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2014-10-22 DE Essen - Turock

[Dajana] Yeah, THAT’s a package I call exciting! And I was really looking forward to this evening. First, because my last SECERECTS OF THE MOON show dates back quite some time, and second, because DARK FORTRESS have just released another stunning record its live qualities needed to be certified ;)

:: pics ::

[Dajana] With the last summer festivals whirling its dust over emptying fields the first autumn packages start their itineraries. You know, there is an endless coming and going especially in Oct/Nov with sometimes 4,5 shows around at the same day and you’re be spoilt for choice. So I had my fears regarding the number of attendees at the Turock. High quality bands don’t necessarily fill up a club. But yeah, enough music connoisseurs found their way into our second home ;)
[Psycho] I wouldn’t say that the club was well-filled. This package for sure had deserved more attention and guests.
[Dajana] Yes, of course, no doubt. I just compared the number of attendees with my fears ;)

[Dajana] However, Swiss band :: SCHAMMASCH :: kicks off their set on time but with minor sound problems that seemed to bother singer/bass player Chris. I didn’t know the band, just got a first glimpse a few days ago with the brand new Golden Light video circulating through the media. Well, SCHAMMASCH came into existence just 5 years ago with two records up their sleeve - the sophomore Contradiction was released in April 2014 - so rather a young band than a long-established one. And my first positive impression got outperformed by far. The music is magically intense. Occult. And creeps under your skin. I’m blown away!
[BRT] To let SCHAMMASCH do the opening part is quite unthankful. The music offers such kind of depth that requires patience from the listener. The Swiss guys master it all well but have too lengthy breaks between the songs. Triptykon fans should be pleased here, no doubt…
[Psycho] Well, that I see slightly different. It needs a bit more than endlessly long soundscapes to follow suit Triptykon successfully. It most of all needs the right atmosphere. It works well on CD but live there was too much played from tape. To me rather a mood killer. But how does one say: a band with potential. Or an issue for a cultivated listening pleasure back home…
Setlist: The Crown, The Inner Word, Golden Light

[Dajana] Early this year drummer T. Thelemnar announced his departure from the band after more than 12 years of fellowship and many a fan was wondering if that might be the end of :: SECRETS OF THE MOON :: Nope, it is not the end. Frontman sG got himself a new and, admittedly, quite an awesome drummer and is working on a new album. Live SOTM offered a mix of songs through the last three records, including the track Shepherd dedicated to the band’s former guitarist K.S.A., who was there tonight. All in all a much gruffer and darker performance than usual.
[BRT] I’m surely not an expert when it comes to SECRETS OF THE MOON. Their last show thrilled me and so I was looking forward for a new experience. And yes, their set was harsher, faster, highly dynamic and diversified. Went down well. Personally, I though liked the slower tracks a bit more.
[Psycho] Hm, focusing on the last both records you automatically get more slow parts, or did I mishear? But at the end it doesn’t matter as the highly skilled band around fronter sG impressively displayed how to transform atmospheric songs perfectly live on stage. The result: Goosebumps all over. And if you take the performance as a hint of the quality of the upcoming album, than I expect nothing less than a masterpiece! I’m much curious…
Setlist: Serpent Messiah, A Million Suns, Lucifer Speaks, Shepherd, Nyx, Carved In Stigmata Wounds

[Dajana] Two awesome bands and I definitely did not expect to see :: DARK FORTRESS :: even top them! WOW! What energy! Of course, DARK FORTRESS focused on the brand new album Venereal Dawn, whereas the title-track and the insane I Am The Jigsaw Of A Mad God drove me crazy. Especially latter track… what neck-breaking changes in speed! And all played without the tiniest failure. There the term “progressive” gets a complete new meaning. I think DARK FORTRESS would also excellently work without singer. I don’t want to imply that Morean is anything bad. No way! Much the opposite. But the music itself owns so much power and energy and dynamics and variety that it almost doesn’t need a singer. Incredible show! Fantastic evening!
[BRT] I have to admit, on CD I can’t do that much with DARK FORTRESS. They just don’t catch me, although they offer everything I actually like. Live, however, the guys are mighty. It works supreme. Entertaining set, intensive music, technically great and with a superb sound. Great finale. All three bands were just amazing. Such a great high quality package you don’t get that often.
[Psycho] I honestly was afraid that DARK FORTRESS would fall short. But I was taught a lesson, and this right from the beginning. With boisterous energy and an overwhelming delight in play they took this high bar and the audience by storm. Next to the instrumental class and the finely sophisticated compositions I also want to take up the cudgels for singer Morean. I couldn’t imagine any better singer for DARK FORTRESS. This guy really can do unbelievable things with his voice, what gives him the skills to be equal to the enormously intensive play of his mates. And he can set accents himself. Just stunning! And so was the entire set, despite of quite long tracks: an entertaining matter. It’s a great pleasure to see such kind of musicians “work” ;) A fantastic evening, and one of those rare occasions to see a tour package with exclusively interesting and worthwhile bands.
Setlist: Betrayal & Vengeance, Poltergeist, Venereal Dawn, The Valley, I Am The Jigsaw Of A Mad God, No Longer Human, Chrysalis, The Unflesh // When 1000 Crypts Awake, Baphomet


story © BRT, Psycho & Dajana • pics © Dajana & Dajana Winkel • Photography