7th to 10th June 2019
Pre-Opening at Moritzbastei with Elektro All Stars event by “Schwarzes Leipzig tanzt” & Wave Gotik Treffen 2019 day 1 with Hell Boulevard, October Burns Black, Golden Apes, Jungstötter, Gitane Demone Quartet, Empirion, UK Decay, In Strict Confidence, White Lies
The time for the 28th Wave Gotik Treffen (WGT) has finally come and as always we’ve been all waiting impatiently for one of the most unique and special events of the Goth and Alternative Scene to happen. With over 220 artists, performances and events of all kinds WGT is offering a huge program for every taste and activity level. The unique organization and diversity make WGT incomparable to any other kinds of festivals.
Pre-Opening event on Thursday at Moritzbastei - Elektro All Stars (Nastja)
Our WGT started after building up our home at the Agra campsite for the next five days traditionally at the Moritzbastei. For many years in a row “Schwarzes Leipzig tanzt” and Daniel Myer invite the festival guests to join the - unofficially - also called “EBM Karaoke” event. The principle is quite easy - let the organisers invite some artist friends and colleagues to the “Tonne” at Moritzbastei on the Thursday before WGT, let them choose some of their favourite songs to perform and give them a microphine. You never know what you’ll get and so just let surprise yourself. The songs chosen by the artists who participate can vary from EBM or Goth Rock classics to 80ies dancefloor hits or modern chart smashers. Everything is possible. And so is this event unpredictable.
This year’s participants were Daniel Myer (HAUJOBB, ARCHITECT), Boris May (KLANGSTABIL), Geneviève Pasquier (THOROFON), Dorain (RIGA), Dan van Hoyel (HARMJOY), Z (SIVA SIX), Andreas Catjar (COVENANT), DrMolle (DSTR), Krisztian Arvai and Emese Arvai-Illes (BLACK NAIL CABARET). Some of the songs chosen to be performed this year were ‘Highway To Hell’ by Z, ‘Rock Me Amadeus’ by Boris May, ‘Da Da Da’ from TRIO with PRODIGY remix (thank you for the first tributes, they kept going during the whole WGT) performed by Daniel Myer, a truly epic version of ‘Arbeit nervt’ by Boris May and Daniel Myer, the very intense and breath-taking performance of MADONNA’s ‘Iconic’ by Krisztian Arvai and Emese Arvai-Illes from BLACK NAIL CABARET and many more! They all were really amazing and made this evening just perfect! Afterwards continuing to party at the various floors of the Moritzbastei or just enjoying a drink on the terrace outside after midnight and feeling the vibes of the incoming WGT that just started spreading around the city.
Hell Boulevard - Täubchenthal (Nastja)
We decided to start our first official WGT day at one of our favourite venues - Täubchenthal - with HELL BOULEVARD. The Goth & Dark Rock band based in Switzerland (though members are spread all over Europe, you could say) gave a strong and very enjoyable start in this year’s program. Be it ‘As Above So Beyond’, ‘Satan In Wonderland’ or ‘A Lesson In Pain’, the emotions are ranging from suffering from a severe heartbreak to the most engaging party hymns. ‘Bitch Next Door’ was dedicated with a wink to the band’s guitarist Fede von Marengo who is member of several other bands and projects (FLORIAN GREY, FADERHEAD). ‘In Black We Trust’ worked perfectly as what it is - a wonderful, engaging dark hymn for the Gothic scene that made the crowd shout out perfectly to the “In Black We Trust” calls of the vocalist Matteo vDiva Fabbiani at the end of the song.
Also the change of the last call to “In Trust We Black” didn’t confuse that many people which is probably due to the reason that the band has been touring a lot in the last months, be it as special guests of MONO INC. or LORD OF THE LOST or on their first own headliner tour in February 2019. Between the songs Matteo tried to speak some German, switching back to English most of the time, but the efforts were honoured. Also he spoke out how special it was for him and the band to be on that stage again as someone who has been visiting WGT for many years as a visitor, an honest and authentic declaration of love. For the performance of ‘Zero Fucks Given’ HELL BOULEVARD invited a friend to join on stage. The vocalist of FLORIAN GREY joined the band, wearing the funky LED party glasses and they all just celebrated a big party on stage. Both bands, HELL BOULEVARD and FLORIAN GREY, will unite for a co-headlining tour in September 2019 which means double-shifts for Fede von Marengo. The hard life of band bitches.
