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him6Airport Drispenstedt, Hildesheim, Germany
10th and 11th August 2013
M’era Luna Festival Day 1: Molllust, Rêverie, Lord of the Lost, Desdemona, Ost+Front, The Arch, End of Green, Eisenfunk, Mesh, Cultus Ferox, Saltatio Mortis, Diorama, The Crüxshadows, Haujobb, Mono Inc., Gothminister, Deine Lakaien (acoustic), Nachtmahr, ASP, The Klinik, HIM

This year’s M’era Luna Festival got everybody going even before it started. The line-up had something for everyone: rock sounds, electronic beats and even softer sounds. And with 25,000 people making their way to the airport in Hildesheim in order to enjoy some of it, the festival was announced as sold-out. The weather seemed promising and got some sunshine but not too high temperatures to the visitors and smoothed the way for the first day of the festival, including many great bands and special shows!

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Already the evening before had something to offer. Of course there was the obligatory opening party at the disco hangar. But before, like during the last few years, there were some author’s readings. First author was well-known and one of Germany’s most successful fantasy authors, Markus Heitz, who was reading from its new book ‘Totenblick’. During the last year, Heitz really improved his reading style and so, this first lecture was really entertaining. Equally entertaining, but with much more sarcasm, Boris Koch followed. Last reader of the evening was, like during last year, once more Christian von Astor, reading some short stories from his book ‘Bilderbuchboy’, causing lots of loud laughs and amused faces. It is always great fun to hear him reading. He’s simply a great entertainer.

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Molllust - Main Stage [AK]

Early at 11:00, the band MOLLLUST opened the festival on the main stage. The band won the newcomer contest that was held before the festival and therefore, was the opener of the festival. The band comes along with a unique mixture of metal and opera. The members showed that hard metal tunes can be combined with soft and classical notes. The vocals that were performed by Janika Groß showed expertise and were technically near to perfect. One should keep an eye on them - one of the biggest surprises of the festival. // www.molllust.com ‎ / https://de-de.facebook.com/molllust // Rating: 7 / 10

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Rêverie - Hangar [AK]

Never having heard of this band before but seeing quite an amount of people making their way to the Hangar Stage, one of the first bands this Saturday seemed promising. The young guys delivered a rock based show with nice vocals and are definitely on our watch for the next festivals. In my opinion, the band that was formed in 2010 actually deserved a better slot to play but made the best out of it and gave a lot of people a nice time. The band played through their records that came out so far and showed everyone why they are handled as one of the biggest runner-ups in the gothic and metal scene. Keep out for them. Well done, guys! // http://www.reverie-welten.de / https://www.facebook.com/reveriewelten //‎ Rating: 7 / 10

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Lord of the Lost - Main Stage [AK]

LORD OF THE LOST is one of those bands that can be found on many line-ups, especially in the past couple of years. Therefore, one has seen the band more than one time. Usually this leads to a “been there – seen that”-state of mind but LORD OF THE LOST manage to persuade every time they enter the stage! Of course, the audience mainly consists of female viewers (well, no surprise!) and they surely heated up the ground. The success of the black men is even bigger is one considers that the guys just formed up five years ago – but what can I say? Well-balanced, edgy rock music with a great voice will get you fans in no time. And delivering a great show every time you enter the stage will get you even more! // http://www.lordofthelost.de / https://www.facebook.com/lordofthelost /‎ Setlist: 01. Live Today / 02. Sex on Legs / 03. Prison / 04. Dry The Rain / 05. Blood For Blood / 06. Die Tomorrow // Rating: 8 / 10

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Desdemona - Hangar [AK]

The band already formed in 1996, yet they are not quite as big as one might think. DESDEMONA from Poland quickly heated up the Hangar stage with their mix of metal and electronic sounds which was quite unusual with an interesting edge to it. Sadly, the female front voice didn’t come out clear which gave it a little snotty touch that wasn’t really my cup of tea. In Poland, the band is one of the biggest dark alternative acts and it wouldn’t be a surprise if they made their way up in our country as well. Their show at the M’era Luna 2013 surely set the first step for them! // https://www.facebook.com/desdemona.officialbook / http://www.myspace.com/desdemonapl // Rating: 6.5 / 10‎

