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introFZW - Freizeitzentrum West, Dortmund, Germany
3rd April 2013
Selig - Magma Tour 2013

Hamburg based Rock band SELIG was founded in 1992. In the 20th year of its existence, they now delivered with ‘Magma’ an album being lyrically very clever and ironic at the same time - it is a modern, fresh and vital album, meeting the perfectly the spirit of the times and at the same time it is an angry but also introspective monster. Somehow, we are in the period of “post-reunion” in the SELIG history. Now, the German rockers are presenting the new album to the public. SELIG is Jan Plewka (vocals), Christian Neander (guitar), Leo Schmidthals (bass), Stephan –“Stoppel” Eggert (drums) and Malte Neumann (keyboards). http://www.selig.eu / https://www.facebook.com/seligmusik

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Music & Performance
According to singer Jan Plewka it must have been a 17th February when SELIG visited Dortmund for the last time since this day is birthday of guitarist and founding member Christian Neander – and this birthday celebration in Dortmund was something Plewka remembered. Well, Neander is from Dortmund and so, he had a home play at the well filled FZW this day. The front man seemed to be a bit surprised that the band was not playing in front of a half empty hall since at the same time, the local football team, Borussia Dortmund, was playing their Champions League match against Malaga. But well, the concert date was set much earlier than the match, which was not even a home game for the football club. In fact, SELIG were much more interesting on that evening than the game and sweetened the evening with fantastic live music.

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As usually, the quintet went without a support band to hear up the mood. Instead, SELIG started at prime time 20:15 with the opener of the newly released album ‘Magma‘, out in February 2013. ‘Ich lüge nie’ (I never lie), Jan insisted, and very soon, he had the audience already on his side. In the back, horizontal mounted light elements took care for the appropriate illumination of the scene before the stage was tinted into purple light for the calmer ‘Sie scheint’ (She seems). After those two songs from the latest SELIG output, which even made it to position 4 in the German Charts, the Dortmund audience was rewarded with a first highlight of the evening, ‘Schau Schau’ from the reunion long-player ‘Und endlich unendlich’. Of course, the song was sang along loudly and afterwards followed some really old stuff with ‘Arsch einer Göttin’ (Butt of a Goddess) from the 1995 album ‘Hier’, accompanied with lots of guitar fiddling and heavy dancing of Jan.

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For crisp ‘Love and Peace’, the man in the keys, Malte Neumann, was grabbing a megaphone. Convulsive light flashes accompanied ‘Danke’ with its typical SELIG sound after Plewka demanded from the audience “Put your energy together”. From time to time, his announcements were a bit senseless, but this is also part of a gig if this band. A breeze of melancholy was lying upon the audience slightly later with ‘Wenn ich an dich denke’ (When I think of you). The audience happily followed the command to clap along. Afterwards, it was time for another classic, out of the second album, the band played ‘Ist es wichtig?’. The track was received by the audience, which btw probably also sang along 18 years ago, with enthusiasm. Malte was changing over to some percussions and Jan was grabbing a tambourine before Stephan Eggert moved during ‘Der Tag wird kommen’ from his drum kit to a separate tom. Following drumbeats were announced as the sound of an old and rusty diesel engine in a big container ship under Irish flag with a crew of eight men… well, as already said… the announcement were not always meaningful.

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With ‘Zeit’, the sound stayed a bit calmer before the pushing ‘Bring mich heim’ followed and was extensively celebrated. Smoothly, ‘5000 Meilen’ from 2010 album ‘Von Ewigkeit zu Ewigkeit’ followed and therefore, I had expected a little more enthusiasm from the audience. Obviously, the attendees needed a little moment and finally, they gained some drive when the band started holding back a little. Also the title track of the current album, ‘Magma’, could not be missed. The song was accompanied by red glowing light elements in the back of stage while the stage itself was flooded with smoke while piano tunes and whining guitars in slow motion were sounding from the speakers. Another essential element of the setlist is the song ‘Von Ewigkeit zu Ewigkeit’ for which the FZW choir was requested. With the crunchy ‘Die alte Zeit zurück’ (the old times back), the dance indeed moved far backwards in time to the beginning of SELIG and also following ‘Bruderlos’ is quite aged, but always an acoustic delight. And so, the regular set ended after 90 minutes, but of course, there was a dessert for the audience.

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‘Sie hat geschrien’ was the rhythmic starting of the encore bloc for which Mr. Neumann with his percussion equipment changed to the stage rum, accompanied by flashing lights. Sure that the audience was singing loudly along and also during the groovy ‘Wenn ich wollte’, the Dortmund audience proved word-perfect. Latest with the love song ‘Ohne Dich’, the last fan was heated up to working temperature and gave everything… including “Wir sind Dortmunder Jungs” (We are Dortmund guys) chants. At the end, Christian Neander changed the acoustic guitar again for the electric six-string and also bass man Leo Schmidthals was kept busy. After another break, first Malte alone returned to stage creating flickering sound-scapes with his keyboard, leading over to ‘Alles auf einmal’ and bringing the rest of the band back to stage. Once more it was time to dance before the wonderful ‘Wir warden uns wiedersehen’ (We will meet again) was goodbye and promise at the same time. As Plewka said, “We are SELIG (selig=blessed), I hope you are too!”

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At least the extended “Oho” chants of the crowd intended that the FZW was up for something more after about two hours playing time. But anyway, the Hamburg guys bet farewell to their fans, sending them out into the cold night with an outro. With the presented songs, SELIG did anything right. The new songs – except of ‘Schwester Schwermut’ and ‘433’ all songs of the new album were played – were matching perfectly to the old and beloved gems and so, the evening was overall successful for anyone.

Setlist
01. Ich lüge nie
02. Sie scheint
03. Schau Schau
04. Arsch einer Göttin
05. Love & Peace
06. Danke
07. Wenn ich an Dich denke
08. Ist es wichtig?
09. Der Tag wird kommen
10. Zeit
11. Bring mich heim
12. 5000 Meilen
13. Magma
14. Von Ewigkeit zu Ewigkeit
15. Die alte Zeit zurück
16. Bruderlos
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17. Sie hat geschrien
18. Wenn ich wollte
19. Ohne Dich
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20. Alles auf einmal
21. Wir werden uns wiedersehen

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 9
Sound: 9
Light: 8
Total: 8.5 / 10

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All pictures by Daniela Vorndran (http://www.vorndranphotography.com / http://www.black-cat-net.de/ / http://www.myspace.com/vorndranphotography / http://www.facebook.com/blackcatnet)


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