The last song ‘Hangover From Hell’ was dedicated by Matteo to the next morning, and morning after and… the enumeration was about to become long since WGT is a very long festival, so Fede just summarized it with a short and ironic “Good luck!”. A perfect end of the first gig and start to the WGT concert program! // http://www.hellboulevard.com / https://www.facebook.com/hellboulevard/ // Setlist: 01. Intro / 02. As Above So Below / 03. Satan In Wonderland / 04. A Lesson In Pain / 05. A Beautiful Ending / 06. Bitch Next Door / 07. In Black We Trust / 08. All I’ve Lost / 09. Bad Boys / 10. Zero Fucks Given / 11. Dead Valentine / 12. Living Dead Lover / 13. Love Is Dead / 14. Hangover From Hell / 15. End
October Burns Black - Täubchenthal (Marko)
The second band in Täubchenthal was OCTOBER BURNS BLACK. The band was founded in 2015. The band was absolutely convincing with their refreshing Wave and Gothic Rock sound. From start to finish the club was very well filled during their performance - the fans were totally excited. The upper area, from which one had a wonderful view of the stage, was really full. Throughout the concert, the stage was wrapped in cool lights and the sound, which was really very familiar to most fans, contributed to the good mood. There was a lot of applause from the WGT crowd for this great, sweaty show by OCTOBER BURNS BLACK. It was very warm in the club - after the gig, the club almost completely emptied, as people rushed outside to get some fresh air. http://octoberburnsblack.com / https://www.facebook.com/OctoberBurnsBlack
Golden Apes - Täubchenthal (Marko)
Gothic Rock band GOLDEN APES celebrated their 20th stage anniversary this year. On the day of their appearance at the Wave Gotik Treffen, their new album ‘Kasbek’ was being released. Their WGT performance opened with a song from their current album, 'Oblivion'. After the second song, singer Peer welcomed drummer Steve Hewitt. The former drummer of PLACEBO has been with his own band LOVE AMONGST RUIN for some time. The GOLDEN APES got to know him at several joint concerts, where they got the idea to do something musically together.
The hall was almost full for the Berlin band and the audience was enjoying the more melancholic moments of the concert as well as the Rock songs. It was in every way a special evening. It was a kind of birthday concert for the GOLDEN APES and for many of the fans their first hearing of some of the new songs. At the end singer Peer said thanks to Steve Hewitt and announced the last song, ‘Riot’. A very great performance by a wonderful live band! // http://www.goldenapes.com / https://www.facebook.com/GoldenApes // Setlist: 01. Oblivion / 02. Ignorance / 03. Voykova / 04. Vento / 05. Verity / 06. Missing / 07. Occams Razor / 08. Ferryman / 09. Kasbek / 10. Jump / 11. Happy Losers / 12. Riot.
Jungstötter - Schauspielhaus (Nastja)
The first discovery of this year’s WGT was JUNGSTÖTTER. I came across this band just a very few weeks ago due to the recommendation of a friend and was really curious to see them live now. The vocalist Fabian Altstötter is impressing with his voice that seems to have travelled directly from the Golden 20ies of the last centuries and the infinite melancholy and world pain. The musicians around him create enchanting sound spheres. A mix of chansons, Jazz, Pop and Electronica makes the music unique and takes away to other worlds. Piano, guitar, cello - classic instruments combined in new ways.
