Wave Gotik Treffen XX – Leipzig, Germany | 09.06

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20 years ago you wouldn’t imagine that one day Wave Gotik Treffen could become the biggest dark scene festival of the whole world, but hey… now it’s the crystal-clear reality. I believe it’s safe to say it’s one of the oldest and biggest festivals in Germany and in 2011 WGT celebrated its 20th run, its 20th anniversary many big festivals out there can only hope for. I was really proud to have a chance to be there and enjoy this unforgettable atmosphere once more.
 

WGT 2011 This Teddy bear is kind of horny :) Lady at the Victorian Picnic Waves Under Water Black Market Chthonic

 
What was very special about this year’s WGT is the first day, which was actually some kind of Grand Anniversary Night. The festival’s management had this cool idea to take the main stage and try to recapture the vibe of the very first WGT. They invited all the bands who played there 20 years ago (well, at least those who still could participate – DAS ICH, Oswald Henke‘s band replacing GOETHES ERBEN, SWEET WILLIAM and some others) and made a special “20 years After” gig the evening before the official festival started. Does that sound as promising as hell? :) That’s why when I heard WGT 2011 broke all the attendance records done before I wasn’t surprised. The whole festival was pure pleasure and fun, everything was perfectly organized and supported, the Dark Market and the Barbarian Village were generous with goods, food and drinks, the audience was marvelous and indescribable, the guards were appropriate and finally – extremely important! – the weather was simply very gentle. We all really couldn’t ask for more.

09.06 – The Grand Anniversary Show

It was held logically on the WGT’s main stage in Agra Halle, because no other stage could handle so many people in the audience. As I heard a lot later there was also a smaller anniversary gig in Moritzbastei club (with Torben Wendt and other well-known folks), but it was already too late to get there. I think it wasn’t mentioned in the official program and the information about the gig was spread in the Internet only, so it was not a big surprise I missed it. Well you can’t hit all the targets at WGT because you cannot be in a hundred places at the same time.
 

Das Ich Vic Anselmo with Das Ich Das Ich

 
The show was opened by DAS ICH, but the gig appeared to be only half-positive. Sure thing, every DAS ICH performance is a must-see-event, but this time the audience was slightly shocked by the message appearing on the big screen before the beginning: the singer Stefan Ackermann was very ill and couldn’t come to WGT. His band colleagues have visited him in the hospital and he was very sad he was going to miss the show, but still he wanted the band to go out and play. It led DAS ICH to a simple solution – they performed a special show with the guest singers, who were beautiful Vic Anselmo and also THE FAIR SEX frontman Myk Jung. They did a great job making the old DAS ICH anthems sound fresh and powerful enough to raise the roof and I hope all this energy went right to Stefan Ackermann to help him recover as quickly as possible. Get well Stefan!

After a short break the stage was taken by the gothic-rock veterans SWEET WILLIAM presenting a slightly psychedelic and mellow old-school rock. The band has been active since mid-80’s and their previous album was released just about a year ago. A lot of people enjoyed the performance, but the following act impressed me a lot more – it was an extremely energetic show of Oswald Henke‘s solo-project performing the old GOETHES ERBEN tunes! It was really a highlight of the evening for me! Herr Henke looked very happy and inspired, he ran across the stage like a torpedo, changing stage cloths and playing with various things like a king crown which was extracted by him from an old-looking chest standing on the stage. The fans got everything they came for, all the widely loved tracks from “Nichts bleibt wie es war” to “Das schwarze Wesen” and more.
 

Henke Sweet William Henke

 
AGE OF HEAVEN was the last band I saw that evening. It’s a local act from Leipzig and that gave them a fatty bonus, because the audience knew them well and cheered loudly. The band played the solid gothic-rock that slightly reminded me FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM. All in all they delivered a nice show, the music varied from classic old-goth to melancholic sounds with even very hard-sounding kind of industrial-metal songs in between. After they left the stage I felt I had enough impressions for the opening night and left slightly overdosed. I had four more WGT days waiting for me…

10.06 – 1st Day

 

