8th October 2006
Orkus Festival Club Tour II: Project Pitchfork, Unheilig, Zeromancer, Down Below
Today was the last day of the II. Orkus Festival Club Tour which was leading through different cities all over Germany. An awesome show in Berlin successfully rounded up this year's tour.
First on stage were DOWN BELOW, a newcomer band from Germany. Vocalist Neo-Scope, guitarist Carter, bass player Convex and drummer Mr. Mahony managed to become well-known and widely liked performers at a number of important European rock festivals.
Their dark rock sound combines different styles of music and does not fit into one specific drawer. DOWN BELOW can enthuse a crowd mixed of gothic, rock and indie fans at the same time. And they did. The audience was all theirs within seconds and enjoyed listening to their melodic rock songs. Fast and slow songs alternated effectfully and harmoniously. At that point the crowd did not yet fill up the whole venue and although the first ranks rocked along with the band, the people in the back were rather chilled. Only every once in a while you noticed somebody nodding along to the rhythm.
The band presented itself in the typical look of the 40ies: white shirts, suspenders and ties. Their music – as mentioned above – was excellent: dark rock with catchy guitar riffs and a talented vocalist whose voice along with the rest of the performance captured the ears and hearts of every single audience member. Especially the women in the audience must have appreciated that due to the heat in the venue vocalist Neo-Scope unbuttoned his shirt and revealed a very handsome and well-shaped body.
From one six-pack to the next: ZEROMANCER’s front man Alex Moklebust entered the stage already without a shirt. Kim Ljung (bass, vocals), Noralf Ronthi (drums) Erik Ljunggren (programming) and Chris Schleyer (guitar) are the other members of this Norwegian band.
The hard guitar sounds and powerful synthesizers are characteristic traits of this band. Their list of favorite bands includes DEPECHE MODE, KRAFTWERK and NINE INCH NAILS which explains their very own sound. It's a mixture of industrial and strong guitar sounds with a little noise paired with great hook-lines which makes every single ZEROMANCER's song a hit. Now the venue was packed, the atmosphere was extraordinary. The band chose the perfect play-list, a mixture of ballads and rhythmic rock songs. One hit after the other.
ZEROMANCER once more spectacularly demonstrated that they are a downright live band. They are not only very dynamic on stage but also absolutely authentic and know how to capture their audience. Alex never stood still on stage - he was jumping around animating the crowd to clap, to sing and to party. Bass player Kim and vocalist Alex not only caught the eye because of their good looks but also because both of them did such good jobs at animating the audience. They may have made some new fans among the crowd today. Though shouts for encores stayed unanswered, it once again was a memorable and terrific gig.
In 1999 the band UNHEILIG was formed. Their first hit “Sage Ja” (= say yes) marked their break-through and the beginning of their successful career. They have a huge fan base – not only limited to the Orkus scene. UNHEILIG play a mixture of traditional electro and rock topped off with vocalist Graf's impressive voice. The area in front of the stage was jam-packed now.
The Band UNHEILIG showed their gratitude and respect to their fans in performing the song “Mein König” (= My king) for the first time in front of a live audience. The song was picked beforehand by the fans via internet voting. “Mein König” is Graf's farewell to his grandfather. During this sentimental song the first lighters flickered above the heads of the audience – and they were to return when “Mein Stern” (= My star) was being played. Apart from those songs, UNHEILIG's repertoire of course contained the faster songs which made them popular in the first place. Hits like “Ich will alles” (= I want it all), “Maschine” (= Machine), “Sage Ja” (= Say yes) and “Freiheit” (= Freedom), the latter was sung along loudly by the whole audience, were greatly appreciated and a cross section through their career so far. A special highlight of the evening was the duet with Peter Spilles, the vocalist of PROJECT PITCHFORK, presenting their featured song “Ich will Leben” (= I want to live). The audience went crazy because of the song's dynamic and power.
The atmosphere was warm and affectionate. The artist enchanted the audience completely, made them a part of the show and they thankfully rewarded him with their full attention, all lighters and - when lighters were short - hands in the air. They played encores without number. The Graf was totally thrilled by the fans and shouted: “Berlin, you are the greatest audience!”
The gothic scene wouldn't be were it's at today without PROJECT PITCHFORK. The band was founded by Peter Spilles and Dirk Scheuber and has been the driving force in the music business since the early 90s due to their unconventional style. Either their music or the content of it was usually anticipated as being offensive. They were way ahead of their time. PROJECT PITCHFORK were and still are inconvenient – because of their faith, their visions and their self-confidence. That's why the band formed by Peter Spilles (vocals), Dirk Scheuber (keyboards), Jürgen Jansen (keyboards), Achim Färber (drums) and Carsten Klatte (guitar) is so special.
PROJECT PITCHFORK have become the real deal within the scene. They presented an energetic and inspiring set list which of course featured their greatest hits such as “Timekiller” or “Existence” and was a thoughtful mix of their older pieces. This was very well received by the audience.
One by one the members of the band entered the stage. The last one was front man Peter. Not only did he wear a big grin on his face but a drawn broad blue stripe. Since their last tour it is plain obvious how relaxed PROJECT PITCHFORK are by now when they give concerts. Scheubi animated the crowd non-stop with gestures and facial expressions; Peter worked rhythmically with his special microphone supporter and was pantomiming every odd song for better understanding.
To his right Carsten Klatte moshed so hard that little drops of sweet flew right past the people standing in fifth row. Although it was the fourth and concluding performance of the evening the audience rocked as if it were the first. They partied and danced and partied and danced... If the band hadn't stopped playing, they probably would still be partying. It was an awesome club festival...
Pictures by Nadine Ginzel