening experience. In a world full of such fantastic newly emerging talent it is really heartening to see such a long standing and well loved band return with such confidence and so very clearly still on form, because I think this can only inspire new artists to achieve what they want, and imbue them with passion for the music they love.
If this digital only release portends the beginning of a re-release of the Lycia back catalogue re-mastered for the digital medium then this is great news for both old fans and new, and Fifth Sun is a perfect chance for existing fans to re-connect with a band that helped build an amazing genre and for new fans to discover why Lycia are so highly regarded the world over.Fifth Sun is available as a digital download from Amazon, Emusic, CD Baby and all good digital music providers.
After a couple of EPs and numerous appearances on many compilations alongside some pretty big names, this duo from Madrid release their first full length studio album, and it does not disappoint. From start to finish this 12 track electronic tour de force sweeps you along on a wild ride of catchy synths and haunting distorted vocals, all backed by pulse pounding bass lines. Not very long into listening, the title of the album becomes very apt, it is indeed infectious and you can’t help but dance; this duo look set to become a big hit in whatever clubs they are played. Stand out tracks from this album include the infectiously catchy “In my dreams” and the extremely pulse pounding “3D”.
For more information on where to purchase albums seehttp://www.terrorerror.net
I had barely recovered from Amphi festival when it was time to jet off once again to Germany, this time to M’era Luna festival for the second time. After a pleasant enough flight to Hannover and train journey to Hildesheim we were at the festival site and ready to get our wristbands and make camp. One thing we immediately noticed was that it was a lot busier, possibly because we arrived a bit later than we had the previous year. When we finally met up with our friends on the campsite there wasn’t actually enough room to pitch our tents in one communal site as we had last year, but we made the best of it anyway and pitched as near to each other as we could in whatever space there was. Not letting this dishearten us it was time to go make the now infamous booze run to stock up on fuel for the festival. We hit another snag when we found that all the supermarkets were closed by that time (I’m clearly far too used to the world of 24 hour or late night supermarkets, an 8PM closing seems unreasonable to me), however we were saved by the wonder that is German petrol stations, stocked as they were with enough booze, water and snacks to fulfil all out needs! Once we got our horde back to the camp we got ourselves dolled up and headed to the big aircraft hangar for the famous hangar party. It proved to be just as good a night as it had been last year, great music and a lot of lovely people, all crammed into a huge hangar and fuelled by very generous cocktails! I staggered back to camp in the wee small hours and attempted that challenge that is sleeping in a tent at a summer festival; it’s a bit like being in an oven!
The next morning I was up reasonably early as bands I wanted to catch that day were on from almost the beginning. With the majority of the bands I was excited about seeing being on that day I had a busy day ahead of me! After a breakfast of champions (I believe it was kebab washed down with iced tea) I went off to the hangar stage to catch only the second act on there that day, Leandra. She’s something of a lesser known artist, but a very accomplished performer, a great singer with a beautiful voice and surprising vocal range, as well as a classically concert pianist. She delivered a spellbinding live performance that left me definitely wanting to catch her live again in the future. After this I stuck around because Qntal were billed to be on next, however due to an injury in the band during Castle party in Poland they had to be replaced by Ignis Faatu. Whilst this band delivered a spirited performance I didn’t find myself captivated at all by them, to me they seemed to be just another Germanic medieval inspired band, fuelled by bagpipes, the whole reason I had been wanting to see Qntal was because they do things a bit differently I think.
After this I headed to the medieval village (it seemed appropriate after the last band) to catch up with my fellow campers over some mead and champagne (a surprisingly delicious combination) and to watch my friend challenge various cyber girls to one of the activities on offer there; pillow fighting whilst sat on a huge pole, the object being to knock your opponent off the pole into the hay. This is entertaining enough normally, but when it was scantily clad cyber girls against a big man in a pink corset and tutu it gained something very special. I believe a lot of people filmed it.
After all this frivolity I headed back to the hangar to catch Faith and the Muse. I had seen them only the year before at Whitby and the performance was amazing, and once again they delivered a great performance, William and Monica’s vocals being backed up by Paul Mercer’s scintillating violin work and a full set of Japanese Taicho drums. The only unfortunate thing was that due to starting a bit late (inevitable when there are seven band members, each with two instruments to sound check) their set had to be cut a bit short. Nevertheless I thoroughly enjoyed it as one of the highlights of the bands thus far. I stuck around after this for Brendan Perry. As a big fan of Dead can Dance this was another performance I was really looking forward to. It was one that I was worried might not happen when he took nearly an hour to set up and sound check, despite only having a guitar, set of keys and vocals to set up. All this preparation did pay off in the end as he delivered a set that really blew me away and had myself and the entire crowd packed into the hangar totally captivated. Highlights of this set included a cover of Song of the Siren that made the hairs on the back of the neck stand up. Once again the peril of being late to start at a festival showed when he had to go off stage all too early, although a big part of that was that we could have happily watched him all day! Next up it was outside to the main stage to see Laibach. I’d been told I’d find their performance unusual for a festival set, and I must say I did, as they performed the majority of their latest album for their set. That said it was very enjoyable as it consisted mainly of Laibach’s own take on various nations national anthems, and doing their own unique covers of songs is something that they are renowned for. They finished up with their seminal stompy crowd favourite “Tanz mit Laibach”, and as I stomped away happily with the rest of the crowd I remember thinking that they probably wouldn’t have been allowed off the stage without performing this one! Next up was Nitzer Ebb. Waiting for them to come on some old German hardcore EBM follower attempted to berate me and tell me that the upcoming band was not for me, because I was wearing neon hair falls and a Faith and the Muse tee. This is something that really makes me cross, narrow minded fools. I don’t mind if people want to restrict themselves to only one type of music but trying to tell other people that they can’t listen to something, especially because of the way they dress, is just plain stupid. I didn’t let this get me down and Nitzer Ebb came on to give one of the standout performances of the festival, totally packed with energy and enthusiasm, they really got the crowd engaged and moving.
