2010-07-24-25 DE – Cologne - Tanzbrunnen
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VNV Nation - ASP - Combichrist - Mesh - Leaves’ Eyes - Rabia Sorda - Mono Inc. - Ext!ze

Eisbrecher - Letzte Instanz - Diary Of Dreams - Frontline Assembly - Samsas Traum - Coppelius - Blitzkid - Frank The Baptist - Escape With Romeo

Next morning saw us waking up way too early. Well, that’s the way it is when you sleep in foreign hotel beds I guess. Back to the festival area we got us coffee and cakes and again the photographers were the first ones to hook up talking nonsense and taking silly pics *laughs*

:: pics ::

[Leo] Sunday 12 o'clock, the second day of AMPHI FESTIVAL started and a few people already had found its way to the main stage when :: EXT!ZE :: opened the festival day. They did a powerful performance with boring stupid electro sounds and two female dancers who tried to run a professional dance performance. The set included six songs, inclusive the single releases Hellektrostar and Gothic Pussy. After 30 minutes the torture was finished with the song Boyz Love Girlz and EXT!ZE left the stage. Definitely not my kind of “music”! But there were lots of Cyber Goths who danced extensively.
Setlist: Poser, Hellectrostar, Electronic Revolt, Dead Bang, Gothic Pussy, Boyz Love Girlz

[Janine] I entered the Staatenhaus and the first things I saw and heard were partying people and an enthusiastic band. It was such a good atmosphere and so obvious that everybody there was in good mood, that I began to smile right at the beginning. The mood on stage was great too and :: ESCAPE WITH ROMEO :: gave everything, they really had fun - starting with jumping, clapping or presenting guitar duels. They also offered extensive guitar solos. The Staatenhaus was not as full as it was the first day at this early time. Maybe the people drunk too much and still slept :) Nevertheless, the mood was better than it was on some other bands, which filled the Staatenhaus completely.
[Dajana] This band truly touched me. I was downright blown away, did not expect such stirring and emotional music. Hauntingly beautiful I tell ya. Just knew the name of the band before but never had a listen so far. Damn… I should have! For me THE new discovery at this festival! Addiction? Yes! Addicted!
Setlist: Helicopters, Glitter On The Snow, Somebody, It's Loneliness, Anteroom, White Room, Addiction

[Leo] The next band on the main stage was :: MONO INC. :: who was welcomed with ample applause by the meanwhile well-filled area. They started their show powerful and the pushing rhythms and the harmonic voice of the singer pleased the crowd. In spite of the early hour the temper in the crowd was very well and the people were clapping hands and dancing along. Highlight of the show was a special version of The Passenger (Iggy Pop), which was performed mostly acoustic only by the singer with an acoustic guitar together with the crowd. Quickly the time went over and MONO INC. finished and left the stage after about 40 minutes.
Setlist: This Is The Day, Temple Of The Torn, Come Down, Just Because I Love You, Forgiven, The Passenger, Voices Of Doom, Get Some Sleep

[Dajana] :: FRANK THE BAPTIST :: was a band completely unknown to me and so I was quite excited to discover something new. This German-American band plays classic New Wave as known from the 80’s with these dazzling and mesmerizing guitar harmonics. Unfortunately there was nothing going on, the four-piece stood quite statically on stage, no spark was jumping over and the audience responded much reserved. I was pretty disappointed and quickly bored. I expected more. Oh, by the way, Carsten Klatte was playing guitars; last seen last night with Project Pitchfork ;) Seems like he filled in for Fez Wrecker.
Setlist: Letters To Earth, Sea Legs On A Train, Falling Stars, When The Sky, Beg Steal And Borrow, Signing Off, Glow, Scars Forever, King Of All Hearts, Silver Is Her Colour, On My Tongue, Ashes Ashes, If I Speak

[Leo] After the change over :: RABIA SORDA :: entered the stage and started their set powerful. Quickly the crowd was infected by the powerful electro sounds combined with the distinctive voice of singer Erk who also is known as a part of the famous Mexican band Hocico. The set was started with Monkeyland and included all in all nine songs. In spite of the announced rain the sun still was shining and the people enjoyed the show with heavy dancing. Erk was running across the stage like a devil delivering a very powerful performance that made anyone moving.
[Dajana] Yeah, first I though that RABIA SORDA does not differ that much from Hocico, it takes some time, but the music is different. Ok, the stage performance again reminds a lot of Erk’s main band, this dude does not stand still any second. And most time he was totally covered in smoke, thereby he looked so cute with his muddy face and body… ;)