WGT 2011 WGT 2011 WGT 2011

 
The beginning of the first day was already exciting enough for me to get up earlier – the legendary singer Sarah Jezebel Deva was going to hit the new festival stage in Halle 15. I had some troubles finding it, but had to acknowledge, that it was way better than the old Kohlrabizirkus hall (it was closed for some other event or reconstruction and WGT had to find another stage nearby). As I said it was a challenge to find Halle 15 at first. When I’m new at an area I always look around for a long line of people in make-up and black leather to relax and follow them – this method never fails. However I wasn’t lucky this time, it’s was early and when I finally got to the venue, there were just about 50-60 people there. The show started right in time and after a short symphonic introduction Sarah and the band appeared on the stage. The first song was smoking-hot “No Paragons Of Virtue”. Unfortunately the band couldn’t use the usual stage lighting, because the hall’s roof was transparent and all the epicness got pretty much wasted. At first I was slightly disappointed, because Sarah seemed kind of tired and probably she just wasn’t very happy to see such a small crowd at the stage. Her colleagues didn’t share her frustration though, especially the bass player who raised some major hell in the best 80’s hair metal manner. The set-list was a rich and tasty mix of Sarah‘s solo stuff and the songs from ANGTORIA‘s album “God Has A Plan For Us All”. What made me very pleased – starting from the second track (“I’m Calling”, one of my favourites) it looked like Sarah Jezebel Deva suddenly found her second wind and the rest of the show went smoothly and I must say with all honesty that I haven’t heard such a strong voice for a very long time, it was just unbelievable! The walls were shaking! On a personal note I’d like to add I really liked Sarah still performs the ANGTORIA stuff, it’s amazing and I hope for the second album someday.
 

Sarah Jezebel Deva Sarah Jezebel Deva Sarah Jezebel Deva

 
Did you know there’s heavy music in Taiwan? Me either, but here it is and its name’s CHTHONIC. These guys are already kind of famous in Europe (due to a tour they’ve done with ARCH ENEMY) delivering brutal melodic black metal with some strong influence of ethnic Taiwanese music. CHTHONIC supports the Democratic Progressive Party and this fact was the main reason some countries banned their gigs! WTF?! To their great luck the band has started to cross the borders and see the world. CHTHONIC appeared on the stage wearing make-up (not a usual European corpse-paint, but more ethnic one, with a lot of silver and gold) and the keyboards player wore a ninja mask. They treated the audience with an uncompromising, storming, brain-crashing metal tornado with fast guitars, epic keyboards and thunder-like bass supported by screaming vocals. I could almost close my eyes and imagine myself going back in time to attend a young CRADLE OF FILTH gig! The singer Freddy definitely knows what the word “frontman” means, he was as emotional and eye-catching as a real rock hero should be and you also couldn’t miss the beautiful bass-player Doris, this furious metal-valkyrie who surely had all the male attention in the hall. Unfortunately the traditional Taiwanese instruments were used only once during the show, probably because the set was quite short.
 

Chthonic Chthonic Chthonic

 
After the Taiwanese metallers left the stage I was going to see the UMBRA ET IMAGO comeback in the Agra Halle, but I still had a couple of free hours and decided to attend the annual Victorian Picnic in the Clara-Zetkin-Park. What is it all about?… Imagine hundreds of the most beautiful gothic people gathering on a big lawn and have a huge picnic attracting the most number of photographers you can ever imagine! Eye-candy you’d never miss :) To my regret I only had about 40 minutes, but I still managed to make a couple of nice pictures and meet some really magnificent people. Hope to see you there again in 2012!
 

Victorian Picnic / WGT 2011 Victorian Picnic / WGT 2011 Victorian Picnic / WGT 2011 Victorian Picnic / WGT 2011 Victorian Picnic / WGT 2011

