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goetheserben17C-Club, Berlin, Germany
4th April 2015
Goethes Erben

GOETHES ERBEN, one of the greatest legends of the German Gothic and Alternative music scene, celebrated their 25th anniversary of being on stage, and Berlin was the city which had the honour to celebrate with them. The C-club was three quarters full, in a mix of many old and some new fans of GOETHES ERBEN. Most of the visitors were clearly part of the Gothic scene – at least visually.


Founded by Oswald Henke and Peter Seipt, they started with very dark and morbid music, changing to a more optimistic and bright style after their first years, although they never forgot their roots. Peter Seipt left the band shortly after their genesis and the members changed frequently before they found a fixed basis in Mindy Kumbalek, who was responsible for the keyboard and the programming. Mindy wasn’t at stage this evening, but GOETHES ERBEN had ten live musicians, between them veterans like Susanne Reinhardt (violins) and Markus Köstner (drums), but also Sonja Kraushofer, known by many people due to her projects  PERSEPHONE and L’ÂME IMMORTELLE. The audience looked not only forward to the jubilee but also to the presentation of some brand new songs, whose debut performance was expected at this concert. /


Music & Performance
GOETHES ERBEN appeared punctually at nine o’clock with a virtuous violin intro. After the intro, Oswald Henke entered the stage, whispering, crying, with a highly emotional attitude and his unique stage presence. The light was of a dark violet, and the song was new, but had the unmistakable style of GOETHES ERBEN: disturbing, emotional, with poetic lyrics. “To be alone, to be left alone, to be alone being together” cried Henke on his next song, ‘Der Eissturm’ (The storm of ice), before giving a warm welcome to the audience: “We finished our project in Berlin, and now we start right here with our new project”, he said. He referred to the theatre project ‘Menschenstille’ (the silence of men), which will be presented in Bayreuth in autumn of this year. Whereas the first two songs were new, the next one was one of the “classics”: ‘So sei es’ (It should be like this), from 1992, performed with impressive piano sounds and red lights.


After one of the next songs, ‘Die Form’, also one of the elder songs from 1995, he reminded the audience to “not to be too enthusiastic, don’t forget, you are Goth!” and said with a pinch of irony that the song was from a time “where you were younger”, pointing both to the mostly elder audience and to some of the members of the band, “and some of you not even born”, looking at one young background singer, who smiled. “To funny!” someone of the public cried ironically. One of the most atmospheric moments happened at the presentation of another new song of ‘Menschenstille’, the theatre project. This song was dealing with souls who die too young – being murdered, committing suicide or dying from diseases – and who go on a type of “search”, cause they have to deal with leaving the life to early. Oswald put three lanterns with electrical candles on the stage (“You know, fire protection requirements” he said smiling), two of them on the front of the stage and one of them on the keyboard, whose light was colder due to the blue stage light.


The lights created a really enchanted atmosphere, and surely some of the public thought on dear people whom they had lost too early. Oswald sung about “what one isn’t still able to do. Not to kiss anymore, not to love, not to bluster, not to hate, not to remember, it never stops hurting completely… We would never have known each other, never fallen in love”. The public was really petrified by this emotional and touching song. Before Oswald performed one of the next songs, ‘Sitz der Gnade’ from the album ‘Gewaltberechtigt’, he pointed to the fact that in the United States “people are thinking about shooting at people again”, referring to the actual discussion about the death penalty by shooting in the U.S. The audience got really excited by this song. The next song was an enchanting ballad: ‘Was war bleibt’ (What have been, remains).


After this, he performed ‘Die Brut’ about the danger of fascism, beginning with the words “An issue, which is still actual, unfortunately” and ending the song with the lyrics: “And also Röhm [the gay leader of the Nazi organisation SA) was only a brutal rowdy!” After two dark and disturbing songs from ‘Menschenstille’, he finished the concert, but came back to the stage for four encores. The first of them was ‘Leben lohnt es’ (Life pays it), the next one ‘Nichts bleibt wie es war’, a disturbing song about falling bombs and the sudden death. Whereas the next song was also a brand new one taken from ‘Menschenstille’, they finished with ‘Sas Ende’ (The end) from 1992, a song that deals with the end of times, an apocalyptical vision of death, fascism and destroyed environment, leaving the audience full of emotions and exhausted.


GOETHES ERBEN presented a great show and the band had an extraordinary presence on stage – it was an evening worth to be recorded.

01. Ironie im Plattenbau
02. Himmelgrau
03. Der Eissturm
04. So sei es
05. Bunter Rauch
06. Die Form
07. Tage des Wassers
08. So weiß ich doch Du warst
09. Kopfstimme
10. Sitz der Gnade
11. Was war bleibt
12. Die Brut 2000
13. Mensch sein
14. Narbenverse
15. Lebend lohnt es
16. Nichts bleibt wie es war
17. Die Sonne schmilzt
18. Das Ende

Music: 10
Performance: 10
Sound: 8
Light: 9
Total: 9.3 / 10



All pictures by Frank Meinel (

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