[Dajana] :: BLITZKID :: means Horror Punk much in the veins of good ol’ Misfits. Hailing from Bluefield, Virginia, this trio pretty much rocked the stage. Especially bass-player Argyle Goolsby (funny nicks… hahaha) was downright freakin’ out, running, jumping and twisting his body while playing. The dudes sounded much heavier and more powerful here at this indoor location as I excepted after I had a listen to their stuff on CD. Singer TB Monstrosity several times mentioned that they will hopefully have out a new record by the end of the year and already presented a couple of brand new songs. Besides he introduced BLITZKID’s new drummer and told that this is his very first festival and his first time ever in Germany. The audience screamed and applauded enthusiastically. I guess he won’t forget this welcome ;)

[Leo] The next place in line was :: LEAVES’ EYES :: who entered the stage some minutes delayed because of some technical problems (and maybe that’s why also the setlist was shortened by two songs) and started their show. They did a dedicated performance underlined by a wonderful light show that came to effect since the sky went darker and darker by now. The crowd was pleased by the powerful performance. The set ran about 50 minutes presenting famous songs such as My Destiny or Elegy. The temper on and off stage was pretty good, even LEAVES’ EYES was one of the few non-Electronic bands on that stage during the day.
Setlist: Njord, My Destiny, Emerald Island, Take The Devil In Me, Ragnarok, Elegy, Froya’s Theme, Mot Fjerne Land

[Dajana] Last year :: COPPELIUS :: opened the festival on the mainstage, this year they moved to the middle of the second day and were allowed to play a longer set at Staatenhaus. Again butler Bastille spiffed and furbished the stage up before, rushing around with a feather duster and arranging the instruments. Finally, Bastille turned the radio on (for the intro) and the tail-coated and top-hat wearing gentlemen entered the stage, pulling faces and teasing the butler. Hell yeah, always a great scenery especially for the photographers ;) Anyway, COPPELIUS got in with the legendary track Transylvania from Iron Maidens self-titled debut record in 1980 and I was... nailed… on the pit's fence. What heaviness and power. Wow! The sound man has done a great job here. Incredible what these gentlemen make out of these classic instruments. With Der Handschuh and Diener 5er Herren COPPELIUS also presented two brand new tracks from the upcoming album Zinnober set to be released in October. And again I’m sorry, for myself, for leaving that early. But COPPELIUS will grace us again in November/December with a German club tour! Gentlemen, it’s always a pleasure :)
Setlist: Transylvania (Iron Maiden), Schöne Augen, Operation, Der Advokat, Der Handschuh, To My Creator, Murders In The Rue Morgue (Iron Maiden), Diener 5er Herren, Habgier, I Get Used To It // Time-Zeit

[Leo] After the next change over the stage was ready for one of my favorite bands. On stage for large screens were arranged which displayed nice video's and animations during the show. :: MESH :: entered the stage and right from the start the crowd was infected by the rousing charismatic performance. Like usual, Richard changed between keyboard and guitar and Marc played an additional guitar during several songs. Marc took some pictures with his pocket camera during the show and I'm sure these pictures will be part of video's or slide shows in future. During the song Who Says, MESH welcomed a special guest: Julia Beyer entered the stage and sang the song together with Marc, finishing afterwards with Everything I Made.
Setlist: If We Stay Here, Leave You Nothing, Only Better, Petrified, Crash, How Long, From This Height, Who Says, Everything I Made

[Janine] The performance of :: SAMSAS TRAUM :: in the early evening at the Staatenhaus turned to one of the highlights at this year's AMPHI FESTIVAL: after I saw Alex Kaschte last time two years ago at Blackfield Festival many people were very disappointed. But this time there was a firework of older and also latest songs. Only the "USA!" cries from the audience were unsuccessful. Musically, he probably pleased everybody in the hall with the songs he played. With songs like Ein Name im Kristall, Stromausfall im Herzspital, Für Immer and Heiliges Herz, he covered all his albums and gave a wide variety of songs. That was good for the fans on the one hand and on the other hand a good chance for people to get to know the band. I don’t like this kind of music but nevertheless, a great show!
Setlist: Ein Name in Kristall, Auf den Spiralnebeln, Für immer, Stromausfall im Herzspital, Allein unter Menschen, Endstation Eden, Heiliges Herz, Die Zärtlichkeit der V., Ein Fötus wie Du, Mr. Misanthropia, Kugel im Gesicht

