31st October 2023
Powerwolf - “Wolfsherbst Tour 2023” - Support: Serenity, Lord of the Lost
The wolves are howling again: for Halloween, POWERWOLF called their community to a mass in Düsseldorf, and a great many of fans came for the start of the “Wolfsherbst Tour 2023”. POWERWOLF alone is reason enough to attend a concert. But this visit was made even sweeter by the selection of support bands: Symphonic Metal by SERENITY was meant to kick off the evening, followed by the Dark Rock of LORD OF THE LOST to keep the mood going before the powerful main part should begin.
The admission was scheduled for 6 pm. This made the journey to Düsseldorf challenging by the combined rush hour traffic and concert traffic. The last 500 meters to the parking lot at the venue took a massive amount of time even 40 minutes before admission. However, this prepared one for what came next: the long queue in front of the entrance. Hundreds of people had already gathered there, patiently waiting for the doors to open. Luckily, the weather was not a complete disaster, so the waiting only became unbearable due to nervousness. The admission itself finally started on time and went smoothly, allowing enough time inside to grab a bite to eat, get something to drink, and secure the best seats. It was supposed to start at 7 pm.
“Was supposed to start” was quite accurate. Serenity actually started 10 minutes earlier, at 6:50 pm. The Austrians have been active in the music world for almost 20 years. Just a few days ago, they released their eighth studio album ‘Nemesis AD’, which they promoted well during the concert. They even refrained from making a dig at Helene Fischer. At first, it wasn’t clear why, but a quick search showed that her last albums reached number one in Austria. Singer Georg Neuhauser would like to change that and reach the top himself. One can still dream, after all.
The SERENITY show can be described as solid. It was enjoyable to watch and listen to. There were clearly many fans of the band in the venue, not just at the front of the stage, but also in the back on the stands, where there was enthusiastic cheering. Georg Neuhaus often interacted with the audience, trying to get them involved. However, the energy did not quite catch on, which may have been due to the noticeable musical difference from the main band. Or the fact that there was a gap of several metres between the band and the front row of the audience due to the installation at the front of the stage. Or because of the poor lighting, which made it difficult to recognise the band members.
Nevertheless, the show was a success, SERENITY is a likeable band that is a pleasure to see and hear. A successful start to the evening. After about 30 minutes the set was played through. If that was not enough for you, you can see Serenity again next year on their own tour.
Total: 8 / 10
Lord of the Lost
The changeover on stage went quickly. Not even 30 minutes after SERENITY, the lights in the hall were dimmed. A few times in a row, which led to some confusion as to whether the next show was really going to start. But it did. In an unusual way, because the guys from LORD OF THE LOST did not come on stage one after the another as usual, but rather all together. Suddenly they were there, suddenly the show started. Loud, brutal, breathtaking. The dark rockers from Hamburg around singer Chris Harms know how to take over the world’s stages and wrap the audience around their fingers, and not just since their time at the ESC. They have done it before and proved it again this time.
Chris literally flew across the stage and Claas and Pi were their usual lively selves. The setlist combined songs from various albums and included songs like ‘Morgana’ and ‘Loreley’, but also the popular ‘Full Metal Whore’ and new songs such as ‘Destruction Manual’. The various different guitars, luminous and non-luminous, were also a must. What was missing, however, were Chris’ usual announcements. Of course, he spoke and interacted with the audience. But it seemed much more reserved than usual. The light setting could also be described as restrained.
This did not detract from the show itself, the music, the singing and the sympathy. Because as written: LORD OF THE LOST know how to do it. And remain captivating. That is why the end of the set after about 50 minutes somehow came a bit too soon. But you certainly will not have to do without the Lords for long - you will be able to admire them on stage again soon.
Total: 8 / 10
The fact that the next changeover only lasted 30 minutes was somewhat surprising. Because when the lights on the stage came on shortly after 9 pm, the crowd was presented with a completely new sight in the POWERWOLF look. The gate on the LED screen opened for each individual band member and everyone was greeted by thunderous applause. POWERWOLF kicked off. With power, with energy and with fire. And the fans went with them. From the first to the last song, people sang along, jumped along, danced along and went wild. This also could be seen on the LED screen, which showed live footage of the audience as well as Attila (and Falk) between the songs.
Because that is also well known: POWERWOLF take their time. A show by the wolves does not just consist of the songs and the performance during those songs. An elementary component is also the time in between, when Attila addresses the audience, when Falk animates the fans, when each song is introduced separately in a unique way. Or simply a little time has to be bridged until, for example, the organ for ‘Amen and Attack’ is finally in place and Falk can take possession of it as the “front organist”.
As an interlude like this can be quite long, you naturally have to keep the audience warm. For example, through choral exercises. Traditionally, this is done according to the motto “first everyone - then just the men - then just the women - then again everyone”. Not with POWERWOLF. After “all” came “only the women”, then the children. Yes, the children. And it sounded so fantastic that there was a big round of applause afterwards. The security did not sound quite as fantastic, but still surprisingly good. It did not really matter what Attila asked the audience to contribute. He got it. Immediately and without obligation in a great version. Sometimes with a little coaching, for example when it came to jumping on the count of four... not on three. And certainly not on two.
POWERWOLF put on a breathtaking show in the hall. Everything was literally put in the right light, the LED wall impressed with the changing backgrounds and the live recordings, the pyros and other special effects were in a very good manner and to the right amount and the members of POWERWOLF knew how to inspire. Each on their own and interacting with each other. The setlist included everything from classics such as ‘Armata Strigoi’ and ‘Werewolves of Armenia’ to live debuts of ‘Wolves of War’ and ‘Alive or Undead’. The unspectacular sudden departure for the obvious short break before the encore was somewhat irritating, but also somehow part of it. The final of the show deserved the term “final” and there was this short moment of pride for the audience when POWERWOLF turned towards them and bowed with a huge “Thank you, Düsseldorf” showing on the LED screen.
If you have the chance then visit one of the other shows of the “Wolfsherbst Tour”. Or any other POWERWOLF show. You will not regret you. On the contrary: You will be converted and join the congregation of wolves. Because Metal is religion. And Metal is us.
01. Faster than the Flame
02. Incense & Iron
03. Wolves of War
04. Army of the night
05. Dancing with the dead
06. Armata strigoi
07. Amen and attack
08. Sainted by the storm
10. Beast of Gevaudian
11. Demons are a girl’s best friend
12. My will be done
13. Alive or undead
14. Resurrection by Erection
15. Blood for Blood
16. Fire & Forgive
17. We drink your blood
18. Werewolves of Armenia
Total: 10 / 10
All Pictures by Nina Hermes