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Ost+Front - Main Stage [AK]

OST+FRONT delivered a bloody show with some specials like a choir on stage. Neue deutsche Härte, or you call it simply RAMMSTEIN clone, is mixed with butcher-costumes as well as masks in order to entertain the audience. The rock sounds combined with funny lyrics, about meat i.e., definitely did not miss the part of entertaining, musical value is probably a matter of opinion. However, OST+FRONT surely lead to some enjoyment around lunch. www.ostfront.tv / https://www.facebook.com/ostfrontberlin / Setlist: 01. 911 / 02. Heimaterde / 03. Dein Kanal / 04. Heimkind / 05. Denkelied / 06. Fleisch / 07. Schlag mich / 08. Silikon / 09. 1&1 / 10. Gangbang / 11. Ich liebe es // Rating: 6 / 10

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The Arch - Hangar [AK]

THE ARCH surely wasn’t on my watch before the festival and is sadly not on it after their show. The band played a mixture of electro of wave but didn’t convince with energy or creativity. Short: it could have been just some band that one forgets as soon as the show is over, even if they are out already for so many year and despite of their classic ‘Babsi ist tot’ or ‘no Noise’ and ‘Ribdancer’. And this is what happened after I saw them at the Hangar. The female singer just stood in the back without moving and her singing didn’t really do anything to the music. Seen for the first time and forgot about them immediately after their show. Long-time fans of the band, already existing since the mid-eighties, surely have a different opinion. // http://www.thearch.be / https://de-de.facebook.com/thearchband // Rating: 5 / 10

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End of Green - Main Stage [AK]

Gothic rock meets Metal. The guys from Stuttgart delivered a mixture of powerful riffs with passionate lyrics filled with melancholy. The band has been on stage for 20 years now but surely do not seem old. Their lyrics are mostly filled with sad thoughts, yet the mood during the concerts is anything but sad. The 20 years of experience also show off during their performances. The band has a routine on stage but doesn’t get boring over the years. However, Michelle Darkness (vocals, guitar) finally has to realize that his look with the heavy make-up is not really suitable for him anymore. Nevertheless, the band surely again showed why they have been playing shows for such a long time. // www.endofgreen.de / https://de-de.facebook.com/endofgreenofficial // Setlist: 01. Pain Hates Me / 02. Dead City Lights / 03. Evergreen / 04. Killhoney /05. Hurter / 06. Goodnight Insomnia / 07. Tie Me A Rope / 08. De(ad)generation (Premiere) / 09. Dead End Hero. // Rating: 8.5 / 10

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Eisenfunk - Hangar [AK]

Seeing the huge amount of people going into the Hangar promised something big or entertaining. EISENFUNK entered the stage and immediately began with their hard beats mixed with elements of noise and easy-to-remember melodies. The audience mainly consisted of dancing people wearing neon and therefore mixed in with the people on stage. The sound of EISENFUNK is definitely one of the best ones to dance to but surely not anything but deep when it comes to the lyrics. The trio from Bavaria made its way up in the German industrial scene and gathered quite an amount of fans which could also be seen at this year’s M’era Luna: the entrance at the Hangar was stopped because the room couldn’t handle any more people. In short: EISENFUNK are great for partying but don’t expect anything deep. // www.eisenfunk.de / https://www.facebook.com/eisenfunk.official // Rating: 7 / 10

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Mesh - Main Stage [M]

Unfortunately they were not headliners what was even mentioned by Mark Hockings saying that they are here as a support band. Thus their show started in the early afternoon on the main stage. What was striking was the missing banner. Surely lots of people know already this band from Bristol, UK especially because of their current album with the hit single ‘Born to lie’, but nevertheless this was just too much understatement comparing to other bands with a similar long band history or even the “younger” ones. It is quite a sad thing to see that they still don’t seem to know how to present themselves. But let’s go to the show. A big crowd filled the place in front of the stage and it was not only my friends and I who were partying and singing with them. There were even fans coming the long way from Israel attending the show. The sound was not so good when they started with their first song but it got better with the second one. Obviously most part of the audience was confident with the lyrics of the current album, too. But to my friend’s and my personal taste they presented too many songs from ‘Automation Baby’ except their old song ‘You didn’t want me’ but the latter was presented in a very catchy new live version which we enjoyed very much.

