Lunch was served at dinner: the "Hafenklang", located directly at the harbor, welcomed one of the legends of the 70s underground and the New Yorker No Wave: Lydia Lunch with her band BIG SEXY NOISE, and thus a big, sexy concert in a small, dark, well-visited club. To heat up the evening was the job of the Hamburg-based band DER REST which still must form the legends - but could have the chance on their side.
Der Rest joins with Lydia Lunch the love of language. In both the poetry is in the first row. The music - as in this year published, superior CD of Der Rest - is the body and the vibration on which the lingustic emotions awake to life.
On the aforementioned album yet much more acoustic and because of that apparently subtle they offered in the Hafenklang with Phil Taraz on guitar, Laurent Vianès on bass and Anton Stoeger on drums a rocky, powerful version of their music. Electrically, they offered a convincing and strong performance, although here the language doesn´t stay no longer in the foreground - a tribute to the volume and the fact that rock-music always has something to do with showbiz.
Regarding the "show" became obvious a kind of introverted shyness which was reflected on the CD from the music, too, and presented a certain vulnerability and intimacy. On stage, intimacy quickly can degenerate into exhibitionistic superficiality, or the opposite: it is not felt only as such, but as a restraint that requires from the audience much more concentration which is perceived by some in terms of the entertainment factor as complicated.
Lydia Lunch has a different concept. Very presence at her side and with her in the foreground was the Briton James Johnston, who otherwise plays - same as drummer Ian White - in the London band Gallon Drunk and as well for years until 2008 with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.
Lydia is the show in the blood, and this predisposition, she lived not only in music but also in movies as an actress. Introversion is less her nature, and "big" and "sexy" she presented herself verbally charming, sexual and provocative. Only of "noise" could be no question, because what she and her three men offered, was hand-made rock`n´roll at its best.
The definition of "authentic" and "real fuckin good rock" has been confirmed here. From the first note, everything revolved around sex. This happens when one sets the tone as Lydia. But sex and rock`n´roll - it was always something that could prove to be closely related. Introvert was only the guitarist who could hardly be solved from the shadows of the background. No idea who it was, because, yes, Terry Edwards was also announced (Tom Waits, Spiritualized, Tindersticks, Gallon Drunk) on organ and sax. It was certainly not he.
The excessive elements of a rock show in particular were acted out by James Johnston, who liked to roll with his instrument on the ground and almost ecstatically to fall into the audience. For this he was incited by Lydia: "Get out your cock and rock it!" All this less modern or avant-garde, rather from psychedelic to blues, pure good stuff.
Apart from the direct and at times frivolous announcements of Lydia to the audience, surely only few from the guests cared about the sung word and lyrics. Instead, the crowd was standing close together shaken and deeply stirred by the rhythm of the vibes, seduced by the mood of the pure retro atmosphere.
That's rock `n'roll, baby. Not long to think, fuck it. As with anything, even this was used by the business. But such a small club and so much underground - how much importance is there to the money? These beautiful moments in which everything still has the appearance as if we could be human.