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introKulturpark, Deutzen, Germany
5th to 9th September 2014
Nocturnal Culture Night 9 Day 1: Landvogt, Mundtot, Binary Park, Patenbrigade: Wolff, In Slaughter Natives, Nachtmahr, Christian von Aster, Welle:Erdball, Jännerwein, The Klinik, Uwe Nolte (Orplid), Laibach, Sieben (Matt Howden)

It is always at the farthest end of the festival season in autumn when a little festival takes place that over the years has gained considerable recognition amongst dark music lovers: The Nocturnal Culture Night (NCN), already running in its 9th edition.

And let me say that it was the most successful edition so far with a sold-out venue. As every year, the festival is taking place inside the boundaries of the picturesque landscape of the culture park in a little place called Deutzen (near Leipzig). It’s not only the familiarity of the atmosphere that has shaped its reputation, moreover it is the vast assortment of bands the NCN 2014 organizer come up with every year anew that differs quite a bit from the usual. This year we were blessed with good weather mostly. But there were also some short, but heavy rain showers on Saturday and Sunday, not getting the mood down though. Friday night offered LAIBACH as headlining band, most to my personal joy!


Landvogt – Small Stage [NN]

This year Nocturnal Culture Night festival was opened by the three-piece rock act from Liechtenstein. Well, sounds interesting but as for the band’s sound, in general it’s good, not too diverse and at the some point not too monotonous yet here it’s just a matter of opinion. LANDVOGT was founded in 1998 and after a series of transformations/ influences their style got its current shape. I would consider it more electronic with that lack of heaviness and expressiveness. Of course the musicians did their best playing live but the songs themselves were not powerful enough to warm up people especially at the beginning of the whole event. Actually such kind of music suits better for clubs or closings leaving listeners in a state of some drowsiness however the set was done, the festival started and the weather was just great for an open-air. // / // Setlist: 1. Dragonfly / 2. Inside Outside / 3. Komm zu mir / 4. Weirdos / 5. How It Seems like / 6. Point of no Return / 7. Heavenly Action // Rating: 6.5 / 10


Mundtot – Big Stage [NN]

Thus on the main stage there played a band I was eager to see. MUNDTOT was founded in 2009 and by now its discography consists of two full-length albums including the latest release ‘Schatten’ the songs from which were mostly presented that day. Actually the tracks originally were meant to produce a strong and melancholic impression, played live didn’t lose their power despite the weather and the general relaxed mood of the people, the self-confident rocking four-piece managed to create some sombre atmosphere also keeping the energy flowing. The good quality of the sound, great and expressive vocals and meaningful compositions worked and demonstrated the band’s potential to play excellent shows but unfortunately the time was limited. However among the songs performed I’d like to mark my favourite ‘Einsamkeit und Zweifel’ and ‘Schwarz / Weiß’ which made the whole picture complete. // / // Setlist: 1. Nacht / 2. Schönster Traum / 3. Lebensleid / 4. Schwarz / Weiß / 5. Virus Mensch / 6. Einsamkeit und Zweifel // Rating: 9.5 / 10


Binary Park – Small Stage [NN]

This electronic formation seems to combine in their sound different styles and elements from industrial, EBM to ambient. Honestly the set was too short to notice everything single feature if it had been used, maybe a little bit of ambient but an overall impression traditionally is ok. I can’t say I was impressed with the performance as the performance itself wasn’t too much impressive yet it’s typical for the genre. The musicians enjoyed the concert themselves, the audience did the same which means that the people heard something more than mere electronic beats or maybe didn’t try to hear. Anyway tastes differ. The only thing I can add is that sometimes it felt like the vocals and the music went separately and it was hard to concentrate on everything because when you tried to listen to words there came those constant beats and didn’t leave enough space for thinking. Well, in some situations it may be useful, at the concert everything depends on a listener. // // Rating: 7 / 10


Patenbrigade: Wolff – Big Stage [NN]

One of the brightest, I mean it literally, gigs at the festival: the musicians who looked like road workers wearing orange outfits had made a real show using different equipment and involving the audience into the process. The music also created a positive atmosphere and in general the whole thing may be described as interesting and funny. It’s hard to say for sure how many members there are in the band because from time to time orange spots appeared here and there, mostly near the stage and some people also were running with a kind of banner which brought in even more positive emotions. So the band can be definitely credited for that. // / // Rating: 8 / 10


In Slaughter Natives – Culture Stage [NN]

Sometimes the band’s name fully reflects their style and you can get an idea of what to expect and this is just that case. It’s cold, scary and making such a contrast with the weather and the music I had heard earlier. So one either should be an absolutely devoted fan of the genre yet I still don’t know what genre it is or too curious to discover something new. Fortunately I don’t belong to any of these categories so let’s stop here. Within the festival there was this formation with a very specific sound meant not for everyone. // / // Rating: 5 / 10


Nachtmahr – Small Stage [NN]

At this set I felt myself as a total stranger because people really liked what they saw and heard, at least most part of them. Definitely the show was good enough and taking into consideration that it was within festival also gives some points to the band so I just say a few words about my first impression. And at first everything seemed to be exaggerated and looked funny if you didn’t try to take it seriously. I mean the music was dark and powerful enough but the attempt of the singer to make the songs even more powerful didn’t work. Also it took some time to get used to the manner of singing/ screaming or the voice to be exact. With water guns the thing was getting even funnier nevertheless the crowd enjoyed and actually the main idea of concerts, festivals and all that is to have fun. // / // Setlist: 1. Tanzdiktator / 2. Feuer frei! / 3. Verräter an Gott / 4. Die Fahnen unserer Väter / 5. Kriegserklärung / 6. Boom Boom Boom / 7. Mädchen in Uniform / 8. Can you feel the beat? / 9. Weil ich's kann / 10. Liebst du mich / 11. I Hate Berlin // Rating: 6 / 10