The sporty outfit with socks over pants breaks and the way Fabian is performing is quite unusual and might seem even unappropriated or at least strange and unusual for a performance during the WGT at the classy Schauspielhaus, the sophisticated music and songs make the contrast even stronger. The combination makes curious and doesn’t let go. The Avant-garde character of JUNGSTÖTTER is fetching. The performance started with the song ‘Wound Wrapped in Song’, Fabian sitting at the piano and singing passionately and with the soul of a star from a century ago. The whole performance is perfect to enjoy with the eyes closed, the songs immediately taking you far, far away, “feeling the narratives of days”. // https://www.facebook.com/jungstotter /https://jungstoetter.app.love-your-artist.com
Gitane Demone Quartet - Täubchenthal (Marko)
The penultimate act of the first day was the GITANE DEMONE QUARTET. Behind this project are four veterans from the Punk / Gothic genre, who are relatively well known from their previous projects. Now they work together to create a unique sound that blends different genres. The band consists of Gitane DeMone, Debra Erin Benham, Paul Roessler and Rikk Agnew. The concert started with a slight delay and the many fans were getting impatient. Singer Gitane said shortly after she entered the stage: “We will play the new stuff at first.” She skipped on the stage, which looked pretty skilful in her high heels and also quite funny! It was perfect for the extravagant music and performance. For me, at first, the music sounded very un-rhythmic. My ears took a while to get used to the “5/4” sound. For a while, it felt like it was more art than music. But there was a lot of cheering from the audience for the band and their weird and perfectly performed appearance. // www.gitanedemone.net / https://www.facebook.com/gitanegdq
Empirion - Westbad (Nastja)
We keep on breaking boundaries and making hard switches between the genres. From Goth’N’Roll to Avant-gardesque Indie to the Acid House and Rave pioneers EMPIRION at Westbad. The project from Essex, UK started as a trio with Oz Morsley, Jamie Smart and Bob Glennie as founding members in 1993. Jamie also has been supporting THE PRODIGY back then already. Bob Glennie lost his fight against cancer in 2005 and so the project paused for some years. Now EMPIRION are back as a duo and celebrating life like never before. The Electro & Rave set transformed the Westbad venue into a big party venue. Westbad was filled quite well and the crowd was dancing to the beats. The varied and timeless set successfully built a bridge from the early 90ies when the Acid House was on the peak to 2019. The atmosphere was supported by a cool light set-up and screen show. The duo obviously enjoyed the gig and that spread all over the venue.
The last song was a tribute, a really touching and great one. EMPIRION have chosen ‘Firestarter’ to make an own version of the song, putting Keith Flint’s picture on the screen who passed away on 4th March 2019 and left a huge amount of fans and friends all over the world behind. THE PRODIGY’s music has influenced music genres and artists all over the world for decades and that was perceptible all over WGT as well. All in all this was a really enjoyable set and a strong tribute at the end. Pro tip: EMPIRION just released their new album ‘Resume’. // https://www.facebook.com/empirion.music // Setlist: 01. Red Noise / 02. Stepper / 03. Side Swife / 04. Lock It Down / 05. I Am Electronic / 06. Jesus Christ / 07. Ciao / 08. Narcotic Influence / 09. Firestarter
UK Decay - Täubchenthal (Marko)
UK DECAY was founded about 40 years ago and was one of the leading bands in the Post-Punk genre. Later, news around the band went quiet for many years. In 2008 there was a reunion and some live performances and their second studio album was released in 2013. Tonight the band from Luton in England welcomed the audience in German: “Guten Abend”. There followed a lot of fun and action on stage, with the singer offering a great performance and a lot of commitment. Within their set they played their second single, which was released back at the end of the seventies!
The Täubchenthal was full with a powerful sound which made for a great atmosphere among the fans. Throughout the concert there was a bright light from the back of the stage, shining directly into the audience. Hopefully everyone could see okay later since it was exhausting for the eyes. The concert was a great end to my first WGT day and the Täubchenthal with its beautiful, large outdoor area and the roof terrace is one of the most beautiful locations in Leipzig. // www.ukdecay.co.uk / https://www.facebook.com/ukdecays // Setlist: 01. Unexpected Guest / 02. Shake’em Up / 03. The Black Cat / 04. Stage Struck / 05. HMJ / 06. Killer / 07. This City Is A Cage / 08. Duel / 09. Mayday Mayday / 10. Sexual / 11. Testament / 12. Revolutionary Lovesong / 13. For My Country / 14. Werewolf / 15. Unwind
In Strict Confidence - Westbad (Nastja)
For the first time we didn’t change the venue today as we also wanted to see IN STRICT CONFIDENCE. By the time Westbad filled even more and the temperature inside increased slowly, but steadily. The history of IN STRICT CONFIDENCE started in the early 90ies, so along with the early days of WGT. The band started with some delay as the cables didn’t want to do what they were expected to, but after a while they had mercy and the screens finally received the needed signals. So the band came on stage in full line-up - drummer, keys, HayDee on guitar, Nina finally joined the band on stage as well and Dennis of course. The set started with ‘My Despair’.