 
My first UMBRA ET IMAGO show happened in 2005 and it was a real blast! Later I understood I could consider myself lucky because I could see the classic UMBRA with their probably best line-up ever. With a very strong new album “Memento Mori” and an outstanding erotic show this band just couldn’t leave me unimpressed. Well good old times… UMBRA ET IMAGO of 2011 was not the band I’ve seen in 2005, not anymore, but let’s not anticipate things. It was a little strange to see the band included into this year’s shedule, because it has performed a full set in 2010 here, but probably it was somehow related to this anniversary thing. First of all I didn’t see any elements of usual UMBRA ET IMAGO stage set and also – oh no – erotic show the band has been so famous for. I heard Mozart wanted the band to become more serious, but I hoped it would never happen. Fail. As I said there was no erotic show and the gorgeous Madeleine Le Roy was only a singer that evening. Mozart appeared on the stage in a frock-coat and a cocked hat. As always he was in his best mood and his voice sounded very convincing. The band was a lot more into music and just a little into show. Or should I say Mozart was a big show himself? At some point a violin player came to the stage and Mozart said she was “borrowed” from ASP. After the second song Mozart decided to make one of his classic speeches and started to trash UNHEILIG and the band’s effort to reach popularity as a mainstream band. I have to say I didn’t really like it, the joke was too old, enough said. All in all the show was fine and the band performed some really old stuff only die-hard fans know about and also some really new songs like the new single “Davon geht die Welt nicht unter”. It was good, but I still missed the old days when Mozart, Lutz Demmler and other guys were real rock stars and didn’t try to look serious or something. I’ve seen a lot of acts who lost everything trying to play this “we’re the serious musicians” trick.
 

Umbra et Imago Umbra et Imago Umbra et Imago

 
DIORAMA was the next act on my list and I was really looking forward to see them, because those amazing guys were my greatest discovery in 2010 when I’ve seen them at Nocturnal Culture Night festival in Deutzen. Knowing how good they were I wasn’t really surprised when I found the Werk II club 100% packed. I believe Torben Wendt‘s long-term collaboration with DIARY OF DREAMS has influenced his own band’s career heavily – I could see a lot of people in the audience wearing DODasp t-shirts :) The stage was decorated with two huge metal cubes and both the drummer Marquess and the keyboards-player Felix stood inside them. Sash was busy doing sorcery with his guitar and Torben… you should see him live if you want to get an impression! I’d call him a man of 1.000 faces, more specifically – the man of 1.000 facial expressions. Per minute. He’s very mobile, very impulsive, very emotional and really knows how to get his fans to the wild side. Between the songs Torben said that Marquess‘ father died 2 days ago and he was still capable to play here. The audience responded with some loud applause. I remembered such tracks like “Why”, “Home to Millions”, “Erase Me” and “Child Of Entertainment” being played and I must say it was an unbelievably great show!
 

DIORAMA DIORAMA DIORAMA

 
I’ve never been an ANATHEMA fan. It’s just not my kind of art, not the music I would listen to in my everyday life, and when I heard they released another album about a year ago I couldn’t care less. Still I couldn’t miss a chance to see such a legend, so I made this performance my last stop on the 1st WGT day. Halle 15 was 100% full! I could hardly make my way to the photopit and even breathing was a tricky task – there were simply too many people inside! I was kind of hoping ANATHEMA would perform their old stuff from those blessed times when they played doom metal, nevertheless it looked like Vincent Cavanagh and Co have decided to erase the past from their memory and live for today. The first four songs they played that evening were actually the first four tracks from their actual album “We’re Here Because We’re Here”: “Thin Air”, “Summernight Horizon”, “Dreaming Light” and “Everything”. Later I found out the whole set-list consisted mainly from the songs from “We’re Here…”, “Hindsight” (2009) and “A Natural Disaster” (2003). Nothing from the first albums was played, like there was another ANATHEMA in 90’s and now it’s dead and gone. Musically they sounded pretty solid and impressive, Vincent‘s voice was very emotional beyond any limits, sometimes he looked like he was going to cry. As I said I’m not a progressive rock fan, but still I’ve seen hundreds of people in the first rows literally dreaming away as they were listening to ANATHEMA‘s set. They were under hypnosis or in trance. ANATHEMA left the stage promising to come back again soon and stating that the audience at WGT was the best-looking one they’ve ever played for. No question :)
 

ANATHEMA ANATHEMA ANATHEMA

 

11.06 – 2nd Day

 

WGT 2011 WGT 2011 WGT 2011

 
What I love about WGT is the fact I don’t need to wake up at 8 AM to be somewhere in time. Usually the first acts hit the stages after 14 PM and you have a lot of time in your pocket to sleep well. However it doesn’t mean I would spend the whole morning in my bed, because being a photographer at WGT makes you use all the time you have to run across the city and hunt for the cool-looking people. So I’ve done in 2010, but this year I decided I’d better relax in the Barbarin Village, have some nice food and beer (they usually have my favourite beer they call Teufelsbier – I just cannot resist it), listen to folk bands, meet some of my friends or something… And it was a miracle, because the more relaxed I was the more great-looking people I saw and the better pictures I had. Sometimes you don’t have to run from stage to stage making thousands of shots and actually losing all the fun to gain the good results. From now on I promise to start all of my WGT days the same way – in the Barbarian Village, the most relaxed and pleasant place in this part of our planet. Amen.
 