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Don’t get me wrong I do love the new album and I love the band and thus I try to see as many concerts as possible but for a festival and with only a short set, a mixture with more old “party” songs that people who are not so into MESH know from the dance floors of the discotheques it would get the crowds even more going. The singing quality of Mark Hockings was brilliant as we are used to. Nice to see was that finally Lord Richard Broadhead, who is the live keyboarder and sings the backing vocals, finally shows more emotion on stage by smiling and dancing a bit behind his keyboard. Sean Suleman, the live drummer, showed much enthusiasm as well. Richard Silverthorn gave his best to interact with the audience by inviting them to clap their hands and sing with them and ‘Born to lie’ is the song to do so by shouting “Hey”as well as ‘Taking for granted’ where the people have the chance to sing the song lines “I need to start again. Take me far away”. Altogether it was a solid show but too short of course. // http://www.mesh.co.uk / https://www.facebook.com/meshtheband // Setlist: 01. Intro / 02. Adjust your set / 03. You didn’t want me / 04. Just leave us alone / 05. You want what’s owed to you / 06.When the city breathes / 07. Taken for granted / 08. Born to lie // Rating: 7.5 / 10

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Cultus Ferox - Hangar [AK]

First of all: why would you put such a big (member-wise) band on the small stage at the Hangar? More and more people entered this little space in front of the audience and soon, no spot was left that wasn’t filled with band members or instruments. The band played medieval tunes with bagpipes and huge drums, combined with elements of rock and electronic beats. Usually, this kind of music goes straight into my dancing legs but the small space in the Hangar didn’t give the band a chance to shine due to the many instruments that could not be unfolded. Next time, put the band on a bigger stage and you will surely get a better result, I am sure. // www.cultusferox.com / https://de-de.facebook.com/cultusferox666 // Rating: 6 / 10

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Saltatio Mortis - Main Stage [AK]

The next band continued with some of the instruments but definitely fired up a little more people, including the security. Rarely have I seen such a band like SALTATIO MORTIS that has so much energy on stage. Especially Alea (vocals) entertains with acrobatic interludes. Although the new album ‘Das Schwarze Einmaleins’ has not been out at the date of the festival, the band already presented their new, quite socio-critical, single ‘Wachstum über Alles’, featuring tunes by Joseph Haydn. Hits like ‘Prometheus’ especially got everyone in the audience going. A highlight was probably the song ‘Spielmannsschwur’ that was accompanied by Martin from MONO INC. SALTATIO MORTIS is probably one of the bands that one will never get tired of seeing live. Can’t wait for the next time, especially when listening to the great new album! // http://www.saltatio-mortis.com / https://www.facebook.com/saltatiomortisofficial // Setlist: 01. Ode an die Feindschaft / 02. Habgier und Tod / 03. Prometheus / 04. Hochzeitstanz / 05. Wachstum über alles / 06. Koma / 07. Früher war alles besser / 08. Eulenspiegel / 09. Spielmannsschwur (Together with Martin Engler from Mono Inc.) // Rating: 9 / 10

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Diorama - Hangar [JNU]

At half past four in the afternoon, Torben Wendt and his band mates entered the stage at the Hangar of the M'era Luna. DIORAMA are surely one of the best German bands of the scene but still they only get afternoon slots although their qualities are head and shoulders above some bands which get headlining slots. However, it was a good crowd at the Hangar stage which got 40 Minutes of DIORAMA entertainment after an extended soundcheck. The short set focussed on the popular club hits, of course. And besides the classic 'Synthesize Me' and 'Child Of Entertainment' the latest album has also a crowd pleaser to offer with 'The Scale'. Unlike their own club tour this spring, DIORAMA could use only one video screen at the M'era Luna which looked a little less impressive but the videos itself looked great and quite creative, anyway. // http://www.diorama-music.com / https://www.facebook.com/pages/Diorama/20921056622 // Setlist: 01. Maison Du Tigre / 02. The Scale / 03. Synthesize Me / 04. Child Of Entertainment / 05. Why / 06. Ignite / 07. Hope // Rating: 7 / 10

