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asp9Waschhaus, Potsdam, Germany
22nd October 2011
ASP & Lahannya

It was a cold Saturday evening when we made our way to Potsdam. After driving into the wrong direction for about 15 minutes, we finally arrived at the Waschhaus where LAHANNYA had already begun playing their songs. Unfortunately, I had the wrong time in mind but it wasn't so bad since we only had missed 2 or 3 songs. However, we were happy to be there and watched LAHANNYA, waiting for the main act ASP to begin. Their CD ‘Fremd’ was released just a day ago, so everything was new and everybody was excited to see what the band had come up with.


With her very first track ‘Drowning’ on the Amducias Sampler of the US American label she proved that she’s able to even reach listeners beyond her own genre and inspired by the overall positive resonance she went on to produce and release the ‘Drowning’ EP on her newly founded label and receives positive feedback as well. She then moved to London and became the resident DJ of the club Limelight. In 2004, LAHANNYA began her long-term collaboration with SOMAN, resulting in club hits like ‘Tears’, ‘Eye to Eye’ or ‘Mask’. The trigger for producing own material again came with a chance meeting with Lutz Demmler, who eventually became her new producer and their work resulted in the critically-acclaimed ‘Shotgun Reality’, released in 2007. In 2008, she already came back with the ‘Welcome to the Underground’ EP. Now, the band is touring with songs from their albums ‘Shotgun Reality’ and ‘Defiance’, including the EPs. LAHANNYA on stage is Lahannya (vocals, song writing, lyrics and occasionally guitar), Lutz (UMBRA ET IMAGO - bass, song writing, production), Chris (NFD - guitar) and Luca (drums). /

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Music & Performance
It was the second time for me to see LAHANNYA and I was anxious to see if I could revise my opinion into a positive one. After seeing them during the “Horror Vacui” tour with ASP a couple of years ago, my opinion wasn’t really the best due to the fact that the band didn’t really do a great job in Magdeburg back then. However, after arriving a little late we missed the first couple of songs but made to the show for the most part. This night, LAHANNYA surprised me with a better sound and better - yet not greatest - vocals. Their music can be described as a mixture of alternative and electro music. Although the band hasn’t released a lot of albums yet, LAHANNYA herself has a lot of experience in the music industry due to her collaborations with other bands. This definitely showed off that night. She had a really sympathetic way of dealing with the fans and was always smiling and thanking everybody for the support.

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The music itself was a nice mix of different genres, contributing to a unique sound. The vocals definitely took some getting used to but this is probably just a matter for taste. Since she doesn’t have the typical female alternative/electro voice, not everybody will like her and the way she is interpreting the songs - and neither did I. However, music is a matter of taste, like always. In my eyes, the band did a good job of getting the fans in the right mood for the upcoming ASP, although maybe not having the best vocals - but like I said: that’s just a matter of taste.

Music: 7
Performance: 8
Sound: 8
Light: 7
Total: 7.5 / 10

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ASP is a rock band from Frankfurt / Main which was founded in 1999 and has their origin in the black scene. The band name is based on the nickname of the singer, Alexander “Asp” Spreng. The band above all was known by the fifth-hasty cycle around the 'Schwarzer Schmetterling'. Their most successful album up to now was the album ‘Zaubererbruder - Der Krabat-Liederzyklus', published in 2008, which reached place 13 of the German album charts. In early 2011, the split with guitarist and producer Matthias Ambré was announced. From that point on, guitarist Lutz Demmler (UMBRA ET IMAGO) is replacing him, completing the line-up consisting of Alexander “Asp” Spreng (vocals), Andreas “Tossi” Gross (bass), Oliver “Himmi” Himmighoffen (drums) and Sören Jordan (guitar). One day prior to the concert the band's 7th studio record was released which introduces fans to a new chapter in their history entitled ‘Fremd’.


Music & Performance
A short time of changing later, ASP soon began their second show of the current tour. The first thing that surprised a lot of people (including me) was the change of line-up on stage. Matthias had left the band and been replaced by Lutz Demmler who had already been on stage during the show of LAHANNYA. Quite a performance, Lutz! However, the band started out with a mixture of new songs from the album ‘Fremd’, and older well-known songs that were accompanied by the fans’ singing and dancing. The Waschhaus was bursting at the seams during songs like ‘Duett’, ‘Krabat’ and ‘Ich bin ein wahrer Satan’. During the song ‘Werben’, LAHANNYA joined Alex on stage, giving the song a new cover. The whole band did a really good job on stage, getting everybody in the room to move, sing and have a good time.


Towards the end of the show during the second part of encore songs, the band introduced a new tradition. During the song ‘Rücken an Rücken’ (back to back), the audience was supposed to turn around until he sings “Dreh dich bitte um” (please turn around). Of course, not everybody followed his request but after a second attempt to start the song, almost everybody was standing with their back towards the stage and so did Alex. Quite a nice tradition although it needs quite a lot of time to get everybody in the right position. And due to the continuing clapping and cheering of the audience, the band even did another song as an encore although it was not planned. All in all, it was a great show, like always. The band found a good mix of old and new songs entertaining everybody in the Waschhaus in Potsdam that night. Let’s hope, ASP will go on doing such a good job on stage.


However, they did mention (before the song ‘Schwarzes Blut’) that there is one chance somebody could get the band on the show of Carmen Nebel: being allowed to play the full 17 minutes version of ‘Angstkathedrale’. I don’t think that this will ever happen. I am sure that the band will always be true to themselves and their fans. Thank you for that!

01. A Prayer For Sanctuary
02. Wechselbalg
03. Sing Child
04. Duett (Das Minnelied der Incubi)
05. Demon Love
06. Wer sonst?
07. Eisige Wirklichkeit
08. Und wir tanzten (ungeschickte Liebesbriefe)
09. Werben (feat. Lahannya)
10. FremdkörPerson
11. Kokon
12. Ich bin ein wahrer Satan
13. Schwarzes Blut
14. Krabat
15. Unverwandt
16. Nie mehr
17. Sanctus Benedictus
18. Rücken an Rücken
19. Ich will brennen
20. Schwarzer Schmetterling (not on Setlist but still played)

Music: 9.5
Performance: 9.5
Sound: 9
Light: 8
Total: 9 / 10


All pictures by Anne Kuhfuß

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