People at the Barbarian Village / WGT 2011 People at the Barbarian Village / WGT 2011 People at the Barbarian Village / WGT 2011 People at the Barbarian Village / WGT 2011 People at the Barbarian Village / WGT 2011

 
The first stop for the day was the signing session of Monica Richards, a person I really admire. She’s mainly known as the lead singer of the American legend FAITH AND THE MUSE, but this time she was here as a solo artist and had a signing session in the local Cinestar. I’ve actually shot FAITH AND THE MUSE at the previous WGT, so I printed one of my favourite pictures from that performace to get it signed by Monica and I didn’t forget to make another copy for her. She and her musicians appeared right in time and were abolutely lovely and sweet to all those few people who came to see them. Monica was very friendly, she signed my picture, thanked me for her copy and looked absolutely happy to be there. What kind of made me down was the fact that only about 15 fans came to the Cinestar lobby and it felt not quite right for me… CINEMA STRANGE had a signing session before her and they had about 300 wild fans in line. I was very sorry for this world who didn’t care enough to be there for Monica Richards, because she’s worth a lot more attention. I hope Monica wasn’t very sad about this, because I and hopefully all other people there had a real good time!
 

Monica Richards Monica Richards Monica Richards Monica Richards

 
Halle 15 again and this time I was there to bring some metal into my life :) A well-known Norwegian viking-metal band HELHEIM gave a perfect and highly energetic start to this day. The band has been existed since 1992 and is very respected in the certain circles now. They just released their new album “Hei?ind?mr ok m?tgangr” and this show was a solid chance for HELHEIM to support it and remind the German fans who’s the boss. The gig was really impressive, all four members wore the chain armours and looked like they just came from “Lord Of The Rings” movie. They were so brutal, heavy and courageous, you just couldn’t help yourself imaging them with the swords instead of guitars. Unfortunately I can’t tell you anything about the set-list, but if you’re into viking-metal, you should check them out, they totally worth your attention.
 

HELHEIM HELHEIM HELHEIM

 
Much water has flowed under the bridge since I’ve seen DORNENREICH live last time. I believe the first time it was during their accoustic tour in 2008. I got there just by accident, but in 5 minutes I was thinking “Oh my, how could I miss that?!” The band was very unusual for my taste – I’d describe it as black metal meets folk metal meets nodoby knows what. You’d probably love them or hate them at first sight and for me it’s a decent sign of the true art. This is DORNENREICH, a band you wouldn’t mix up with any other band. Back in 1996 they’ve played pretty obvious and a little bit epic black metal, but now it’s rather ambient with folk elements and sometimes some really heavy guitar riffs. There are just two guys on the stage – the acoustic/electric guitar player and singer Eviga and Inve who plays violin – and if you think just two men are not enough to play something really magnificent and bombastic, you’re deadly wrong! It’s amazing to watch how Eviga and Inve make the audience thrill. Playing about 50% songs unplugged they usually can easily reach the emotional top and that is extremely hard even for the bands with large line-up and like 3 guitar players! The performance was split into a quick 100% acoustic set with “Freitanz” und “Meer” (Eviga used some kind of a tambourine fastened on his leg) and then went right to much heavier stuff when Eviga changed his acoustic guitar to an electric one. Unfortunately the sound turned really bad at this point. Don’t get me wrong, the band was awesome and they really tried to play a terrific concert, too bad someone let a deaf guy mix the show… The set-list was also pretty good: we got all the well-known tracks like “Jagd” and “Der Hexe n?chtlich’ Ritt” and also two tracks from the new album “Flammentriebe”: “Flammenmensch” and “Erst Deine Tr?ne l?scht den Brand”. All in all that could be the best show of the evening if there were no sound problems. Kudos to the band!
 