After all this excitement it was back to camp for a rest and some food and drinking whilst I waited with my fellow campers for the evening headline performance, the Sisters of Mercy. This was always going to be something that really polarised opinions, most people seem to either love them or hate them. Personally I don’t think they deserve to be surrounded by so much apparent mysticism. At the end of the day they are just a band and can deliver good and bad performances, go through rifts and change styles and go for money or just for pure artistic gratification just like any other band. The first thing I noticed about them was that they like their smoke machines! Within seconds they had the huge outdoor stage covered in a thick haze of smoke. Some people will take Andrew Eldritch coming on stage in a white hoody and with a shaved head as an attempt to slap the face of the whole “goth” culture which he has so often railed at; others will take it as him being a pure artist, all about the music and not any pretension. Personally I think he was just a bit chilly and overall I really enjoyed the Sister’s show. The excessive use of smoke coupled with the stage lights made for an impressive sight, especially on such a huge stage in front of such an enormous crowd; and musically they were on top form. The Sisters brought to a spectacular close what was a great first day of the festival. Following this I had a relax at the Shisha tent in the medieval village. This often gets very busy so in future years they will have to get more Hookahs, as the wait for one was quite long, but this was spent sipping a delicious chai tea. It’s a wonderful place to relax with friends of an afternoon or evening, or just to have a cup of tea and people watch. Bed would probably have been the wiser option after this but the atmosphere of the campsite was too great to pass on so I went for a wander to enjoy all the spontaneous parties that people were having outside their tents and ended up in bed in the early hours again.
The next day I felt a little bit fragile from the night before, but there weren’t so many bands I was that keen on seeing that day and they didn’t start until after lunch, so it wasn’t so bad. When I did take to the outside stage it was to see Hanzel und Gretyl, who gave a fun and energetic performance, punctuated by the copious amounts of beer they put away on stage! They really are consummate showmen. The only downside of their set was the German kids who decided to have a mosh. I’m not a fan on moshing at the best of times (it’s a bit inconsiderate to the rest of the crowd) but when I have a hangover it’s really playing with fire!
Once Hanzel und Gretyl had finished I spent the rest of the afternoon having a browse around the various shops on the site, and enjoying the cocktail bar very conveniently placed between the two stages. At one point a friend and I tried to get into the hangar stage to see Agonoize followed by Feindflug, but the hangar was full to capacity. This was a sure sign of the inflated numbers attending the festival (around 25000 this year by all accounts) with such large venues now being filled. Instead of queuing in the hope of getting in I had a sit with some friends and watched the 69 eyes from a distance. They were quite fun to watch and listen to, quite rocky, but not something I’d go out of my way to see. As evening drew in we got into the hangar to see Skinny Puppy. I’d seen them not very long ago in Manchester, and it was very interesting to see Oghr perform at a venue large enough that he could actually stand up straight in his outrageous outfit! Once again Skinny Puppy delivered a solid performance of electro industrial, the highlight being the various horrific costumes and splashes of fake blood flying around, and the crowd pleasing song “Assimilate”. After this I went back to the main stage to watch the final headliner Placebo from a distance. They aren’t a band I’ve ever been particularly into, but I enjoyed watching their performance. Musically they were a lot more subdued than most of the bands I’d seen that day, and it proved a great way to wind down and close off what was a very frenetic festival. The rest of the evening was spent drinking the last of the great booze horde and soaking up the last of the fantastic atmosphere at the campsite, where everybody was out and singing and dancing and generally making a lot of noise. The general feeling that seemed to pervade was that nobody really wanted M’era Luna to be over; I know I didn’t, and this is something that crossed all language and cultural barriers. After a rainy morning packing up the tents it was back off to Hannover and then to Manchester, and the end of an amazing weekend.
For me this festival was always going to be constantly compared in my mind to the one last year, in part because it was such a great one last year, with many of my friends calling it the best to date. Overall I think 2010 proved just as great as 2009. There was slightly less of a community at our camp, due to the fact that many of the people we spent M’era Luna 2009 with couldn’t make it this year, but there was still the overriding community of the campsite and festival as a whole, as well as a great lineup. I will definitely be doing it all again next year, bring it on!
This pair seem to have a strong foothold in both the gothic and the darkwave/ethereal/dreamwave genres with this very enjoyable release, the standout track being the opener “Nothing else but you”, a heartfelt and powerfully delivered track that really sets the scene, and the rest of the EP effortlessly delivers on this without missing a beat. Definitely a band to keep an eye on in the future, they will be going places, as can be seen recently with their landing of a support slot for MethodCell.
This was one artist I have wanted to see for quite some time, I’d heard a lot about their on stage antics with pyrotechnics and explosives, and they did not disappoint! First on were the support act, Combichrist. It was my first time seeing them, and they impressed me with their energy and the way they got the crowd moving, I’m definitely looking forward to seeing more live performances from them in the future. Their half an hour set felt a little short, probably because I’d been enjoying it so much, and then it was time for the main event!
From the moment the band stepped through holes suddenly cut in the backdrop with blowtorches to the house lights going up after the last of many encores the MEN arena was in a state of industrial induced mayhem! This band have phenomenal stage presence, from singer Till Lindemann standing front and centre, wooing the crowd with his powerful vocals to the keyboardist standing on a revolving treadmill while he plays. The band interacted well with the crowd (during the encores the keyboardist crowd surfed out into the midst of the fans in an inflatable dingy) and with each other (a mock fight between Till and the keyboardist led to Till throwing him into a crate and then dropping burning fluid down onto him from the top of a raised platform, only for the keyboardist to emerge wearing a skin-tight glittery jumpsuit). The bands antics were often outrageous and at times joyously camp, but they were always spectacular.
It could be argued that the pyrotechnics and props were just as big players in the show as the band and the music itself. Rammstein are now notorious for their use of pyros, and it does feel that for this tour they really did try and outdo even themselves. Highlights included their flamethrower masks for the song “Feuer Frei”, a mock stage invader being set alight by a petrol pump rigged as a flamethrower wielded by Till, a whole load of baby dolls with laser beam eyes descending on wires and then exploded, a rocket shot from the stage to the back of the arena and then back again during “Du hast”, Till mounting a decidedly phallic pink cannon and shooting foam all over the crowd at the “climax” of the song “Pussy” and then wearing a set of mechanical angel wings that shot huge jets of flame from the tips during the final encore, “Engel”. Interspersed with all of these moments of industrial pyrotechnic insanity were various other bangs, flashes and sudden jets of flame!
Of course a wild pyrotechnic show is always fun, but people go to see a band (usually) for the music, and Rammestein did not disappoint on this front either. All present and correct were most of their great hits such as “Du hast”, “Feuer Frei”, “Engel”, “Ich Will”, “Sonne” and “Links 2-3-4”. They played for a long time and delivered three encores.
Overall it was a spectacular experience, definitely well worth the ticket price and then some!
