<< archive


2011-05-27 DE – Berlin - Festsaal Kreuzberg

Having installed a new concept and festival known as DOOM OVER LEIPZIG, organizers felt approved and exported a smaller, one-day-version to Berlin, Germany, dubbed, as you might guess, DOOM OVER BERLIN ;) Reviews have been great, much more the six bands confirmed for the Berlin edition made sure to get me there ;) Doom alone might be little misleading, all six bands can optionally put in all kind of drawers from Doom, Post-whatever, Instrumental, Experimental, Drone, Psychedelic and Hardcore - boundaries are blurred…
As for me it was once again sort of an expedition. From the first three bands I have not heard anything before; the last three bands I know, but live on stage I have only seen GORILLA MONSOON so far. Ok, here we go, let’s take the ride. Off to Berlin…

:: pics ::

The Festsaal makes noise in the heart of Kreuzberg, one of Berlin’s trendy neighborhood and alternative counterculture district. It’s a really nice club, with a balcony around, good atmosphere and hosting approx. 500 people. I’d say more than 200 fans attended tonight’s event, although around a third probably was always outside in the club’s own beer garden. Well, it was a mild evening… The SO36 club is around the corner, the C-Club not far away… generally it’s such a lively and sizzling area, crazy. Nobody’s sleeping over the weekend I bet *laughs* I remember last year’s Friction Fest, another district but same ecstatic, wild and crazy atmosphere. Love it! Maybe I should relocate?

However, I was late, kinda overslept and had to taste the full weekend traffics on the axis of evil. But, surprise, surprise… found parking in front of my hostel, refreshed and walked to the club. The DOOM OVER BERLIN festival was likewise gracious and got delayed exactly the same half hour I was too late. Coolness :)

With the first tones of Dutch’s own :: TONER LOW :: I’m ready and in front of stage. As already mentioned I didn’t hear of them before but was downright mesmerized from the first minute on. All hail to Electric Wizard, but hey, TONER LOW have the heavier monster riffing. Incredible, how intensive and dense guitar and bass walls pile up, with instruments low-tuned ad nauseam. Additional spacy drone sound samples and a psychedelic visualization on the screen behind as only source of light are pure hypnosis. I just missed something to smoke… Awesome experience! I strongly recommend: TONER LOWII Go and check it out! :)

So, now a beer was needed and a look around. I tried to send messages to a friend and eventually killed my mobile. I truly hate these stupid pieces. Next up is :: KASAN :: its members, at least guitarist Eldar Fano, are the organizers of this festival. The Leipzig-based band plays instrumental Post-whatever/Rock with various influences. KASAN calm down, walk almost Ambient-like paths to let go, to dream away. Founded back in 2007 KASAN have released an EP in 2009 entitled Soma and are now working on a full-length. This band worked like a chillout zone between Toner Low and following Rorcal. Cleverly arranged ;)

Afterwards :: RORCAL :: not only shook the foundation of this club, with all (musical) means they generally drag and wrench on all aspects of human existence. Illuminated by four candles and 2 stroboscopes RORCAL close in with ultra brutal sounds, celebrating creepiness between Doom, Core and Drone, opening deepest and blackest abysses of mankind. I thought it cannot go any darker and more brutal… later this evening I was taught a lesson. As for now, and just for your private apocalypse, suffering and tormented souls might pick the band’s fifth record, a 70 minutes running one-song-monolith entitled Heliogabalus. Warmly recommended. As for me, another haunting discovery.

Now I get into known fields. At least musically. Dresden’s own :: GORILLA MONSOON :: are one of my faves and I have seen them performing live several times. Once again I take my hat off to the organizers for their selection of bands and running order. A few bands in one row like Rorcal or Celeste and I would have jumped from the next available bridge or tower building *laughs*
First thing that catches my eyes is that GORILLA MONSOONs singer Jack Sabbath lost his hair, except for a little 0.5 mm and thus hardly visible stripe in the middle. And there is a new guitarist named K.K., replacing Phil, who left in February. I was hoping for a new song and got one, a yet untitled one. But I’m not sure, better said I can’t remember anymore, if it was the one I already got to hear during last year’s tour with Disbelief. However, they did not play Extermination Hammer, did they ever? *grrr* And generally speaking this set was way too short! No merch either. Nevertheless, if you know GORILLA MONSOON, you know what you get live on stage: an asskicking, pure rock’n’roll exuding hell of a show! That one-of-a-kind show you won’t forget. Just amazing.
Apropos… another lesson I got taught by the dude in the hostel hours later: GORILLA MONSOON (Bob Marella) was a wrestling star and play-by-play announcer. Didn’t know that before… ;)
Setlist: Intro, Law'n'Order, Damage King, 50 $ Whore, (new song), Death Revolution, My Way, Codeine Commander, Born To Lose

Evil, very, very evil and blacker than black = :: CELESTE :: I know their records but never have seen them playing live so far. But I was told that their shows are pretty much the most extreme in the scene. Ok. And yes, just to resort what a friend said: CELESTE is pure hate! Is pure pain and deepest abyss. As for that it had to be pitch-black around and it took a while till all lights and even the projector was switched off. The French tormentors only had red headlights to find their pedals and one stroboscope. You can’t do it any more intensive. A show like a claustrophobic nightmare. Stupidly, stupidly the bass’ E-string was torn after the first song. So… lights on again… and hectic rush. Seems like bass player Tonio did not have any strings to replace. They called for Bruno, Rorcal’s bass player, but he is anywhere else partying and needs to be found first *lol* Anyway, this unfortunate break takes 20 minutes and more and really kills everything regarding atmosphere. And CELESTE cannot build it up again afterwards. Really, too bad. Means in reverse: I have to see them again ;)

Time passes by and with the running order already announcing the end of the festival headliner :: DIRGE :: just get upon stage. I love their music; love their records and they are the main reason to attend this festival at all. They had a little tour prior the festival and just played in Germany for the very first time. Equipment was completely changed, that took even more time since DIRGE have a lot stuff to connect. The projector, unplugged by Celeste before, does not work properly anymore, so visualizations fail. DIRGE have just released a brand new album entitled Elysian Magnetic Fields they presented live, playing 5 of its 8 songs. Hey, that means DIRGE just played for 45 minutes! As a headliner show??? Way too short. Of course!
Generally I have to say also live DIRGE bear a striking similarity to Neurosis. Just extended by the so often quoted certain je ne sais quoi especially French bands own. Yes, it was an outstanding show, at least for me, but same here: I have to see them again!
Setlist: Morphée Rouge, Falling, Obsidian, Elysian Magnetic Fields, Cocoon

In deepest night the first DOOM OVER BERLIN comes to an end. I swap money for CDs and roam the streets of Kreuzberg afterwards. There is still so much going on there, as if the night has just begun. I’m hungry like a wolf and once again despair of my mobile. I see my plans for Saturday ending up in smoke… Back to the hostel I’m still totally hyper and restless, talk to the people, abuse computers and then adjourn to my “Austrian” room (allover red-white-red painted). Sleeping? No way *laughs* I think at 6am things calm down and get quiet here…
Ok, let’s see what the organizers will reveal for this year’s DOOM OVER LEIPZIG edition. And… it looks like there will be another DOOM OVER BERLIN festival next year :) Yes, please do so!
Oh, and what about a DOOM OVER Muenster, Bochum, Essen, Cologne… etc. version??? I WANT!


story & pics © Dajana