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Theatre of Tragedy, Gothminister, Catastrophe Ballet

Stadt / City Hamburg 
Land / Country Deutschland 
Web www.theatreoftragedy.com, www.gothminister.com, www.catastropheballet.de
Datum / Date05.04.2006 

Fans will hardly believe it, but the concert with Theater of Tragedy – support Gothminister and Catastrophe Ballet – had to be shifted from Markthalle into the smaller MARX. The advance sales didn´t go too well to fill Markthalle. Some might say, ToT are too good to play on such a small stage, others might say that MARX is cosy. Still all the bands gave real professional performances in this club.

Wow, great. You cannot describe the Gothminister gig at MARX better with one phrase. First, even before the Norwegians entered stage, the small version of singer Björn Brem´s alias Gothminister´s skull stick attracted the eyes. It was, as usually, attached to the microphone stick and welcomed the audience. When Gothminister started around 20.45 h not too many people were there. What a shame, or better, bad luck! Bad for the five Norwegians who really deserved more audience. Gothminister played with Lacrimosa last year in front of 800 people, and also at M´éra Luna Festival they had a lot of audience in front of their stage. But the cool Norwegians didn´t care, or they didn´t show it. As experienced performers they put on a great 45 min show, bad luck for those who missed Gothminister. Without doubt they are great musicians, and despite lack of audience they created a special atmosphere at MARX. The combination of Björn´s powerful warm voice and the instruments filled the space, the lights worked well with the music and added to the atmosphere. The fans reacted to every song with loud cheers. Also during the songs people displayed enthusiasm, danced in front of the stage or even in the back rows. Gothminister played many songs from their recent album „Empire of Dark Salvation“, e.g. the new single „Monsters“ und „Dark Salvation“, but also older material, „March of the dead“, „Hatred“ and „Devil“.
Singer Björn´s performance was great, sometimes he hid behind his cylinder, then he stood majestically, arms wide spread, on stage. Hard to believe that this band isn´t really successful yet. Music, show, lights, voice... everything fits so nicely.

Catastrophe Ballet
What a name. Are there ballerinas on stage? No no. Those four “Hamburgers” also don´t wear tutus but just average black clothes. Catastrophe Ballet have been existing for 17 years already. Their music style is called „Future Industrial Gothic“, and they released several CDs at different labels. Since May their new release „…all beauty dies“ is out. That night CB was the most exotic band. Their music puts you back to the 80s, and you could see that in the audience, too. A big hole in front of the stage, and generally the audience shied away during their show. Every attempt by sympathetic singer Eric Burton to fill the space in front of the stage failed, even the offer to give away two beers. Spotted in the crowd: Tilo Wolff. The Lacrimosa-Mastermind honoured MARX with his presence during the CB show. With the last song fronter Eric gave everything: despite the lazy audience he danced on stage with a neon light. The band offered a professional and technically flawless performance in their hometown Hamburg. Perhaps in Leipzig they will be better received (June 2 with „Witt“ and „Combichrist“) and gain the acceptance they deserve. Would be nice.

Theatre of Tragedy
„Back to the roots“ seems to be the new motto of the headliners. Theatre of Tragedy continue their older works with their new album „Storm“. In recent years ToT tried different styles, and unfortunately their fans didn´t appreciate that. Their last show in Hamburger Markthalle four years ago didn´t sell too well, and this year they had to move to the smaller MARX. ToT have returned from their experimentation trip to their musical roots that made them famous ten years ago. Since 2004 Nell replaces Liv Kristin as frontwoman beside Raymond. Her voice´s beauty is similar to her predecessor´s, yet she misses the theatre bit. Still the masculine world seemed to get chills when Nell in her corselet bent over ... no problem for her to encourage the audience, and the room was filled with people who moved somehow. Some did headbanging, some danced. ToT gave a good performance. The chemistry between Nell and Raymond seems to work, and on stage they completed each other almost perfectly. Their musical capacities are as good as they were, no matter if old or new songs. Lights and fog effect were a little bit too much. Probably it had worked playing in Markthalle, but not in MARX. The fans didn´t care and cheered to ToT after every song. A fan shouted: “You´re great!” and received promptly a “thanks” from stage. If ToT continue like the new album suggests, they will surely win old fans back and win a lot of new ones.

Maike Eisenmenger, translation: Klaudia Weber

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