M’era Luna 2009 August 8th – 9th, Hildesheim, Germany
I headed off to Manchester airport early(ish) on the morning of Friday the 7th, bound for Hildesheim and my first ever M’era Luna festival, with two other friends, all very excited about the experience ahead. One of my friends had been a few times before and had been telling me great things about it. We flew from Manchester airport to Hannover with Flybe, a rather decent budget airline, only took a couple of hours and a rather smooth flight was had all in all. Only the usual logistical problems of Goths flying to a festival; having to take off huge boots at security and trying to cram everything you could possibly need, including a tent ETC into a big rucksack without going over the baggage weight limit. Once in Hannover we caught the train to the city, randomly meeting two more people from Manchester on the way, who were on their first M’era Luna too and decided to join camps with us. We met with a few more people from Manchester in Hannover, who had flown in the day before and then it was off to the train station again to catch the train to Hildesheim, the site of the festival.
The trains in Germany are very efficient, and rather comfortable to travel on. There were also a lot of people in the train station clearly headed for the festival, so it’s always possible to play “follow the goth” if you get a bit lost. Once we’d arrived in Hildesheim it was a simple case of spending a few euros to get a taxi to the airfield (all you needed to say to the driver was “M’era Luna, bitte” and they knew where to take you) and we were at the festival, by around late afternoon. A short wait in the queue and we had our wristbands and entered the campsite. We made camp with a few more people who were friends of my friend who had been before; a couple from Scotland and a couple from Northampton. Once the tents were all pitched and a quick change of clothes was made (mesh is such a godsend when the weather is so good) it was time for the epic booze run! We took our newly emptied huge rucksacks with us out of the campsite and a short(ish) walk to the nearest bargain booze wholesaler in Hildesheim, where we stocked up on a few sensible things like water, cartons of iced tea and crisps, and of course the essentials; lots and lots of booze! Glass bottles are, rather sensibly, banned from the campsite and festival ground so we decanted the spirits into some big plastic bottles my friend had brought over (or you can buy plastic bottles of drink there and just tip the pop out) and headed back to the campsite, with our big haul of drink.
During the afternoon and evening we had a nice relax and broke out the drink, and I took some time to explore the campsite. I had been told that it was nothing at all like British festival camps, and they certainly weren’t lying! The campsite boasts such amenities as flushing toilets, sinks and showers, and plenty of them at that so there’s very little queuing for them, and they’re cleaned every day. In addition there’s a small shop where essentials can be purchased, as well as quite cheap beer and wine. There are numerous food stalls serving all kinds of things from roast pork, fresh off the spit with sauerkraut, to German noodles, Chinese food and, a really rarity, donner kebabs that actually taste good even when you’re sober! The amount on offer is fantastic, and really does cater to whatever mood you might be in. There is also a medieval village with costumed performers, numerous food and drink stalls (plenty of cider and mead on offer) and such quaint offerings as a place to get a traditional shave or even get handfasted (should you happen to meet “the one”, while you’re over there). There’s also a Shisha tent, where you can relax and smoke flavoured shisha tobacco from a hookah pipe, it’s very exotic. During my wanderings I ran into another pal, from Luton, and with the help of another person from my hand we lifted his tent into our camp, by this time we had the makings of a British goth supercamp, and the atmosphere was really great.
It was evening by this time so after some food (and more drink, of course) it was time to don some makeup and glad rags and get over to check out the club night at the big hangar. Entry was about 7 Euros and drinks were ridiculously expensive inside, but we’d already done plenty of drinking beforehand and there is nothing quite like a club night held inside a huge aircraft hangar that is absolutely packed. The atmosphere was amazing and the setlist actually wasn’t half bad. We stopped off at the medieval village on the way back to our tents, where we were treated to the bizarre spectacle of German bagpipers playing sea shanties by a load of blazing fires. It seemed to have drawn quite a good crowd, I suppose they’re quite popular there. After collapsing in my tent in the early hours it was time to attempt some sleep, with the bassline from the hangar club still pulsing through the ground (one of the perils of being camped so close to the festival ground, you may go to sleep with Nitzer Ebb thrumming through you).
Day one of the festival itself and there was plenty of time for a big lie in and a leisurely breakfast before the first bands were due on. During the night a couple from Southend had arrived and we’d helped them to pitch their tent and then invited them to join our camp. The first band came on the main stage at 11, with the first band coming on the hangar stage a bit later, allowing people to stagger things somewhat if they wanted to catch bands on both stages. The first band on the main stage was No More. I had never heard of them before but they seemed to be alright. It’s always hard to be the opener for anything, especially a huge festival like M’era Luna, and they did well and drew a fair crowd. Next it was off to the hangar stage to catch Haematarde. All I’d heard about these were that they were medieval industrial, and surprisingly enough it worked well, they out on a very entertaining show. Next it was back out to the main stage to catch Whispers in the shadow. I definitely need to follow these some more, not the least because Sin from Imprint is doing some work with them, they appeared to be a very strong trad goth act, and by this time the crowd around the main stage had grown very large. We went back to the hangar stage next where, in a change to the advertised lineup, Faderhead was on. He put on a really amazing show, and managed to get a very tired and groggy morning crowd dancing quite energetically, he was definitely one of the highlights of the morning. Next it was back out to the main stage to catch Krypteria. This is another female fronted gothic metal band, which is less my thing these days than it used to be. That being said they did a string performance, had good stage presence and their singer didn’t look half bad, so all in all it was a good show. Next we went back to the hangar to see Lola Angst, on personal recommendation from my friend, who had seen them before. It was certainly a very entertaining show, with a very charismatic (if slightly unhinged) singer pouring beer over himself and throwing chocolate money into the crowd, and the music was really rather good, with quite a dark electro feel to it. It’s just a shame he wasn’t on the main stage, where he might have been able to play his church organ that shoots flames!
After this we were in the mood for a bit of a wander so we had a mooch around the vast market area near the hangar stage. There were plenty of different shops selling all kinds of different clothes, accessories, CDs ETC. If you end up on a bit of a shopping spree then there’s a cash machine inside the festival ground too. The great thing about the setup of the main stage is that you can hear the bands from the market and the medieval village, as well as the camp if you pitch fairly close to the festival ground entrance. The hangar and market are also at the top of a bit of a rise, so if you don’t fancy being in a big crowd you can always watch the main stage from there. We had a bit of a wander in the market then we went back to camp for a bit of a nap, then had some food before heading back to the main stage. During this time I heard Oomph performing. This is one band I do slightly regret not actually seeing, but I did manage to hear their set whilst tucking into a late lunch and they did put in a fantastic performance from what I heard! Next we saw the Birthday Massacre, who did an excellent energetic performance, followed by Blutengel, who put on a good show, helped out by the visual elements they incorporate, such as the stripping nuns and naughty nurses dancing in the background!