[Leo] :: COMBICHRIST :: entered the stage and started their show just in time with All Pain Is Gone. Quickly the spirit went over to the crowd who was moving and dancing. Andy, the singer appeared in a new look and was going from side to side and performed the lyrics powerful, the live drums gave much power too to the performance. The set included 11 songs and was finished with What the Fuck Is Wrong With You? after about 60 minutes. Especially both drummers were offering an explosive and powerful show keeping the stage hand very busy with re-arranging the toms or collecting drum sticks. COMBICHRIST is surely a great live band and proved this once more with their show at AMPHI. Unfortunately during the show the rain was coming…
[Dajana] I wish I could have seen this show in its entirety. After my very first encounter at E-Tropolis Festival I’m a huge fan of their live performance. They truly leave burning stages… hehehe. I’m just sorry for the stage hand, but I bet, he gets most of the girls springing for beer ;)
Setlist: Intro, All Pain Is Gone, Today I Woke To The Rain Of Blood, Scarred, Electrohead, Without Emotions, Feed The Anger, Get Your Body Beat, Blut Royale, Fuck That Shit, Shut Up And Swallow, What The Fuck Is Wrong With You

[Janine] The reason why I stayed at the Staatenhaus comes from Canada and is known as :: FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY ::, arriving with a new album. I was expecting new songs such as Shifting Through The Lens, the catchy Angriff and the intense Hostage. And hey, here we go! In addition, they played classics like Millennium and Plasticity. That mixture created a nice set, but the show itself remains despite diligent drum inserts a bit pale. Bill Leeb seemed to be a bit tired and the light show was relatively bleak. The beamer show was pretty cool but the spot lights were totally shit. For me, who stood in the back, it was impossible to see the band members themselves. Not quite optimal, moreover, the drum sound, so the performance was only good but little spectacular. The Staatenhaus was extreme full, and I think many people, which don’t like their music were also there because of the rain outside. That was underlined by the fact that I was one of the less people in the back who danced. But I saw that the people in the front of the stage were all the more enthusiastic.
Setlist: I.E.D., Circuitry, Angriff, Resist, Hostage, Plasticity, Prophecy, Shifting Through The Lens, Millennium

[Leo] :: ASP :: entered the stage, greatly decorated with a big backdrop showing the black butterfly, with the usual live line up and started the show with Denn ich bin Dein Meister. It was still raining a little bit but despite of this, the area in front of the stage was filled up completely. The people enjoyed the show and followed willingly the animation of charismatic front man Asp. When ASP finished their set after about 60 minutes with Schwarzes Blut, the crowd strongly requested an encore which was given with Ich will brennen followed by a nice surprise: in memory of Peter Steele - the singer of Type O' Negative who died in April this year - ASP performed a cover version of I Don't Wanna Be Me before they finally left the stage.
Setlist: Denn ich bin der Meister, Kokon, Wer sonst?, Lykanthropie, Sing Child, Krabat, Satan, Und wir tanzten, Werben, Schwarzes Blut // Ich will brennen, I Don’t Wanna Be (Type O Negative cover)

