RoD header


ColumbiaClub, Berlin, Germany
24th February 2008
L’âme Immortelle, Übermutter & Beyond the Void

It was a sad Sunday evening in Berlin. The concert of L’ÂME IMMORTELLE was originally planned for Kato, but was moved to the ColumbiaClub. God knows why; the amount of people that showed up in the ColumbiaClub could’ve easily fitted in the smaller Kato. As if they were premium rock stars, L’ÂME IMMORTELLE had brought two support bands. And I’m glad they did.


The German band BEYOND THE VOID mixes gothic with rock and metal, and debuted with the self-produced EP ‘Our Somewhere Else’ in 2002. In 2006, their second production, ‘I Am Your Ruin’ appeared on Chris Pohl’s label Fear Section, and their latest CD ‘Seductora’ appeared on Endzeit Elegies, part of the well-known Rough Trade label. With a clearly rising rock star status, BEYOND THE VOID is an emerging and very promising band. BEYOND THE VOID are Daniel Pharos (vocals), Dominik Morgenroth (lead guitar), Martin Tapparo (rhythm guitar), Rudolf Pfaffenzeller (synths, grand piano), Ulrich Mühlbauer (bass), and Claus Legarth (drums).
Music & Performance
BEYOND THE VOID opened the evening pretty early with a 30 minute set. The six men on stage were clearly up for it, and they opened their energetic rock show enthusiastically. As a warm-up, singer Daniel Pharos gave away a few singles to the audience after the first song during his introductory talk. The talk didn’t last long, because BEYOND THE VOID had many songs to play and little time. They presented a flawless show of catchy, powerful rock with mainstream potential and an energetic front man whose powerful voice sounded like a rawer version of Ville Valo. By the end of the show they announced that they would be at their merchandise stand, eagerly “available for anything” - the “Benutz mich” (“Use me”) shirt of guitarist Martin Tapparo filling in the rest......
Music: 8
Performance: 8
Sound: 7
Lights: 5
Total: 7


ÜBERMUTTER is the formation of former Lucilectric Luci van Org, front woman (or, in ÜBERMUTTER’s terms, frontUNman) and singer, backed up by guitarist Brettner and the further anonymous female Unheilsarmee (“Army of Misfortune”) (why Brettner is mentioned separately remains a mystery). Luci van Org is presented on the ÜBERMUTTER website as a powerful and dominatrix superwoman and mother, thusly the ÜBERMUTTER. The album ‘Unheil!’ appeared on April 4th, 2008, and so ÜBERMUTTER were presenting all new material during their tour with L’ÂME IMMORTELLE. They present their music as FeMetal, firm but fair: “You play, you pay!”
Music & Performance
ÜBERMUTTER played shortly after BEYOND THE VOID. Perfectly uniformly dressed in sexy fetishist military uniforms, they looked hot as hell; they were clearly up for a hot and powerful show. Just like BEYOND THE VOID, ÜBERMUTTER was a very pleasant surprise; their music, consisting of rock music mixed with industrial elements carried by the powerful, militaristic voice of singer Luci van Org was very convincing. Unfortunately, Van Org’s acting was not. Even though the attempt to put up a theatrical show was well-meant and at times entertaining, mostly Van Org didn’t seem convinced of herself, which made the whole theatrical part unconvincing. The inclusion of some bad clichés like putting a condom on a cucumber was clownesque rather than sexy, and completely unnecessary; their uniforms and stage presentation as musicians were more than enough to make up for a great show. These women have enough power to fill up a concert hall for themselves; just too bad that the only male in the band had to be the lead guitarist.
Music: 8
Performance: 7
Sound: 6
Lights: 7
Total: 7


L’ÂME IMMORTELLE has 10 years of successful music making to look back to. Their albums have typically known a great musical variety, mixing elements of rock, industrial, and classical, reaching their peak in 2003 with the mainstream (!) hit ‘Brennende Liebe’, a collaboration with OOMPH!. Their music is presented as the epiphany of Goth sensibility and melancholy, in their use of cold electronic sounds with sensitive lyrics. This tour is promoting their latest album, ‘Auf deinen Schwingen’, released in 2007. L’ÂME IMMORTELLE are Sonja Kraushofer (vocals) and Thomas Rainer (vocals and programming).
Music & Performance
This was the first time I ever experienced that the support bands were better than the main act, as well as the first time that I didn’t even bother to watch the entire concert. I’m sorry, but this was really the worst concert ever, and there is no nice way of saying it even though I spent a lot of time thinking about euphemisms or tactful ways to put it. Had they been a new band, I would have called them Goth wannabees judging by the way they presented themselves. Since they’re an established Goth band of whom I expected quality, I sadly have to call them once-have-beens, embodying the ruins they sing about perfectly (which could also be regarded as a positive thing in a wave of sarcastic optimism). During song breaks, some kind of show host who must have been the featured special guest, was telling bad stories with poetic aspirations, which in that context made absolutely no sense at all other than L’ÂME IMMORTELLE trying to allude to some kind of Goth-trueness or so.

These breaks took all the speed out of the set, which of course featured many songs from the latest CD. L’ÂME IMMORTELLE must have been presenting a bad version of what they once were, displaying pathetic images of old-school Goth clichés lacking any energy or will. As if they needed the money rather than wanting to play music. Especially singer Sonja Kraushofer was a sad presence; her best emotional expression was during being blindfolded, for the rest of the show she just stood statically behind her mic or doing some type of look-at-how-Goth-I-still-am-I am-moving-my-arms-around-in-my-ugly-dress dances. Her voice didn’t make up for that either; instead of the beautiful dreamy voice on CD I heard a bad, nasal imitation of it, completely ruining the beauty of the songs, especially their best ones. Therefore I walked away after 45 minutes; I didn’t want to wait for the moment that my favourite, ‘Another Day’, would get ruined in my head forever.

Music: 5
Performance: 4
Sound: 6
Lights: 6
Total: 5.5

All pictures by Ilona van de Bildt

See also (all categories):

Comments powered by CComment