Next it was synth-pop legend Peter Heppner taking to the stage. He did an excellent show, during which I felt the one solitary drop of rain of the entire festival fall, then the clouds went away and the rest of the weather was glorious hot sunshine (perfext weather for fishnet burn!). With evening closing in Apocalyptica took to the stage and did an impressive performance with their cellos and headbanging. They certainly are good even if you’re not a fan of gothic metal, because they do bring something quite different to a festival lineup. The headliner for that day was Nightwish. I had mixed feelings about this band, I would have loved to have seen them live when Tarja Turunnen was their lead singer. I think their new lead singer is nothing special and their last album was slightly lacklustre. That said they did a pretty good set, and the crowd was certainly behind them, with everyone in the crowd being handed and lighting sparklers at one point! The thing that really let them down was their PA blew out halfway through one of their songs, so they kept playing (maybe their monitors were still going?) but nobody could hear them! Thankfully this was soon rectified and they finished up a decent show with really good reception from the crowd. I was absolutely shattered at this point from watching bands from 11 AM until midnight, so no dancing at the hangar club for me, I did go into the village and get rather drunk on cider though!
The next morning was the same leisurely affair. This time we didn’t go into the festival ground until around midday, to catch Zeromancer. They did a thoroughly cracking set, and really impressed me and got the crowd going. I’d definitely be interested in seeing them live again if I get the chance. Next up was Schelmish, some German folk-rock type act. I had no idea who they were, or what they were singing (it was all in German) but they played well and the crowd seemed to really be behind them. L’ame Immortelle were up next, and did manage to impress me with having both a good performance musically, as well as a female lead singer who is very easy on the eyes. Incidentally their male lead, Thomas Rainer, had been performing the day before in the hanger with his project, Nachtmahr. Next on were the Cruxshadows, who I’d never seen before but had really gotten into their music. They did a really amazing set, with Rogue climbing up the lighting rig and into the crowd and really getting good interaction going with the audience, and the rest of the band being very energetic and lively too. This was one of the highlights of the festival for me, partly also because it was one of the bands that I did know quite well and was keen to see live.
After this I went back to camp to relax with my friends and a couple of boxes of cheap German wine, whilst listening to Alexander Vallajenov and Tiamat on the main stage, who both sounded quite good. After this myself and a couple of fellow campers took off to the hangar stage to see IAMX. This was another standout act of the festival. I’d only heard of them up until that point, but the set really blew me away and I really enjoyed it and would definitely like to catch them live again if I get the chance. After this we indulged ourselves at the cocktail bar on the festival ground before filtering through the crowd during Subway to Sally’s set to await the main headline act, the Prodigy! Waiting for them to come on was a really amazing experience in itself, sipping a tequila sunrise and chatting to people from all over the world and all different walks of life, there was such a good atmosphere and a really tangible sense of anticipation, the atmosphere was truly electric! The Prodigy came on and did a really amazing set! The entire front third of the crowd ended up dancing and everyone enjoyed themselves. The setlist was fantastic, the band was clearly on form and the crowd just seemed to lap it up. It ended up being one of those performances you wished would go on for a bit longer, but eventually there could be no more encores and we went back to our camp, really buzzing from a fantastic day of music! This second day of bands finished a bit earlier, at about 11:30, and we all settled down for a bit of a relax and some drinking. We invented a new cocktail and I went with a few friends for a chill in the Shisha tent. All too soon the day was over and we had to head off to sleep, or as close as we could get to sleep.
The next day it was time to pack up and go. When you arrive on the campsite you are given a plastic bag and a chip. Returning this with the bag full of litter gets you 5 Euros back, which I think is quite a nice incentive. We packed up and said our goodbyes to those who were heading off elsewhere and then took the train back to Hannover. Most people were heading straight back to fly home that day, but my friends I’d travelled over with and I were staying an extra day in Hannover, to relax a bit and see some of the city. Hannover is a beautiful city and it would be nice to see it properly one day. For our part we just visited a few bars, took some nice photos and had an early night before flying home the next day.
I was told by my friend who had been before that this was one of the best M’era Luna festivals ever. I could see why, the weather was beautiful all the way through, and the lineup was amazing. For my own part it really lived up to all the hype, and then some! The atmosphere is really special, the facilities on offer are really good, you can tell somebody put alot of thought into the organisation of this and to top it off you get alot of really good bands on the lineup for the price of your ticket (about 70 Euros). I had an amazing time and would definitely recommend it to anybody. The format of performance is different to alot of the other festivals (WGT, Amphi ETC) in that it’s mostly outdoors, this has advantages and disadvantages, as does anything. All in all I had an amazing experience and would recommend it wholeheartedly, and I’m presently making plans to go again in 2010
PROFILE OF MR PROZAC
Who are your favourite band of All-Time? The Prodigy (along with the Chemical Brothers and The beatles i was brought up with them when i was in nappies!!)
Best Gig you have ever been to? Inkubus sukkubus and N.F.D: Ink...sukk...'s singer wont stop hopping about! Favourite Drink? soft drink: Mango juice. alcoholic: Strega
Top 5 Albums of All - Time? First and last and always - Sisters Of Mercy. Pretty hate machine - Nine Inch Nails. Past present, future - Rob Zombie. Bloody kisses - Type O Negative. Fallen - Fields Of The Nephilim.
Favourite Musician? Jhonny Cash (he puts all his soul in his music and never goes [or went] wrong!)
Favourite 3 songs Ever? Sleeping with ghosts - Placebo. Black No. 1 - Type O Negative. Dead of night - Depeche Mode
If you could go to a 'Dream Gig' anywhere, where would it be and which 3 Bands would play? On the hills of the peaked district near to Stoke (ver beatuiful walk) or in Nottingham as ive heard its a massive venue, playing would be: The Mission, The Glove and Hawkwind.
Fantasy Date for a Nite out? Brian Molko.
An amazing club almost like a weekly party, this used to be in the Racehourse pub but now located at the top of Abington street. Ran by what must have been 4 people DJ-ing of all sorts of genres, a mix of EMB, industrial, goth and darkwave with as many requests as you want!
There is something of not just a friendly and inviting atmosphere but it draws you in and you feel a part of everybody. you can dance alone but this does not last long before one of the DJ's off having a pint comes and joins you! Some of the friendliest people you could think of!
You could go alone and nobody would know it because you stand there and chat to who you like not worrying about making a twat of yourself! definelly worth going to again and there should be a Myspace home page from the main DJ 'Bod' with updates from 'abolution' 'the rapture' and many other clubs to come!
