11th to 13th August 2023
M’era Luna Festival 2023 Day 1 with Absolute Body Control, Amduscia, Antiage, A Projection, Diary Of Dreams, Girls Under Glass, In Extremo, Intent:Outtake, Joachim Witt, L’Âme Immortelle, Megaherz, Mesh, Neuroticfish, Project Pitchfork, Rabia Sorda, Rave The Reqviem, Tanzwut, Solar Fake, Versus Goliath, Ville Valo, Wisborg
After last year’s sold out festival it was about time for members of the Dark Goth Scene from all over the world to gather in Hildesheim to celebrate at M’era Luna Festival again.
This year, the festival grounds layout had been changed, again. The club stage seems to be an established one, while the hangar is being used for readings and the fashion shows. Those who had already arrived on Friday had the opportunity to attend various readings before hitting the dancefloor. Again, the festival was almost sold out and so, 25,000 people gathered on the airfield on Saturday.
Newcomers ANTIAGE opened the festival on the main stage around 11:00, while the club stage was opened by INTENT:OUTTAKE at 11:20. The moody weather was in favour of VERSUS GOLIATH and A PROJECTION, so folks in front of the stages stayed dry. Swedish RAVE THE REQVIEM had attracted many fans to the main stage and people danced to their great mix of Industrial-Electro music and almost nobody fled from the infield when a heavy rain came down. Those who gathered in front of the club stage were lucky, first of all a 700 sqm large Magic Sky protected them from sun and rain and the rain stopped in time for WISBORG. The band was in a party mood and asked the fans who had come to see them and who just had thought, one could check them out, since they were on stage. WISBORG invited the crowd to their upcoming tour and left the stage under loud cheering from the crowd.
By 13:30 the infield suddenly started filling up significantly. It was time for Berlin based TANZWUT who really stirred the crowd with their mix of medieval style music and a tiny dose of NDH. Meanwhile, those who were more into Electro gathered at the club stage to have a party with Belgium based ABSOLUTE BODY CONTROL. NDH sounds from the main stage drew fans of harder sounds to party with MEGAHERZ, who seemed to have some technical problems before they started. “Hello FOH” is quite an unusual announcement, but it seemed to have served the purpose. During their show, the band made several announcements and thanked the organizers for inviting them this year. Last year, the band had to cancel due to health reasons. MEGAHERZ also reminded the crowd about the release of their new album the previous day and played on of their new singles asking the crowd to perform the chorus. Unfortunately, a thunderstorm came down during the band’s set, but their loyal fand stayed in front of the stage and partied through wind gushes and heavy rain with the band.
Erk Aicrag, a member of HOCICO, entered the club stage with his side project RABIA SORDA. The style is really difficult to describe but Rockers, Punkers, Cyber Goths and Electro fans seemed to like the band’s sound a lot. As soon as the band had ended their set, many streamed towards their accommodation to change their soaked clothes, while fans of Dark Wave gathered in front of the main stage for DIARY OF DREAMS, who must have brought many of their loyal fans, if you counted all the band shirts on the festival grounds. GIRLS UNDER GLASS took over the club stage before NEUROTICFISH attracted fans of Electro and Future-Pop to the club stage.
Those who love great melodies and orchestrated elements, streamed to the Infield to dance L’AME IMMORTELLE’s beats, before it was time for JOACHIM WITT. Many in the crowd were speculating, if PETER HEPPNER would join him for ‘Die Flut’. While Witt had dressed in his finest suits, Heppner came on stage in cargo-shorts and a shirt, to perform the song with him and to be honest, I had the impression that Heppner seemed to be out of practice during the first parts of the song. WITT often announced “We have no time; we need to hurry” before he started the next song but the band finished their set just in time. As soon as WITT finished on the main stage, Mexican Electro band AMDUSCIA entered the club stage and their Aggrotech beats pushed the crowd.
PROJECT PITCHFORK were on main stage attracting those who are in Dark Electro. Many had waited in the front of the club stage all day, to secure a spot in the front for SOLAR FAKE. The bands unique style of melodic Future-Pop, Industrial and EBM elements attracted many, even those who are not that much into Electronic Music. Then it was time for Medieval Rock fand, to conquer the infield for IN EXTREMO, who delivered a hell of a show. ‘Sternhagelvoll’ was definitely the loudest song and the infield was a sea of waving arms and raised hands.
Unfortunately, LONDON AFTER MIDNIGHT had cancelled their performance and MESH had to jump in. The Bristol based Synth-Pop band played the club stage, while fans of Love Metal waited for VILLE VALO to appear on the main stage. The former HIM frontman had brought a set list that alternated between one song of his solo releases and one song from HIM releases and a total of 15 songs. Looking at the video screen, you could see that the infield was again filled to the max twenty-three years after VILLE VALO played the first M’era Luna with HIM. After the last tuned faded, smiling people left either for the campground or the hangar disco, expressing the hope, that the weather would be more favourable on Sunday.
All pictures by Daniela Vorndran (http://www.vorndranphotography.com / http://www.facebook.com/blackcatnet)