DORNENREICH DORNENREICH DORNENREICH DORNENREICH DORNENREICH

 
There’s a funny thing about LAKE OF TEARS and TIAMAT that follows me again and again. I’ve already seen LAKE OF TEARS and TIAMAT two times – both times at WGT and both times TIAMAT plaied after LAKE OF TEARS :) Is that accidental or what? Anyway this time LAKE OF TEARS and TIAMAT played one after another on the same stage again, that’s what I call consistency. LAKE OF TEARS came out first. The band just released a new album named “Illwill” and this show was a part of the tour. Well I can’t call myself a fan, though I do like “Forever Autumn” and some selected songs from other releases, but I always thought LAKE OF TEARS were slightly boring live. They’ve always delivered a standard-level metal performance without something that could really excite me, but this time I believe was the best show I’ve ever seen from them in years! Daniel Brennare sang really well this time and the guitar player Magnus Sahlgren was clearly in some kind of a rock star mood and looked and played fantastic. That was obvious I saw them refreshed (a lot!) and they looked younger and… happier. LAKE OF TEARS played 13 songs in total and five of them were taken from the new album. The audience took them with much enthusiasm, especially “U.N.S.A.N.E.” and “House Of The Setting Sun”. The old fans were treated with the classic tracks like “Raven Land”, “So Fell Autumn Rain” and even “Demon You/Lily Anne” (wow, my all-time favourite!). The band has been never in a better shape (as far as I’m concerned) and I enjoyed every bit of it.
 

LAKE OF TEARS LAKE OF TEARS LAKE OF TEARS LAKE OF TEARS LAKE OF TEARS

 
TIAMAT, the godfathers of gothic metal, is a frequent guest at WGT, the band plays here every two years as a headliner and the house is always packed, I think it speaks for itself, right? Johan Edlund and Co haven’t realeased anything new for already about 3 years, but who cares? It’s TIAMAT! “Fireflower” was the first song of the set and… then an amplifier broke down. This made the whole band just wait about five minutes, but as soon as the amp was fixed the rest of the show went smoothly. Such everybody’s favorites like “Cain” and “Brighter Than Sun” were played and you could clearly see how much Johan enjoyed the crowd’s reaction, he was totally into it. The more love-metal-oriented song “Vote for Love” was performed and then they turned to some more serious stuff like “Until The Hellhounds Sleep Again”, “The Ar” (I was waiting impatiently for the “Wildhoney” stuff) and “Cold Seed”. “Sleeping Beauty” (with the guest growling by some guy I don’t know) and the unbeliavable anthem “Gaia” were saved for the encores. That was a perfect set of one of the most noticeable dark scene’s bands and a perfect end of another festival day.
 

TIAMAT TIAMAT TIAMAT TIAMAT TIAMAT

 

12.06 – 3rd Day

 

WGT 2011 WGT 2011 WGT 2011

 
The midday sun found me in Heidnisches Dorf (Barbarian village), the atmosphere was relaxed and joyful, people just woke up and tried to open their eyes while having a light breakfest. It’s especially great to be there because it’s almost never silent and another folk band always tries to entertain you. They play on one of the stages (there are several small ones there) one after another and some of them performed even two or three times a day! Speaking about entertainment there was a barbarian fight on a field, but I missed it. Again – WGT is an event where you just can’t catch everything’s going on. Sometimes your choice is unbelievably painful, but with time you learn to make it faster and easier, I mean on your 3rd or 4th WGT you become an expert in making the arrow-quick choices :) Be quick or die in doubts – enough said. Going back to the Barbarian Village I’d like to add at some point I caught such well-known folkers like VROUDENSPIL, THE MOON AND THE NIGHTSPIRIT and also EVIAMARA, a very lyrical, athmosperic and beautiful band. Happy dance melodies or serious and epic medieval music – any folk stuff is appreciated here. I’ve seen some people who’ve spent the whole day there, just dancing, lying on the grass, listening to the music, drinking and then bursting into dance again. Needless to say it’s also a paradise for the children!
 