The only let down of the night would be the bar, i have never been to a pub with so many people behind the bar and only one of them knowing what hey are doing. glasses not being washed, ages to take an order and nobody knows how much the drinks are!!!! but i must say, The Wedgewood is now the place to go!!
RANT ABOUT MILTON KEYNES !!!
Okay so who of you have been to Milton Keynes? Well if you hav'nt then here is a pre-warning... DON'T!!! I'm sorry if i have offneded anybody who lives in the Milton Keynes area but whoever designed the road system must have been a relative to a blind mole! Before i entered MK i don't belive i have seen that many roundabouts in my life... Once again they all look the damn same!
I guess some places have a good side: The bus service must be one of the best in the country that i know of (if they were there on-time!) but the problem with that is the amount of bus bays surounding the main shopping centres, you never know were you are and tyring to get to them is enough of a pain! you don't have to walk through swamps of vacant apes and market stalls throwing clothing that time warped from the 70's in a discount bin in your face.
I please beg anybody reading this that if they see me in Milton Keynes either not heading towards the bus bays or towards a toilet (not that i can find any public ones within 3 miles) to please shoot me! or send me to a mental ward! you will be doing me a favour! Again i apolagise if i have offended anybody but you must be mad to live there!
CRADLE OF FILTH
As we walk in to the Wulfrun stadium, Wolverhampton after eventually finding the true entrance and not a dark dinggy door around the side on the main road; we find one of the first en-mentioned black metal suport bands playing. the stereotypical white powdered face and over blackened eyes with the three members hrowing there hair around the place. Eventually they finish without a word of who they were, were they are from or anything and there is a brake for the already drunk to top up their evening.
The lights reden and everything seems to become more bloody, slowlly two shdows appear from the back of the stage, a red haired cybver woman and a man looking like a gothed up, neo-nazi captain sensible on mahic mushrooms... Why not? with grinding riffs and electronic Hitler recordings playing in the background they carry on onstage obviouslly after having drank far to much, the male guitarist/backing singer/Captain sensible gone wacko constantlly trys to hand out a free beer to the begging fans yet every time failling and leaving it to fall being wasted. after the two last dramatic songs with a high energy left behind them the waiting fans wait a little longer for the people they spent their money and came to see.
After what must have been one hour and maybe one hour and a half of sound check with a skinny bald man calling down the main microphone 'one two, onw two, tits... and... arse... one... two...'. I must say i have never heard a sound check quite like it!
Finally the stars of the evening walk apon the stage with the guitarist wearing the usual long leather skirt, dani with his famous 'mummy' style purple jumper, everything seems to be the same and in place, there are no signs of a band soon to fall apart but to carry on with what they do best. At the same time they make every single soul in the room explode. Dani Filth introduces him and his band through the microphone and off they go. Non stop all the way apart from one ten minute brake for the band to regain their energy. From the newest 'Nymphetamine' and 'Temptation' and then the oldest 'The principle of evil made flesh' and 'Her ghost in the fog'. With a quick glance around the croud you notice all the types of people that 'Cradle of filth' appeal to.
With a wide variety of people, hippies, children, the elderlly and of course the typical teenagers with the extreme over the top make up who spend most of their time dreaming of joinging a band alike as 'Cadle...' They finally finish it off with still the extatic fans cheering on for the last fifteen minutes of 'Cradle...' being ofstage, only the hope drives the fans from passing out. As the venue floods with a long dark shadow apparentlly being humans, you only notice how much energy you have lost when the cold sharp air hits you and you notice how you may not have seen a staging such as that.
Still to the day i wish about being back in that room. The only let down of the evening being the fact that the bar closed at the stupid time of ten o'clock! a band i would deffinetlly recogmend to anybody into black metal, death metal or even heavy goth. Or even if you like to hear something new.
What is your favourite sort of music ? EBM, Industrial, Darkwave, SynthPop.
Who are your All-Time favourite Band ? VNV Nation, for what they have done for the scene.
Best Gig you have EVER been to ? First time I saw VNV Nation which was at Dark Jubilee, London, 2002, I got right down the front for that one!
Which is the best Festival you have ever been to ? Amphi Festival, Cologne - Beautiful city and great location venue on the banks of the Rhine, I went there in 2006 and 2007.
Favourite Drink ? German Pilseners!
Top 5 Albums of All-Time ? In no particular order - VNV Nation - Empires, Assemblage 23 - Failure, Depeche Mode - Violator, IAMX - The Alternative, Retrosic - God Of Hell.
Fav 3 Songs of All-Time ? This is always subject to change, ask me for three different ones next week! - Depeche Mode "Home", IAMX "Missile", VNV Nation "Beloved".
If you could go to one Dream Gig, where would it be and which 3 Bands would play ? Last Cathedral, Berlin - great venue though too small for a gig or Dusseldorf Stahlwerk - another excllent venue and playing would be Lola Angst, Depeche Mode (with Alan Wilder) and The Retrosic.
Who is your Favourite DJ ? Rob Lee, (Heresy, Coventry), he, in my opinion seems to have his finger on the pulse when it comes to knowing what to play.
Who would be your Fantasy Date for a night out ??? Sonja Kraushofer (L'ame Immortelle).
I'd first heard of Blackfield Festival late last year and over the course of a few months as more acts were announced, Angela & I decided that we would attend and go with our friends Gary, Jo, Terry and Jane. As this was the first Blackfield Festival and at a location none of us had been to before, we felt that it would serve as a good warm-up to Amphi Festival in Cologne, a couple of weeks later. "Von der szene…fur die szene" (from the scene for the scene) is the motto of Blackfield Festival, organized by Neuwerk Management, whose roster includes an impressive line-up of some of the best acts in the Gothic and Dark Electronic scene. Originally announced as a two-day festival, this was then extended to three days, due to popular ticket sales and this meant that 25 bands played over the three days on a single stage and they represented the many elements of the scene from gothic metal to hard electro to Mittelalter.
