- <b>AMPHI FESTIVAL (Germany, Cologne). FULL REPORT</b> (17-7-2011) - The MetalList Webzine - metal music zine

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AMPHI FESTIVAL (Germany, Cologne). FULL REPORT (17-7-2011)


What do We know about Cologne. So it was ancient Roman town which was founded by Caesar Augustus friend Agrippa and it full name was The Cologne of Agrippina. At the centre of this wonderful city you can see ancient tower as well as Pretorium and remains of sewerage.

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Of course the most famous symbol of Cologne is Kolner Dom - masterpiece of neogothic, one of the tallest cathedrals in the world. Also you can see 12 Roman churches, some museums, drink finest beer and see one of the most beautiful German bridge. What else?! Latest years Cologne became popular center in connection with gothic culture. Central park of Cologne changed to the realm of synthpop, industrial, darkwave and gothic music as well as appropriate subcultures. Being the in this period is the unique possibility to enjoy both music and sights of historical city.

AMPHI festival 2011. Only look at the running order allowed us to consider that festival as enormous musical event. DEINE LAKAIEN, COVENANT, NITZER EBB, DREADFUL SHADOWS and many others during one event. So the sold out was guaranteed.

Some words about the area of AMPHI. At the center of the area there was a big market with clothes, boots, CDs, magazines, merchandise and so on. Moreover if fatigue prevailed on you there was a possibility to spend time on the beach only in 70 metres from the main stage.

There were three stages. The main stage was under the sky, several large tents partially rescued from the rain. The second stage was in huge hangar, it name was Staatenhaus. The third was Chamber concert hall.

When you visit such events you should remember that appearance of audience is not less interesting than musical performance. A lot of people gave free rein to their imagination. Medieval Costumes as well as Victorian style, steampunk and military, cyber industial and gothic etc. Most people willingly posed for the camera.

Cyber-industrial act [X]-RX were the openers of the fest as well as electro/industrial project Klangstabil. [X]-RX were replaced shortly by Staubkind with their alternative rock sound and gloomy songs. MIND.IN.A.BOX were the second band at Staatenhaus. When MELOTRON started their show The attendance of people had already been quite large. Their performance was especially positive, it was futurepop with true rock energy. The direct opposite to MELOTRON was under the roof. WINTERKäLTE gave some minutes of fear to noise fans.

Definitely one of the most anticipated sets by female part of crowd was ZERAPHINE performance. Generally Amphi festival 2011 included very rare and unique events - two of three Sven Friedrich's bands performed day by day. Second was DREADFUL SAHDOWS (second day) and the audience was fundamentally different, older, calmer... FROZEN PLASMA attracted huge number of people, it was strange but fact that next day during DIORAMA set the same number gathered there though FROSEN PLASMA was usually considered as side-project of Felix Marc of DIORAMA.

GRENDEL ans SAMSAS TRAUM performed almost simultaneously. Neither one not the other show was not among the most visited in two days. But the situation changed after 5 pm. TANZWUT performance was colourful and full of energy, Teufel was real demon on the stage, it could not be doubted. IN STRICT CONFIDENCE gave the graceful and imposing set at Staatenhaus, it was one of the most theatrical performance of the fest.

LEæTHER STRIP were one of pioneers for electo-industrial but this fame hadn't provided them big number of viewers while industrial rock set ща DIE KRUPPS was very successful.

Dark electro occupied the stage of Staatenhaus deep into the night. Perhaps two most influential acts of this extreme genre of electronic music shared the stage in darkness: SUICIDE COMMANDO and HOCICO. A lot of people didn't leave Staatenhaus during the time of both sets. Moreover during the HOCICO set was the moment when a lot of people arrived cause the programm of Main stage was finished.

So about the main stage. Headliners for the first day were Alexander Veljanov and Ernst Horn who were better known as DEINE LAKAIEN, unique and unrepeatable darkwave duo.

There are four variants of DEINE LAKAIEN performances. Common feature is only baritone of Alexander. First one included Ernst Horn with grand piano, computers, synthesizers etc. as well as violinist, cellist, back vocals… Second and third (they are most frequent) are performances as a duo: sometimes only musical instrument is acoustic grand piano, sometimes also there are synthesizers. Fourth: concert with symphonic orchestra.

They performed with the band. Their cellist and violinist played such utter love story, it was very theatrical and perfectly fit in the atmosphere of that show. The duo presented songs from the newest album “Indicator” as well as hits like “Love Me to the End”, “Over and Done” and “Dark Star”. Over all breathtaking voice of Alexander. So that was first day.

By the way some people preferred the stage at Theater, among other there was marvelous set by PERSEPHONE, neoclassic project of Sonja Kraushofer (L'Âme Immortelle).

Second day was opened by NDH band DER FLUCH. Set of ORDO ROSARIUS EQUILIBRIO was very atmospheric and solemn. One of the most famous neofolk projects approved their status and gave 40 minutes of splendid songs finishing with their main hit “Three is an Orgy, Four is Forever”. DREADFUL SHADOWS gave the way to DE/VISION. I was amazed with the amount of audience during the set of this synthpop duo.

Now about Staatenhaus heroes after ORE. DIORAMA had only 45 minutes but they coped. It was very short best of, full of energy and dance rhythms, with unrepeatable vocal of Torben. Gothic rock legends CLAN OF XYMOX impressed me the fact I can’t remind any other band with such respectable attitude to photo press. Whole 4 songs lighting was great and only after that when photo pit was empty lighting became usual for the band – dark and cloudy. 10 songs incl. the most famous Emily and Louise.

Next were AGONOISE (Main Stage) and IN THE NURSERY (Staatenhaus). Most people were scattered all over the territory of the festival. DAS ICH gave very strange performance but only because it was they goal as always. During their set it is normal if you fill yourself in nuthouse, they are masters of the atmosphere of madness.

Meanwhile the main stage was occupied by SALTATIO MORTIS. Their name means Danse Macabre or Dance of Death. Definitely they are now one of the most important acts among folk/medieval metal. Devoid of pathos they showed endless positive emotions and attracted the absolute majority of the festival’s visitors.

FEINDFLUG. White light, noise, drums, chaos and nothing more.

NITZER EBB were the penult band at the Main stage. Douglas MacCarthy was dressed like a hero of the film about super-agents. EBM veterans performed full program with the songs from all album, of course, the main focus was on the first album after 15 years of silence – Industrial Box which was released in 2010.

Mysterious, menacing and beautiful at the same time, aggressive perverts and lofty intellectuals KIRLIAN CAMERA continued the evening at Staatenhaus. Always unpredictable they played 11 great songs and one more as encore, it was their cover of “Comfortably Numb” from “The Wall” of PINK FLOYD.

SUBWAY TO SALLY was the band which was sung along by the whole audience. It was true performance of the folk band. They closed the day for the main stage. Another headliners were COVENANT at Staatenhaus. Blue color, smoke and impressive voice of Eskil ffor more than 80 minutes. That was the end.

These two days were unique. It was hard to believe that it was at the very center of big city. It was like travel to another World with its own rules and customs.

We would like to express a deep gratitude to the organizers of the festival and personally Elmar Herrmann for granted accreditations.


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