[Janine] Meanwhile singer Adrian Hates of :: DIARY OF DREAMS :: has got many rocker poses in stock, he never sets himself in the middle of the action, but occurs almost humbly behind the music that does not fail on this evening to have effect. With Wahn!Sinn? it starts before the acclaimed hit The Wedding follows. The deeply sad She And Her Darkness touches and AmoK was played in a very beautiful, vibrant version. With the current single King Of Nowhere, the band finished the set and thanked politely handle for the enthusiastic audience response. It’s always a pleasure to be part of their intense live show. And worth to miss something like 20 minutes of VNV Nation. Obviously many people thought this way, because the Staatenhaus was full, although VNV began preparing their show and the main stage was already filled over and over with people. But after DIARY OF DREAMS we had to hurry up to see them, too :)
[Dajana] As for me, tonight was the first show to see DIARY OF DREAMS in their new outfit. And I have to admit, I absolutely loved it ;) Real drums, bass and guitars add a so much heavier note to the band’s music. Ok, probably nothing for sensitive souls (me’s a metal head, ya got it? ;)) The new bass player perfectly suits the band’s new attitude and it’s really great to see the band burning the stage with the (mostly female) fans screaming in front of it. If the new album turns out the way their shows are these days, I’m sure it will be a killer piece. But... I did sense out a certain rock star attitude? Oh, and what happened to the new keyboard player Leandra and who was the “new” guy instead?
Setlist: Wahn!Sinn?, The Wedding, MenschFeind, Kindrom, The Chain, She And Her Darkness, AmoK, Hypo)cripticK(al, Soulstripper, Traumtänzer, King Of Nowhere

[Leo] Sunday evening, time for the headliner and the stage was ready for :: VNV NATION :: It was still raining when VNV NATION entered the main stage, but people didn't care and enjoyed the show. Like usual Ronan performed the set powerfully and charismatic and did his jingles and jokes between the songs. He is surely a great entertainer who gets the people going wild. And hell, they did during this AMPHI show! The temper in the crowd was great and the people were dancing and singing along, screaming, jumping and clapping. The set included 15 songs starting with Tomorrow Never Comes after the intro Pro Victoria, followed by well-known songs from different periods of band history. After Nemesis they did only a very short break, the both keyboard players (this time Tom Lesczenski of [:SITD:] and Andre Winter) left the stage and like usual, Ronan and Mark performed Beloved in twos before Tom and Andre came back for the last song Perpetual. Marc and Ronan were standing in front of the audience and directing a big choir singing along even as the music already was fading. What a great final on the main stage!
Setlist: Pro Victoria, Tomorrow Never Comes, Testament, Genesis, Darkangel, Further, Sentinel, Chrome, Great Divide, Illusion, Standing, Honour 2003, Nemesis // Beloved, Perpetual

[Dajana] It was up to :: LETZTE INSTANZ :: to call out the final round at Staatenhaus, after the mainstage outside was left alone in the dark. The hall was still crowded and the fans celebrating the band on stage. LETZTE INSTANZ once again delivered an awesome and much powerful show, with its members performing as if there was no tomorrow. Singer Holly several times referred to the band’s new record, promising that the autumn will be Heilig, supported by a tour right after the release. The traditional stage diving finishing a LETZTE INSTANZ we actually missed. Never mind. Great show!
Setlist: Mea Culpa & Mein Engel, Flucht ins Glück, Dein Licht, Ohne Dich, Der Garten, Mein Gott, Schau in mein Gesicht, Finsternis, Komm nie zurück, Das Stimmlein, Mein Todestag, Wir sind allein // Rapunzel, Song 2

[Dajana] The last one cleans up and turns out the lights, so fronter Alexx “The Checker” told the audience when :: EISBRECHER :: entered the stage to finish this year’s edition of AMPHI FESTIVAL. This band cannot do it wrong, no matter when, where and how often they play. Performing for the fourth time, in a row at this festival, EISBRECHER still managed to get the crowd up and partying. The fan-base grew big and seemingly cannot get enough. Fans freak out when The Checker is around ;) Except for one song the setlist was the same from the last year, so it was easy for the fans to sing-along every song. Well, after 4 years they should know the lyrics… Hehe. Anyway, EISBRECHER made it to bring this festival to a glorious end at midnight! Let me guess… EISBRECHER is one of the bands playing the festival next year?
Setist: Eiszeit, Angst?, Willkommen im Nichts, Leider, Vergissmeinnicht, Schwarze Witwe, Die Engel, Heilig, This Is Deutsch // Amok, Miststück

So, that’s that. The sixth edition of AMPHI FESTIVAL came to an end. Upcoming rain was kept within limits and weather cooling down comfortably. We once again we had a stressy but great time and lotsa fun with the other photographers. Weird bunch of crazy heads I guess… *laughs* Let’s get back to the daily business…


stories © Dajana Winkel, Carsten Leopold & Janine Szakacs
photos © Dajana Winkel