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introLuxor, Cologne, Germany
19th March 2013
Zeromancer – “Tortured Artist” Tour, Support: Eyes Shut Tight

After ZEROMANCER had to cancel their last shows in 2011/2012, the Norwegians were finally back on German staged with the new album, ‘Bye-Bye Borderline’. So far, the tour was supported by SCREAM SILENCE and EYES SHUT TIGHT. For the last German show, we only got latter band opening up for ZEROMANCER.


Eyes Shut Tight

The Hamburg based industrial rock formation EYES SHUT TIGHT was founded end of 2007 by singer Trashed Soul and guitarist Kris. In the meantime, the band consists of five band members and in June 2010 they released their debut album, ‘Secret Destroyer’. The band is influenced by the late 90s and bands like MARILYN MANSON, NINE INCH NAILS, KORN and RAMMSTEIN. The band’s second and current release is titled ‘Fairground Zero’ and is available since May 25th 2011. Just for their tour with ZEROMANCER, the band released a limited (100 copies), hand-numbered tour EP ‘Eyes Shut Tight - the Outlaws’. EYES SHUT TIGHT is Dirk Trashedsoul Wieczorek (vocals), John (guitars), Jolene (bass) and d.P. (drums). http://www.eyesshuttight.com / www.myspace.com/eyesshuttight7 / https://www.facebook.com/pages/Eyes-Shut-Tight/114965558540594

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Music & Performance
For their both album releases, the band had received quite good reviews as the fusion of trends, Metal and Punk with Electro and Industrial elements, is quite striking indeed. But sadly, those qualities cannot be transported to a live show. Seen the band a few times so far, I must say that also their gig in Cologne was rather disappointing. It still seems the band cares more about its look and appearance than in putting a striking show onto stage. Judging by their released, they could do better. But anyway, there were a few people clapping along, even though the performance was rather on standard level without real highlights. Additionally, the bad sound did not really make things better… Musically, the band surely has some good parts in their songs, but all-over, there’s still a lot of room to improve.

Setlist
01. Childlike Face
02. When I Beat You
03. Follow
04. You Live Through Me
05. Open Mind
06. We Want
07. Blind

Rating
Music: 6
Performance: 6
Sound: 6
Light: 6
Total: 6 / 10

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Zeromancer

Rising from the ashes of their previous bands, Kim Ljung and Erik Ljunggren gave birth to ZEROMANCER in 1999 to create something that should be much more different. First time was spent with the composition of new songs. Soon the line-up was completed with a drummer, singer and guitarist and the search for a producer could start. Not as easy as you might think it is, but in the end they found the right one with James Saez and soon the debut ‘Clone your Lover’ was finished. In the following time they grew to a regarded live act with festival gigs at the M’era Luna as well as small club tours. After the less successful album ‘Eurotrash’, ZEROMANCER tried out a different path on their third album ‘Zzyzx’, playing with a more catchy approach. With their fourth album ‘Sinners International’ released in February 2009, they’re going back to their dark industrial rock roots, ‘The Death of Romance’ followed just one year later. Afterwards, except from various live shows, the band went silent and a whole three years had passed until we are served with a new – already the sixth – album by the Norwegian Industrial Rockers, called ‘Bye Bye Borderline’. ZEROMANCER is Alex Møklebust (vocals), Kim Ljung (bass, vocals), Noralf Ronthi (drums), Lorry Kristiansen (synths) and Dan Heide (guitar). http://www.zeromancer.com / http://www.myspace.com/zeromancerzentral / https://www.facebook.com/zeromancerzentral

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Music & Performance
After quite a long stage absence, I was very happy to see ZEROMANCER again on German stages, sadly on a club that is a bit small in my opinion, especially when it comes to the ceiling above stage. During the set, it was interesting to see Alex standing on a box, not trying to hit his head. But to the show, when the band one after another, Alex as last one, were entering the stage, they were welcomed by huge applause. There was also a really devoted group of fans in the audience who screamed loudly on would wave Norwegian flags later to show their admiration for the band. After the intro ‘Helvetesintroen’, the show kick-started with ‘You Meet People Twice’, followed by the new album’s title track, ‘Bye-Bye Borderline’. And believe it or not, people went nuts (at least for a city like Cologne where the mood is usually a bit reluctant) from the very start. The next treat was following with ‘Doppelgänger I Love You’, seeing the crowd getting even more excited and loudly singing along. After ‘Chrome Bitch’, two more songs from the new album were following. First, we got the slow-motion serenade of self-destruction, called ‘Manoeuvres’, and afterwards, as Kim announced, the song with the German word, ‘Auf Wiedersehen Boy’. To welcome this song, people loudly shouted “Auf Wiedersehen”.

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As next we reached one of the fan’s faves, ‘Sinners International’, when Alex nearly kissed the ground when rocking at the micro stand. With calmer ‘Montreal’ and ‘LCYD’, two more new songs were included into the set and they really fitted perfectly to the classic ones. A fantastic example of a boiling performance, including hard hit additional drums, followed with ‘The Hate Alphabet’. For the next one, ‘It Sounds Like Love…’, there obviously was something planned with the extra snare drums as well. But there seemed to be technical issues. And as Kim commented…, “there were three snare drums and no one worked…” So, the song had to do without this extra pinch of salt. Following after melodious, balladry ‘Cupola’ was one of the highlights of today’s show, and it was not a ZEROMANCER song. First Alex asked, who would go and see DEPECHE MODE during their upcoming tour. And he told the audience, that he would see the band in Berlin in Summer. Having said that, you could guess what was up on the setlist now. Right! It was the fulminant DEPECHE MODE song ‘Photographic’, when band and audience kind of freaked out and the die-hard fans (whom Alex dedicated the song to) heavily waved their Norwegian flags.

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With ‘The Tortured Artist’, the song from the current album the tour was lending its name from, the main set ended with a thoughtful song, showing how much anger and bitterness has piled over the last three years and had to be burst out. Under huge applause, the band left the stage. But there was quite some more to come. First addition was the highly acclaimed ‘Clone Your Lover’ causing excited reactions. With ‘Ammonite’, things cooled down again and you could emphasized the atmospheric side of ZEROMANCER. As known from the past, an additional drum part was included here with Lorry and Kim treating an extra instrumental part. The second encore started calm again with only Alex and Lorry on stage to present the wonderful ‘Mint’. Alex performed that song solely behind the microphone, was highly focused on giving a good vocal performance and he delivered greatly. Towards the end, the tempo was increased again for the show’s final, being marked by ‘Doctor Online’.

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When the band had left the stage afterwards, people did not stop to applaud and scream. There seemed to be a short discussion and then the band came back for one more final song, ‘Fade To Black’. What an end of this show! Now, German fans just have to wait for the band coming back in Summer for a few festival shows…

Setlist
01. Helvetesintroen
02. You Meet People Twice
03. Bye-Bye Borderline
04. Doppelgänger I Love You
05. Chrome Bitch
06. Manoeuvres
07. Auf Wiedersehen Boy
08. Sinners International
09. Montreal
10. LCYD
11. The Hate Alphabet
12. It Sounds Like Love (But It Looks Like Sex)
13. Cupola
14. Photographic (Depeche Mode cover)
15. The Tortured Artist
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16. Clone Your Lover
17. Ammonite
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18. Mint
19. Dr. Online
---
20. Fade To Black

Rating
Music: 8
Performance: 9
Sound: 7
Light: 6
Total: 8 / 10

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All pictures by Daniela Vorndran (http://www.vorndranphotography.com / http://www.black-cat-net.de/ / http://www.myspace.com/vorndranphotography / http://www.facebook.com/blackcatnet)


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