The D-Club (why did they rename Docks?!) was only half full. Last time Cradle Of Filth played there, it was packed. Just an observation. I suspect this may have had something to do with the slightly high price of the tickets, in combination with the bad weather and the fact that it was a working day, but this didn’t seem to affect Moonspell at all. The Haunted weren’t playing, unfortunately, since they were busy with their own tour. You could tell the crowd wasn’t pleased, since the posters clearly said otherwise.
Moonspell compensated for that with a very cheerful Fernando Ribiero and a first class sound. Little gothic, lots of metal and no nonsense. Moonspell played a 45 minute set, which covered the entire Moonspell history. Despite the calls for an encore, the Portuguese had to leave the stage. Very good show! This part of the concert gets 9/10.
During the break we noticed that Cradle had dressed their roadies in monks’ cloaks, two of them complete with the appropriate hairdo. Bass player Dave Pybus wasn’t joining them for the tour and it remains to be seen, whether he will ever be playing with Cradle Of Filth again. Since Dani has never had any problems replacing musicians on short notice and in doing so, has discovered a lot of talent, it will be interesting to see what happens.
When Cradle Of Filth finally appeared after a 30 minute break, the stage was adorned with all sorts of flamboyant decorations. Fake torches, statues, a video screen behind Sarah and every kind of light effect imaginable awaited the protagonists. The band immediately turned their backs on the audience (a bit like a sinister Backstreetboys choreography) and they all kicked off simultaneously. What stood out, was the fact that the replacement bass player looked very young indeed, James McIlroy cut a considerable length off his hair and Dani Filth really let go during the holidays. The somewhat unfavourable outfits didn’t help at all. Still funny... Well, with „Gilded Cunt“ Dani screamed like Hell from the start, but somehow the song sounded a lot fuller and more aggressive on the album. The rest of the band did a great job, but that was all. Dani and musicians who take their job seriously. It didn’t really come across as a proper band. There were also some distracting extra’s to the show, like a man in a gargoyle costume, a moderately attractive woman attempting some rope climbing acrobatics (why not hire an artist and a proper one at that?) and a 5 metre high wooden figure, which I guess was supposed to be the Grim Reaper. Dani was running around the stage for most of the time and his voice wasn’t in top condition compared to the shows he did in the spring. The red glowing eyes of the Grim Reaper wannabe, of which the left eye had a loose contact, were a cause of great laughter in the two front rows. All in all, the musical performance of the band wasn’t bad, but because of everything around it and the noticeably bad atmosphere, the performance was almost entirely pushed to the background. They only played one encore, but after „From Cradle To Enslave“, the audience didn’t even ask for any more. This concert was honestly not up to the band’s usual standard and bored the audience. What a shame! Considering the fact that I can’t, with all the good will in the world, give this concert any more than 4/10, the final tally of the two concerts after deduction of a point for the absence of The Haunted, comes to 6/10.