The Amphitheatre in Gelsenkirchen is a venue that is built into the embankment of the Rhein Canal and provides a superb backdrop for the stage which is built into the water and from time to time along the canal were passing giant fuel tankers. This was also the venue used for the very first Amphi Festival in 2005, before it moved to its current larger site at Cologne Tanzbrunnen in 2006. From wherever you were in the Ampitheatre, you could see the stage quite clearly and credit goes to the engineers for providing excellent sound over the whole weekend. When we arrived, we exchanged our tickets for wristbands and also received a sticker and booklet, which gave biographies of each performing band and running times as well as a map of the venue and a questionnaire for your opinions. Several thousand people were there over the duration of the festival and at 5.30pm on the Friday, the first band Pink Turns Blue started, we arrived well into their set and so being overwhelmed with the venue, we took to wandering around the various stalls, which included Zillo and Out Of Line, so I didn't see them perform. I also noticed that the "Crazy Clip TV" crew were filming the entire festival, probably for future inclusion on the excellent "Into The Darkness" DVD series that they produce. We had found a spot to sit down, just left of the stage and just yards from the VIP entrance area, which meant a lot of going up to the VIPs for a chat and to have photos and autographs with members of VNV Nation and Icon of Coil, all of which were very obliging to us and other fans.
Next up were American band, Stromkern, a band that I felt I didn't give enough attention to when I saw them at Infest in 2006. Overall, I was most impressed with their set, which consisted of favourites, Heretic, Stand Up and Armageddon and Ned Kirby's rap-style vocals were on excellent form and judging by the reaction, the crowd were pleased too. Up next and perhaps the most anticipated band of the weekend, Icon Of Coil, playing their first European show in years. Andy, Seb & Christian were all there and played an energetic 40 minute set, with a guest appearance from Ronan & Mark from VNV Nation, to serve drinks to the band, between songs. Floorkiller, Thrill Capsule, Dead Enough For Life, Shelter, Regret were all played, which had all of the crowd moving their feet and for some of us, it was certainly worth coming over just to see them. Dreadful Shadows followed and their singer, Sven Freidrich was making his first of two appearances over the weekend. He is a difficult person to photograph, due to his constant pacing across the stage and although I am not familiar with their material, I recall hearing a well-executed cover of New Order's True Faith and he drew a good crowd, eager to see this band in action again after a many year's silence. Headliners for this evening are Blutengel, who seem to divide opinion amongst the scene, either you love them or loathe them (personally, I love them) and as usual, they all make a grand entrance, leading into "Singing Dead Men". The recent CD, Labyrinth was released last year to positive reviews and many of the tracks from it were played tonight, as well as older material such as Die With You, Bloody Pleasures, Lovekiller and The Oxidising Angel, amongst others. The female singers, Constance and Ulli sang well and each performed solo, Constance singing "Sunrise" and Ulli with "Seelenschmerz". The theatrical aspect of the show was in abundance as the various flashes and bangs of the pyrotechnics went off and they finished after a 70 minute set, which the crowd loved. After this, we left the venue for the short walk to the bus stop for the bus back into Gelsenkirchen, as an early night was in order as we'd all had little sleep the night before, with catching very early morning flights to get here. This meant that we were well refreshed for the following day…
Our hotel was just 50 yards from the bus station and with a regular service which went past the Ampitheater, 5 kilometres away, it was no problem getting there and back, in fact the majority of the bus was filled with Goths going there and I heard one person refer to it as the "Schwarze Bus". We arrived before Midday to see Colony 5, a Swedish synth-pop duo, who played a confident set for an opener as there were not many there yet and they played their latest release, Knives as well as old favourite, Plastic World, amongst others. After these, were Iris, who I missed most of their set, due to having a beer and wandering around the markets, however, I did hear that they were plagued by technical problems and when I saw them perform their final song, "Sorrow Expert" and they had built up quite a crowd during their set. Solar Fake, the newest project of Zeraphine's and Dreadful Shadow's Sven Freidrich, were next and this unlike his other bands is purely electronic and sounding not unlike some of the club mixes that he has previously produced with Zeraphine. I was most impressed with his performance and again, he was pacing up and down the stage and supported by one synth player. A recent favourite of mine, The Shield was played as well as a cover of Radiohead's Creep and another stand-out track Hero & Conqueror.
Diorama were next, who I had previously seen at Amphi last year and they opened up with perhaps their most well known track, Advance and played to quite a large following and they also played other well known numbers, Synthesize Me and The Girls in a good 40 minute set, which received rapturous approval from the crowd. The two following bands, Northern Lite and Catastrophe Ballet, I did not see was I went to get something to eat and drink and try to find some shade from the sun, which was almost unbearable (for me anyway) due to the heat. Naturally, the amphitheatre does not offer any shade from the sun except for the canopy above the stage, which extends into crowd area, before its steps. After these, was Modcom, which is Ronan Harris' analogue solo project and wheeled onto the stage were a bank of synthesizers, which resembled an old telephone exchange and he launched into "OneZero", a recently released track, which appears on the excellent "Advanced Electronics 6" compliation. There were many in the crowd wearing VNV Nation shirts (myself included!) and Modcom T-Shirts and these seemed to form the hardcore of his fans. I was totally overwhelmed by this, after seeing VNV Nation so many times before and this was great to see him making such a rare appearance with Modcom, which sound-wise is a lot harder than VNV Nation. Needless to say, my feet couldn't stop moving! Other highlights of his set were the Modcom remix of VNV's Chrome and the final track, EMP. Samsas Traum were next and an odd choice for the festival really as they didn't really fit into any of the categories of the other bands playing, as their style is more in a black-metal style, though I was disappointed that they did not play "Endstation Eden", one of their more popular songs. They certainly drew many of their fans there and served as a good warm-up for Subway To Sally. During Samsas Traum's set, a distraction in the form of a hot air balloon, which nearly ditched into the canal, diverted many of the fan's attentions!