Eviamara Los Dilettantos Vroudenspil Eviamara Wolfenmond The Moon And The Nightspirit

 
I didn’t want to leave the Village this morning (my legs were buzzing from previous 3 days), but but a friend of mine told me I should come to see WAVES UNDER WATER in Halle 15. Then he sent me a link to their song “Still Here” on YouTube and I found it excellent! So I decided to skip some morning plans (Teufelsbier?) to see these guys instead. WAVES UNDER WATER is a dark wave band from Sweden and their music appeared to be a gust of fresh wind for me. This music gives a sense of something old-fashioned, but still it’s very fresh in many senses. So many bands try to write their music in a kind of the same style, but don’t get even 10% of WAVES UNDER WATER’s potential. I couldn’t call the Angelica Segerb?ck‘s voice strong, but it feels… simple right. The band delivers really good melodies (which is rare…) and some cool steam-punk aesthetics. They already have 2 albums under the belt and the last one – “All Of Your Light” – was released in 2011.

Halle 15 was half-way full and WAVES UNDER WATER could enjoy a slightly bigger crowd than any other opening band on the previous days had. The stage was nice decorated, the guitarist Johan Sv?rdshammar and the keyboards player Ursula Ewrelius stood on two big platforms with the very steam-punk copper sea waves on them. In between the platforms you could see a lady with a barrel organ (she played the intro) and I’m not really sure if it was a working instrument and not just a cool accessory. After a short intro the singer Angelica Segerb?ck appeared on the stage and started “Sinking Deep”. The set-list consisted from a lot of songs from the current album and a couple of tracks from the first release “Serpents And The Tree”. Everything would be very nice if there were no technical and probably personal problems… You see all the band members looked kind of confused or even scared, probably being not confident enough. The technical problems started from the first song and got even worse during the second one when Johan‘s guitar didn’t want to sound properly and it caused some terrible squeals. Later I was told it was the very first WAVES UNDER WATER‘s gig for such a big audience and if so it would be totally understandable for the guys to be very nervous. Appart from those problems the gig was pretty impressive and I can really recommend you to buy their studio albums, because they are simply amazing.
 

WAVES UNDER WATER WAVES UNDER WATER WAVES UNDER WATER WAVES UNDER WATER WAVES UNDER WATER

 
Unfortunately I had not enough time to enjoy the full performance of TROBAR DE MORTE in Centraltheater, but I still wanted to make a couple of pictures and check the Centraltheater, because it was a whole new venue for me. TROBAR DE MORTE is a Spanish medieval/neofolk band I liked so much at WGT two years ago. All I remembered clear enough was an outstanding Lady Morte‘s voice and I was eager to hear it again. The hall appeared to be a very conservative place, but the guards and employees were very friendly with such an unusual-looking crowd like gothic people even though they were abviously not used to see them here. All the performances were held in a small and refined hall with a big stage probably suitable for an average choir. TROBAR DE MORTE already started when I came, it was rather a chamber performance, because all the audience sat quietly in the cofortable chairs and clapped between the songs only. Obviously nobody sang along or cheered. Lady Morte was there in the front singing brilliantly as always and sometimes playing the flute. There were also Marta who played violin and took all the solos, Fernando with an acoustic guitars, Jose Luis Fr?as on various wind instruments and Armand sitting at the percussion. Unfortunately I couldn’t stay longer, I just heard a couple of songs, made some shots and ran to the Moritzbastei club where I hoped to catch a electro-miracle from Finland BEATI MORTUI.
 

TROBAR DE MORTE TROBAR DE MORTE TROBAR DE MORTE TROBAR DE MORTE TROBAR DE MORTE

 
Moritzbastei has been always a place with the cult-status for whose who loves various electronical stuff, because so many interesting new or not widely known electronical bands at WGT play usually here. Unfortunately this time it was the same problem in the club as always – almost no lighting. Sometimes you could barely see the band you came for and of course it leaves absolutely no chance for the photographers. Well anyway somebody told me I’d be a fool not to see BEATI MORTUI and I had no choice but to come. As I said BEATI MORTUI is an electro/industrial band from Helsinki, Finland and it has been founded back in 2005. As for today they have two releases and the last one named “Let The Funeral Begin” (2010) received a lot of positive responses in the European press. It wasn’t their debute at WGT, ’cause the band has already performed here in Leipzig in 2008. The audience cheered them with a storm of applause! The set-list consisted mainly from the songs from the new release. The singer Maria was dressed in a long black coat, had a top hat on and look very dark and athmospheric. I’m afraid it was hard to fully enjoy the gig, because the stage wasn’t illuminated and the drummer Sami was the only band member I could actually see. I don’t think it was a problem for the fans, but when you see a band for the very first time you probably want to… well… actually see it :) No good luck for me this time, but the music was great though.
 