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The Crüxshadows - Main Stage [AK]

Although the band is originally from Florida, USA, they are a well-known member of Germany’s line-ups. The synth pop / Wave band with singer Rogue showed a lot of energy on stage and as usually had female dancers to support them. Especially Rogue was looking for some fan-interaction and therefore made his way down to the first row over and over again. Although his voice is surely not what one might call clear and powerful, the band has a lot of followers and the space in front of the stage was pretty crowded. In my mind, the mix of synth pop with classical sounds by the violin is what makes the band a good live band but surely not its vocals! // www.cruxshadows.com / https://www.facebook.com/cruxshadows // Rating: 6.5 / 10

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Haujobb - Hangar [JNU]

“Thank you that you are here and not over there!”, says HAUJOBB's Daniel Myer, pointing in direction of the main stage. German Rockers MONO INC were playing there to a massive audience at this moment but the electro wizards of HAUJOBB also drew a good crowd to their show at the hangar stage. It's been ten years since HAUJOBB played at the M'era Luna, in-between were the disbandment and reunion of the group and the release of the brilliant album 'New World March' in 2011. This album, and especially the brilliant single 'Dead Market', has caused a boost of popularity for the project of the former COVENANT member Daniel Myer and Dejan Samardzic. Live on stage they are completed by keyboarder and percussionist Manuel G. Richter, and the three guys delivered a set of wicked electronics, polyrhythmic noise and irresistible hooks at the M'era Luna, focussing very heavily on the last album 'New World March'. Unfortunately HAUJOBB again ignored their earliest material, some fans would surely love to hear classic gems as 'World Window' or 'Maternal Instinct' live again.

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But anyway, the energy HAUJOBB produced on stage was incredible and hypnotized the audience. Much of the energy was die to front man Daniel Myer, who has developed some showmanship over the years and who is live more of a shouter than a singer, unlike on their studio works. HAUJOBB's short festival set was finished with 'Dead Market' which proved its anthemic quality as a live song. A performance which definitely caused a hunger for more! If it wasn't for the generally problematic acoustics at the hangar stage, from which every band who performed there had to suffer, I would rank their show at this year's M'era Luna among the best HAUJOBB gigs I've ever seen! HAUJOBB are definitely one of the finest and most sophisticated acts of the electronic underground of today, anyway, and you definitely should check out if they play a place near you! // http://haujobb-music.com / https://www.facebook.com/haujobbmusic // Setlist: 01. Crossfire / 02. Let’s Drop Bombs / 03. Renegades Of Noise / 04. Soul Reader / 05. Penetration (Fuck The Floor) / 06. Little World / 07. Dead Market // Rating: 9.5 / 10

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Mono Inc. - Main Stage [AK]

When I saw MONO INC. for the first time, I was quite impressed with their tight and unique sound but after seeing them a couple of times, I quickly got tired of their shows because they are always the same. Martin’s way of singing works out quite well for the English songs but the German songs don’t work out this way. However, this time the band had some famous support: Joachim Witt, one of the most famous German singers. Of course, this changed the well-known structure of the show but it didn’t change the fact that the band simply does not manage to present anything new. // www.mono-inc.com / https://de-de.facebook.com/monoinc // Setlist: 01. My Worst Enemy / 02. Heile, Heile Segen / 03. Seligkeit / 04. Kein Weg Zu Weit (with Joachim Witt) / 05. Arabia / 06. The Passenger (Iggy Pop cover) / 07. Revenge / 08. After The War  (Gary Moore cover) / 09. Voices of Doom / 10. Get Some Sleep // Rating: 6.5 / 10

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Gothminister - Hangar [AK]