Subway To Sally are hugely popular within the scene and their style of "folk-metal-rock" draws a devoted following. Their stage shows are very impressive with singer Eric Fish repeatedly getting his audience to chant the band's name. Several members performing fire-eating, blowing flames into the air during their songs and for me, a highlight was seeing them perform the powerful track, "Sieben", though with the songs being all in German, I am not sure of the subject matter of their lyrics. I have heard it said that often in Germany, the penultimate act of the day, is for very many the real headliner and this was perhaps evident with the sheer number of fans who left after Subway To sally, who did not want to see the headliner, England's Nitzer Ebb. I watched these for about half an hour and they certainly were energetic and as can be expected at their shows, a moshpit opened up in the crowd, with many throwing themselves at each other! By this time, the aftershow party had already opened in a large tent on the grounds and guest DJ was Mark Jackson from VNV Nation, who naturally started his set with Reaper's Twisted Trophy Hunter (after all it is him singing on it). The aftershow went on until 5am, but not having that much stamina after a long day, we left around midnight for the bus…
For me, it's always a bit sad when you arrive at the last day of the festival knowing that it won't happen again for another year and today it was announced that the festival would take place again in 2009, with VNV Nation and ASP already announced. This was excellent news for me and also for Gary, who being a huge ASP fan has hosted them at his venue, Sheffield Corporation. We arrived just before Midday, to hear that Solitary Experiments had already started, so we made our way down to near the front of the stage. An excellent show by them, playing Delight, Watching Over You, Odyssey of Mind and Seele Bricht, their collaboration with Felix from Feindflug, who I was hoping would appear for that track. They were all wearing red shirts and black ties and afterwards, I spoke to them and we had photos taken with them and they said their new image was in theme with their forthcoming CD. Gary also spoke to them and commented how they were the first ever band on the scene to play at Sheffield Corporation as part of his clubnight and upon release of the new CD, we may hope to see them in Sheffield again. Schelmish, a Mittelalter band we missed, but we returned to watch Reaper, the band of the talented Vasi Vallis. He was supported by two synth players and tore through an excellent show playing Execution of Your Mind, Twisted Trophy Hunter (without Mark Jackson unfortunately), She's a Devil and a Whore and my personal favourite, Robuste Maschine. For this show, the PA seemed to be really loud, not that I was complaining and it certainly moved my feet!
Next were Heimataerde, a hard electro band with Mittelalter influences, think Feindflug with bagpipes and flutes, as I say! They came onto the stage in full chain-mail armour carrying shields and long spiked staffs and by the time opening track Deus Lo Volt had finished, they had set up the stage with spiked defences. A great show with plenty of visual elements, which was certainly popular with the crowd. Assemblage 23 were next and performed a good set, with showcased tracks from all of their albums and Tom's commanding voice was in great from. Highlights included Drive, You Haven't Earned it and Naked, amongst others. We were very surprised to see backstage in the VIP area, that Adrian Hates of Diary of Dreams unexpectedly turned up, so Gary and Jo went into the VIP area for a chat and photos! I think that was the highlight of Jo's weekend! For me, the next band is one I'd been looking most forward to seeing, Spetsnaz, with their brand of catchy old-school EBM and for this, I managed to get down the front, thankfully, outside of the circle that is the moshpit, as there was a fair bit of slamming going .. the opening track, Allegiance, Pontus had got all hot, so off came his tracksuit top to reveal a Spanish football shirt, which drew boos from the crowd as Germany had lost to them in last week's Euro Championship final. What was Pontus' response? – FUCK YOU !! An excellent 40 minute set with plenty of songs – well rarely does one of their tracks go over 4 minutes and the band were in humorous form, especially before That Perfect Body, which drummer Stefan said was about him, before revealing his rather rotund stomach!
Local favourites SITD were next and they performed a great set, especially brutal versions of Stammheim and Snuff Machinery along with the futurepop styled, Rose Coloured Skies. Their singer Tom must have been hot wearing a beanie hat in that weather and it was clear to see that they were a good choice for the festival. There was also an autograph tent there and I took the opportunity to get all my SITD CD's signed and Jo went to Vasi of Reaper and he kindly autographed her arm in permanent marker, which would probably take some washing to remove! The Cruxshadows were next and after initial sound problems, which meant they had to re-start, Rogue soon fell into the swing of things and it wasn't too long before he was in the crowd and scaling the stage. The band have now expanded to a seven piece including two violinists and they played some of their best songs, Birthday, Marilyn My Bitterness, Winterborn and Dragonfly.
Next were Schandmaul, another mittelalter band, who have a huge following with many of their releases entering high in the German Media Control Charts. It took some time before they started as a series of rack-mounted lighting had to be installed, which formed a backdrop behind them. They opened with "Herren Der Winde" and played a 60 minute set, much to the delight of the crowd. When the crowd had vacated the area in front of the stage, we took this as an opportunity to get right near the front for the final act of the festival, Lacrimosa. The Lacrimosa Theme began before leading into the powerful "Komet". Tilo was using a walking cane to move around as he had hurt his leg, so this meant that he was not able to throw his arms around as he usually does during the orchestral parts of their songs. Other highlights included Kelch Der Leibe, Letzte Ausfahrt Leben and Lichtgestalt. For the encore, which due to a strict 11pm consisted of only Copycat, saw Anni taking centre stage for her vocal parts, all of which were performed to a video backdrop with great visuals. Afterwards, we hung around and after about 20 minutes, Tilo and Anni appeared and the fans were rewarded with autographs and hugs, especially Angela, who had her photos signed by both of them. Also, at Blackfield we met bumped into an Australian girl, Sarah, who is a huge Lacrimosa fan and we had previously met her at Woodstage last year and also met some other people who had travelled to it from the UK. Afterwards, we all went back to the hotel bar for drinks and discussed how at these festivals, the Germans are way ahead of the game in terms of organisation and line-ups and that getting to these festivals can work out cheaper than you think, if booked well in advance. With this, I will be recommending this festival to people back here in the UK and we already looking forward to it again next year!http://blackfield-festival.de/
NOCTURNAL CULTURE NIGHT '07 REVIEW.
The small town of Deutzen, 30km south of Leipzig played host to the second "Nocturnal Culture Night" festival held at the scenic Kulturpark. Over the weekend, about 700 fans were treated to an intimate three day line-up featuring 22 bands including Dairy of Dreams, Zeraphine, Solitary Experiments, Garden of Delight amongst others and which included the European live debut of Deviant UK and for a weekend ticket price of 23 Euros, it certainly represented value for money. It also provided a chance to discover new bands that would not otherwise get to perform at a festival of this size.
Angela, Jo and I went to Stansted for the Ryanair flight to Altenburg, (my suitcase was lost and it went to Spain instead!) and we stayed in a hotel in Altenburg and commuted by a 15 minute train journey to reach Deutzen, as there were no hotels or guesthouses in Deutzen.Things didn't go as we'd planned and Friday was spent shopping for essentials for me as I'd only got what I'd travelled in, so when Friday evening came around, we went off to Altenburg station to travel to Deutzen and then a ten minute walk to the festival site, down a never-ending dirt track, it seems somebody had given us wrong directions! With grey clouds looming overhead, we thought we'd get a soaking, but fortunately it didn't turn to rain and once there we did some shopping in the market stalls, and waited for the first band on the small stage, Steinkind, who recently caused a stir at WGT by playing an unannounced gig on a petrol station forecourt! – see YouTube, for the footage!