BEATI MORTUI BEATI MORTUI BEATI MORTUI

 
The British post-punk/new-wave heroes KILLING JOKE were one of the headliners in Agra Halle that day and that was a well-deserved honour, because this formation is a pure living and breathing legend of this scene. More than this – they are the active legend, the band has just released a new album “Absolute Dissent” in 2011! The hall was 100% full and the crowd was blowing of impatience, so when KILLING JOKE finally hit the stage it sounded like a bomb exploded! The guys looked fantastic and you couldn’t tell they were actually quite old, because there are not so many young and hungry bands sounding and making a show like this out there. Jaz Coleman wore a camouflage coverall, he had some red and black make-up on his face and sometimes I had some sort of d?j? vu, because he really looked like an Alice Cooper‘s clone from 80’s :) The show was a real “best of” and I think everybody got what they came for, because KILLING JOKE played it all: starting from the old stuff like “Love Like Blood” or “The Wait” and finishing with the recent tracks like “This World Hell”, “Ghosts of Ladbroke Grove” and “The Great Cull”. I’m not really a fan, but I must say the show was spectacular and I didn’t hear any other opinions.
 

KILLING JOKE KILLING JOKE KILLING JOKE KILLING JOKE KILLING JOKE

 
FIELDS OF NEPHILIM was the main reason I decided to end the day in Agra. I’ve never seen them before and really have never listened to their music carefully enough. May be there’s a strange cockroach in my head, but I believe it’s always better to check the new bands live. At least that’s the best way for me. And FIELDS OF NEPHILIM is an act you just cannot miss if you dig into the gothic scene, I had been always told “You should listen to it!”, so I was there for my first shot. They band was formed in unbelievable 1983, then fell to pieces in 1991 and then reunited in 2005 to record one single album “Mourning Sun” and then just play a show or two here and there, usually at some really big festivals like M’era Luna, Tuska and yes, WGT. One of the most influential bands in the dark sub-culture appeared on the stage in their classic look – they have an interesting image of some kind of a steam-punk Western movie heroes. In the beginning there was a long instrumental composition “Shroud” and all the musicians were there on the stage in dark and smoke except for the singer Carl McCoy. Then he suddently appeared in the front to start “Straight To The Light”. Many people say the sound was awful and unfortunately I must agree with them, it was very indistinct and I could hardly hear the melody behind all that noise. I don’t think the band was to blame and I really hope the engineers could fix the problem till the concert’s end, because I was extremely tired and just couldn’t survive through one more hour. FIELDS OF NEPHILIM looked and sounded very professional and solid and I really wanted to check them out, but it looked like it was not the best moment to have such an experience. Hopefully I’ll get another chance to see them some day.
 

FIELDS OF NEPHILIM FIELDS OF NEPHILIM FIELDS OF NEPHILIM FIELDS OF NEPHILIM FIELDS OF NEPHILIM

 

13.06 – 4th Day

 

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The last festival’s day is always the hardest one, your legs shake, your eyes are not ready to open till 12 AM and your willpower is ready to give in. To my great relief there were not too many acts in my plan for that day and almost all the bands I wanted to see were sheduled to play in Agra Halle. It’s always like that, when another WGT comes you’re goddamn Flash who’s ready to fly around the planet like thousand times, but on the final day you barely have power to wake up :) Anyway I entered the hall right in time to see the young band from Spain called NORTHLAND coming up the stage.
 

WGT 2011 WGT 2011 WGT 2011

 
I actually was happy I caught them, ’cause it’s nice to know someone plays folk/death metal in Spain! Viking stuff could be easily expected from a band from Germany, Norway or Sweden, but it looks like Spain has also something to show. NORTHLAND has been founded in 2004 and got its first contract in 2009 to realease the first album in 2010. This self-titled CD got some very positive feedback


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