Reading Christian von Aster – Reading Stage [DV]

Currently, writer CHRISTIAN VON ASTER seems to belong to any festival line-up. After WGT and M’era Luna, he was now reading also at the NCN. He was the first artist on the small reading stage, being new on the festival map and placed a bit off from the other stages, so the noise from the concerts was bearable and you could really hear the writer. Christian von Aster, born 1973, is a writer with different faces, with already more than 20 publications on his sleeve. As used during festivals, ASTER was reading some funny stories to entertain the audience. As always, I and the attending people had a lot of fun. I only can recommend attending one of his readings! // /


Welle:Erdball – Big Stage [NN]

One more interesting and pretty nice performance of the evening –  WELLE:ERDBALL looked and sounded very original and every piece of the concert, every move was so well-though and performed than the gig turned out to be stunning. I haven’t heard this band before and can’t say I’m gonna listen to them now because the style is not among my preferences but that was a pleasure to see their show and the music still electronic but versatile and not too much overloaded with monotonous irritating beats also was pleasant for ears. In general that was a great set diluting all the previous electronic uniformity. // / // Setlist: 1. Intro / 2. Wir sind die Roboter (Kraftwerk cover) / 3. Wir wollen keine Menschen sein / 4. 23 / 5. Ich mach mich schön / 6. Gib mir meine Zukunft wieder / 7. Schweben, Fliegen und Fallen / 8. Arbeit Adelt! / 9. Liebe der 3. Art / 10. Starfighter F-104G / 11. VW Käfer / 12. Hoch die Fahnen / 13. FanFanFanatisch (Rheingold cover, announced as new song) / 14. Monoton & Minimal / 15. Feuerwerk (Stephan Remmler cover) / 16. W.O.L.F. / 17. Es geht voran (Fehlfarben cover) // Rating: 9 / 10


Jännerwein – Culture Stage [NN]

A very interesting and pleasant to hear and see Neofolk band from Austria added some diversity and freshness with their, I would say “alive”, real sound. But what else to expect from the formation playing in that style? That’s a pity I couldn’t see the whole but even the part I saw was enough to realize that it was one of the best gigs that day. Maybe will see JÄNNERWEIN live next time. // /ännerwein/201766787476 // Setlist: 1. Sturm / 2. Durch jede Stunde / 3. Kämpfe / 4. Schweigen / 5. Wehmut / 6. Den berg Empor / 7. An den Mistral / 8. An den Mond / 9. Blühen und vergehn / 10. Quell / 11. Komm mit mir / 12. Klage // Rating: 9 / 10


The Klinik – Small Stage [NN]

I saw the band once at the Amphi and now at the other festival another place and time but the same two men wearing masks and long black coats and making a show. I can’t say “playing music” because there were no instruments onstage so there was just an electronic sound and vocals however for the audience that was more than enough to have a good time, especially for the ones loving the old-school electro sound, while the first festival day gradually was coming to an end. // // Setlist: 1. Walking with Shadows / 2. Murder / 3. Bite Now Bite / 4. Quiet in the Room / 5. Black Leather/ 6. Hours and Hours / 7. Mindswitch / 8. In Your Room / 9. Pain and Pleasure / 10. Obsession / 11. Sick in Your Mind / 12. Moving Hands / 13. Memories / 14. Lies / 15. Talking to a Stranger / 16. Go Back // Rating: 7.5 / 10


Uwe Nolte (Orplid) – Reading Stage [DV]

There was a second reading on the small stage far off, that we sadly missed. UWE NOLTE is mainly known for his work in Neofolk / Neo Classic project ORPLID, but he also played in several other bands. In 2012 he released a book of poems, ‘Du warst Orplid, mein Land!’, enrichted by his own illustrations.

Laibach – Big Stage [NN]

Actually I had heard about this band from Slovenia before but didn’t have any intention to listen to their music till this time. So what to say? On one hand the concert was much better than I expected, on the other hand I didn’t expect much. Don’t know about fans of the band or that style but I used to associate LAIBACH with a man wearing some sort of a hat with earflaps. And of course the man was onstage with the other musicians doing their best to make a good show. They seemed to succeed as the crowd liked every song and enjoyed the whole set to the full. So it had become a great finale for the first day and judging by the reaction of the audience I guessed the band was really well-known and welcome. The setlist included of course many songs from the latest album where Mina impressed with her wonderful voice. But besides, some classics could not be missed out. Just let me mention ‘B Machina’ or ‘Tanz mit Laibach’ making the audience crazy. // / // Rating: 9 / 10


Sieben (Matt Howden) – Culture Stage [DV]

While LAIBACH had ended their show at the big stage and taking care for the big final of the day, there was still one more concert to come. It was taking place in a familiar frame at the culture stage, where Matt Howden with his project SIEBEN was scheduled. SIEBEN, that’s Matt Howden and his violin. The man is looping himself and his violin play continuously, placing one melody layer over another. It is really exciting how his violin can turn into drums or emerging other unusual sounds. He just was swirling across the stage and his excited audience was celebrating the show until the last second. And the small stage was the perfect surrounding for this extraordinary music. // / / // Rating: 8 / 10


Written by Nataly Night [NN] & Dani Vorndran [DV]
All Pictures by Daniela Vorndran ( /

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