Musically, these were Nitzer Ebb style minimal shouty EBM completely sung in German and they played a set of the best tracks from their recommended CD, "Vom Hier im Jetzt". The singer, appeared in shorts and white vest and during the performance, his vest came off and the shorts slipped further down from his waist and the two keyboarders removed their hooded tops to reveal pink girlie vests underneath! They drew a good crowd and their hit "Deutschland Brennt" was the highlight for many.
Afterwards, we bumped into Deviant UK who had just arrived after driving non-stop for the last 24 hours from the UK and we all retired to a table near the small stage and chatted whilst listening to the other bands playing, such as Golden Apes, who we didn't pay much attention to as Jo took a dislike to their name!
Menticide, were another old-school EBM band and kept the rivetheads happy with their set, which ended with a blistering version of Ministry's "Just One Fix", the first of many covers heard that weekend.
Headliners, were Stendal Blast, but as the temperature was dropping, we left early to catch the train back to Altenburg.
Saturday morning brought the good news my suitcase had been found, so once I'd got it, I could change my outfit at last and once done, off again by train to Deutzen, for the main day of the festival, though those clouds were still grey!
First was Mono Inc, who played what I would describe as "melodic dark rock", which was certainly well received for first band of the day and so with a place down at the front, camera in hand, on came Deviant UK!
As always, Jay & BJ played a flawless set of tracks from "Barbed Wire Star" and Jay threw many demonic poses and they even played their cover of Project Pitchfork's "Timekiller", which was warmly received and they'd won many new fans at the end of their set, eager to buy their CD and have it signed!
Afterwards, we missed some of the other bands on the small stage to go into the larger stage, which was now open with more stalls and we awaited the first band FAQ, a band I was not familiar with but I was impressed with their performance and visually their singer looks like Brian Molko and their music reminded me of Placebo and the current Apoptygma Berzerk sound and they were warmly received by the growing audience there.
Out came the umbrellas, as the rain came down, just as Absurd Minds took to the stage, these are a band I had wanted to see for sometime and they did not disappoint with their hits including "The Cycle", "Herzlos", "Deception" and a great cover of Nine Inch Nails, "Hurt".
Next up were Frozen Plasma and singer Felix was in fine mood, once slipping on stage and then to make it look like part of his act, proceeded to skid across the now very wet stage! They played their usual set, with "Warmongers" drawing a large cheer from the crowd, as well as live favourites, "Irony" and "Crossroads".
No pause in the rain and Solitary Experiments played what seemed like an over-long set, which to me wasn't as good as their performance at Dark City, Edinburgh, earlier this year. Most annoying was someone right in front of us in the photo-pit filming the whole show on his camcorder and he didn't move once, so some of my photos ended up with his head on them! Surprise of their show was the introduction of Supreme Court who came on stage for a brutal version of "Things that we forgot", their recent collaboration.
By now the rain was coming down heavy and it was time to shelter in the market stalls, as Sono were taking the stage. An odd choice of band for this festival, especially being so high on the billing too, their music, to my ears sounded like it was more suited to mainstream dance clubs, which was clearly evident in the medley of their hit, "2000 Guns", which blended into a cover of Adamski & Seal's "Killer".
Finally after a forty minute delay in setting up the stage for Diary of Dreams, by now, the rain had stopped, they appeared, with Adrian wearing his trademark trenchcoat (the weather certainly called for it), supported by his guitarist, Gaun:A and Diorama vocalist, Torben Wendt on keyboards. They played a well received set for about 75 minutes and we were treated to the new single "The Plague", which certainly impressed me on first listen. Other highlights were "The Curse", and "Traumtanzer" which had the crowd singing the chorus back to Adrian and the piano version of "Amok", which ended the show.
As we arrived Sunday, we walked through the "Mittelmarkt", a medieval village set up with people dressed in furs and drinking from horns, not to mention a wooden bathtub being filled with water if you wanted a bath!
We noticed that there were noticeably less people than for Saturday, so beer in hand, we sat at our usual table near the small stage to hear the bands. One band that caught our attention, were Gothika from Tokyo, their singer Andro, he wore a red floral kimono, which certainly added to the Visual Kei element of their show. They played fast SynthPop/Darkwave and drew a fair sized crowd for a band on so early. Afterwards, their keyboard player kept shoving one of their CD's under Angela's nose, I think he was hoping that she would buy one!
Next, were No Name Desire, a band whose CD I bought when on holiday in Prague last year. They played a fast aggressive set, with their sound reminiscent of Hocico or Suicide Commando. Afterwards, I spoke to their label manager, who told me about the emerging scene in Prague.
By this time, the main stage had opened, so we missed the remainder of the bands on the small stage and the first band, Portash, played an uninspired set of mid-paced synthpop, which didn't capture our attention.
Afterwards, the stage, was dressed in red armchairs and red shop mannequins for the next act, The Songs of Lemuria, which was a covers act, which should have been named as "Songs of Depeche Mode and everybody else", as they played, I think 4 DM covers, which were sung in a "lounge" style with female and male vocals with accompanying pianist and cellist, but nevertheless, it went down well with some elements of the crowd, though not my thing, personally.
Next, the smoke machine was bellowing out smoke before Garden of Delight had even took to the stage and as it was just getting dark, this added to their performance, which I most enjoyed as their ploughed through their back catalogue, playing tracks such as "Venus Rising", "Black Mass" and "Levitiation", though they didn't play what I was hoping for, "Stigmata".
Finally, Zeraphine closed the festival, with a great set which comprised of their hits, "Be My Rain", "Die Macht In Dir" and "Still", the band wished that they had played longer for the crowd, but only one encore was allowed due to a strict 10pm curfew, which left some fans disappointed and this drew the festival to an abrupt close.
Overall, getting to a festival in Germany works out cheaper than you would think, if booked far enough in advance and the range of bands far surpasses that of any other festivals in other countries and with this one making a return in 2008, it might be something for you to consider for next year.
INTERESTING SISTERS BITS / LINKS.
www.thesistersofmercy.com Official Band Site. Lists forthcoming Gigs / news on Album releases (that's a joke ...) + lots of other stuff.
Glasperlenspiel Magazine/Fanzine. Very interesting mag - last issue was mid '02. Seems to come out at irregular intervals. Well worth checking if you're a Sisters fan. Website ; www.gps.tsom.org E-Mail ; email@example.com Post ; GPS, PO Box 129, Aldershot, Hants, GU12 4FZ.
There is a Sisters Of Mercy Internet Webring - 'Dominion'. Brings you bang on as it happens info !! Contactable at ; firstname.lastname@example.orgThe Sisters Of Murphy are the premier Sisters Tribute band. See their Website at www.thesistersofmurphy.com