IN STRICT CONFIDENCE always means the perfect symbiosis of music and visuals. For every song there was a video or any other kind of visuals supporting the performance on stage which made it just perfect. The two vocalists, Dennis and Nina, their voices and the combination give the songs the extra. Also the band members themselves create a glamorous appearance on stage with their refined, stylish outfits as if they just came from a catwalk. But the visuals and perfect outfits do not have to hide anything, but just help create a magic world that the music of IN STRICT CONFIDENCE builds. The set presented at WGT has them all, from very old gems like ‘Prediction’ to the well-known and majestic ‘Forbidden Fruit’, must-perform ‘Zauberschloss’ that is accompanied by the enchanting dance performance of HayDee and Nina, further to the new songs ‘Mercy’ and ‘Somebody Else’s Dream’.
When the band came back on stage for the encore that included ‘Zauberschloss’ as classic and the already as well mentioned ‘Somebody Else’s Dream’, Dennis looks a bit done. No wonder, it got extremely hot in Westbad now, so the sauna started working. Dennis just looked into the crowd and said “Well, we are not 20 anymore”, took a short break, looked over the audience once more that started giggling and added “neither are you” with a mischievous smile. Nevertheless we all celebrated the last two songs and the headliner of the first day at the Westbad stage. // https://www.facebook.com/instrictconfidence // Setlist: 01. My Despair / 02. Used And Abused / 03. Kiss The Shadow / 04. Forbidden Fruit / 05. Mercy / 06. Seven Lives / 07. Set Me Free / 08. Morpheus / 09. Engelsstaub / 10. Prediction / 11. Zauberschloss / 12. Somebody Else’s Dream
White Lies - Agra (Nastja)
Being absolutely unsuccessful in finding anything to quench the thirst on the way from Westbad to Agra, we first made a short stop at the camp to stop the dehydration process and proceeded our night at the Agra hall where WHITE LIES already performed as midnight special. The hall was a little bit less packed than expected; nevertheless the audience was dancing and enjoying the songs performed by the Alternative Rock band from London. The band that was founded in 2007 released five albums, the last one, with the intuitive name ‘Five’, was just released this year. The setlist was a journey from the early beginnings with songs like ‘Death’ to the newest track, ‘Tokyo’ from 2019, and in between the performance of their creations so far.
WHITE LIES did a great live show pumped with a lot of energy and Alternative Rock guitar sound. Along with a cool light show the gig had everything it needs, though the performance at a more or less Goth festival is probably not their usual terrain. The songs invited to dance with closed eyes and the choice to let WHITE LIES play at WGT showed once more the diversity of that event. When the WHITE LIES gig was over, it was almost 2am. We just continued dancing at the Agra hall 4.2 and Agra café where two of the countless parties of the WGT took place. The decision to stay at Agra at that night was quite obvious - we were there already and our bed aka campsite was just a few hundred meters away from the dancefloor. Though our day was long, we managed to dance until the lights went on which actually happened earlier than expected - at half past four.
Well, we were ready to continue dancing, but probably it was not the worst thing to do and go get some sleep. The alarm was set for 10 am, so there was not much time left to catch some sleep. Day one - over and done. // https://www.whitelies.com // Setlist: 01. Time To Give / 02. Farewell To The Fareground / 03. There Goes Our Love Again / 04. Is My Love Enough / 05. Big TV / 06. Take It Out On Me / 07. Death / 08. Tokyo / 09. To Lose My Life / 10. Hold Back Your Love / 11. Bigger Than Us
All pictures by Daniela Vorndran (http://www.vorndranphotography.com / http://www.facebook.com/blackcatnet), Marko Jakob and Nastja Iz