The show of GOTHMINISTER, that took place at the Hangar stage, was only allowed for people over 16. After seeing some of the band members, this precaution was actually reasonable. There was blood everywhere and the singer actually seemed to have an open chest with smoke coming out of it. Additionally, there were lots of fire and pyro effects. Music-wise the band delivered a solid show without any specialties. Anyhow, the band is worth seeing for everybody searching for a nice show with some good music. However, here the eye has definitely the privilege over the ear. // www.gothminister.com / https://www.facebook.com/officialgothminister // Rating: 7 / 10

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Deine Lakaien - Main Stage [M]

With DEINE LAKAIEN, another old stager performed at the M’era Luna on the main stage. They are known for high quality concerts although I have the impression that they don’t really like to perform at festivals. But this time it was an extraordinary appearance as it was an acoustic concert with Ernst Horn at the grand piano and Alexander Veljanov singing. Performing this way at such a festival is quite a risk and for sure it was a brave decision to do so but it worked. The venue was crowded. With the dusk it was definitely the right time for such a concert of a more classical touch as the upcoming darkness gave this special concert an even more solemnly atmosphere. And with the fans using sparklers to some songs it became even more festively. Of course it was no show for having a party but more for listening attentively and singing to the songs in case you know the lyrics. Even though there were already lots of hardcore fans of ASP amongst the audience they seem to enjoy the show as well as you could hear frenetically applause after each song.

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And indeed it was quite interesting to hear the well-known songs interpreted this way and I’m quite sure that lots of people had goose bumps like me several times. Alexander showed up with his amazing vocal quality while Ernst proved once again that he is a brilliant and passionate musician. At some parts he played some interludes and “tortured” the strings of the grand piano with a drum(?) stick (which would make sense as the piano is actually a percussion instrument, too). Taking the risk for such a performance at a festival with no other special effects did pay as the people demanded an encore which they got with two more songs. // http://www.deine-lakaien.com / https://www.facebook.com/DeineLakaien // Setlist: 01. Where you are / 02. Who'll save your World / 03. The Game / 04. Over and done / 05. The Mirror Men / 06. Gone / 07. Fighting the Green / 08. Return / 09. Dark Star / encore: 10. One Night / 11. Love me to the End // Rating: 8.5 / 10

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Nachtmahr - Hangar [AK]

NACHTMAHR is one of the biggest runner-ups within the electronic scene in the past few years. Originally coming from L’ÂME IMMORTELLE, singer Thomas decided to do a project on his own and so, NACHTMAHR quickly convinced the gothic scene with hard electronic beats and a significant voice. Also, the band stands out with their show: females in military clothes, flags and videos make up the entertaining part of their shows and deliver an image of a post-apocalyptic future. For this image and the behaviour, Thomas often was called a Nazi, but he’s always denying and anyone has to judge himself. The show for that matter is definitely worth watching and listening to if you like this kind of music. The gig was one of the best ones in the Hangar at this day in my opinion and attracted a lot of people. Nicely done! // www.nachtmahr.at / https://facebook.com/nachtmahrprojekt // Setlist: 01. Tradition / 02. Tanzdiktator / 03. Weil ich’s kann / 04. Kriegserklärung / 05. Freuer Frei! / 06. Mädchen in Uniform / 07. Mütterchen Russland / 08. Rise and Fall / 09. Ich bin / 10. Boom Boom Boom / 11. Can you feel the Beat? / 12. Deus ex Machina / 13. I believe in Blood / 14. Katharsis // Rating: 8.5 / 10

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ASP - Main Stage [AK]

Smooth vocals, raven feathers, lots of fire and rock tunes come along with one of the headliners: ASP. The well-known German rockers from Frankfurt am Main, led by the singer Alexander Sprang, short ASP, delivered one of the best shows of this first day. The band showed great stage presence and gave a round performance, introducing themselves with older and newer songs. Also, some pyrotechnics (and snow) were fired which also pleased the eye. The band has gone through some changes in the past but surely did not lose their talent on stage. A special guest also came along: Ally The Fiddle accompanied the band during a couple of songs. // www.aspswelten.de / https://www.facebook.com/AspsWelten // Setlist: 01. A Prayer For Sanctuary / 02. Wechselbalg / 03. Kokon / 04. Krabat / 05. Die Löcher In Der Menge / 06. Schwarzes Blut / 07. Und wir tanzten (Ungeschickte Liebesbriefe) / 08. I Don't Wanna Be Me (Type O Negative cover) / 09. Ich bin ein wahrer Satan / 10. Duett (Das Minnelied der Incubi) (with Ally) / 11. Werben (with Ally) / 12. Weichen[t]stellung (GeistErfahrer Reprise) / 13. Ich will brennen // Rating: 9 / 10

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The Klinik - Hangar [JNU]

On late Saturday night one of the highlights for all EBM lovers headlined the hangar stage of the M'era Luna. And THE KLINIK is a true legend! Founded way back in 1980 by Marc Verhaeghen, things really took off when Verhaeghen joined forces with vocalist Dirk Ivens in the mid-80s. Unfortunately Marc Verhaeghen has to be replaced by VOMITO NEGRO's Peter Mastbooms behind the keyboard rack for the recent gigs, including the M'era Luna show, because of Verhaeghen 's on-going health issues. Get well soon, Marc! However, THE KLINIK gave the M'era Luna audience a taste of how things were back in the early days of the scene. Minimalism with maximum effect, brutal beats, claustrophobic and nightmarish atmospheres well supported by provocative videos screened on the backdrop of the stage. Focal point of the show is surely Dirk Ivens, one of the most charismatic performers of the scene – even when he hides his face behind a white mask, as at the M'era Luna gig.

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Starting with the powerful 'Hours & Hours', THE KLINIK presented a set filled with classics like 'Go Back', 'Memories', 'Pain And Pleasure' or 'Black Leather'. And the new tracks of this year's album 'Eat Your Heart Out' fit in seamlessly and without any difficulties, and especially 'In Your Room' is a candidate for a future classic. The 60-minute set of THE KLINIK was a lesson of how it has to be done and why this scene once made a difference! No cheesy love songs, no Gothic carnival, against mainstream, against the superficial pleasure society. Just a sonic monolith of rage and deliberate provocation right in your face! The contrast to HIM, who simultaneously played at the main stage outdoors, couldn't be bigger! And still you can have fun and enjoy yourself at a THE KLINIK gig if you're just willing to give in yourself to it. I'm among those who rate THE KLINIK's performance as the best of the whole M'era Luna weekend. A long story cut short: Impressive! // http://www.dirkivens.com / https://www.facebook.com/TheKlinikDiveSonarAbsoluteBodyControl // Rating: 10 / 10

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HIM - Main Stage [AK]

THE headliner of the first day finally entered the stage: HIM! The band seemed to be in a good mood, although Ville still wasn’t feeling as fit as before (he had been sick over the past weeks). The setlist was the same as on their current tour that was right before this gig and included a big profile of their musical past and present. Especially songs like ‘Right here in my arms’ and ‘Join me in death’, the older hits, got everybody going and resulted in a huge choir consisting of a big amount of fans feeling like they are being 16 again. Also, their current single ‘Tears on tape’ made it onto the setlist. Short: HIM brought back some memories of times when everyone of us were younger and showed that they still deserve a great reputation. What a nice ending to the first day! // www.heartagram.com  / https://de-de.facebook.com/theheartagram // Setlist: 01. All Lips Go Blue / 02. Buried Alive By Love / 03. Rip Out the Wings of a Butterfly / 04. Right Here in My Arms / 05. The Kiss of Dawn / 06. Hearts at War / 07. Join Me in Death / 08. Your Sweet Six Six Six / 09. Passion's Killing Floor / 10. Tears on Tape / 11. Wicked Game (Chris Isaak cover) / 12.  It's All Tears (Drown in This Love) / 13. Soul on Fire / 14. Into the Night / 15. When Love and Death Embrace // Rating: 9 / 10

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Written by Anne Kuhfuß [AK], morTICIA [M] and J. Niggels Uhlenbruch [JNU]
All pictures by Anne Kuhfuß (with post-processing by Florian Schürmann) & Daniela Vorndran (http://www.vorndranphotography.com / http://www.black-cat-net.de / http://www.facebook.com/blackcatnet)


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You are here: Home Festivals Live Review: M’era Luna Festival - Hildesheim 2013 (Day 1