My first concert in this new year – and this new decade – was this past weekend and it is worth it to take a closer look into what was actually going on!
On the 18th of January, www.lightinmirror.de and I went to Brunswick’s most charming underground club called B58. To my absolute disgrace, I must admit that we only went there because I desperately wanted to check the interview (and subsequent concert) with Chaosbay off of my to-do list (check btw!). We had an amazing evening with all three bands nevertheless into which I intend to give you some insight now!
No matter how long you have been playing on stages and no matter how many people are in front of said stage, it is never easy to be the opener of the evening! Especially when there not a lot of people present and you have to animate them to actually come to the front of the stage…
In terms of that, the guys from Lady Crank surely had the hardest start of the evening. The band from Hanover was pretty busy convincing the quite unmotivated audience of their uncompromising musical style.
Their style can be described as a mixture of punk, metal and post-hardcore, which I, to be honest, did not find that captivating.
Despite that, the band managed to give full power to the performance, which climaxed into the guitarist making his way into the audience and playing off-stage. This kind of dedication led the audience to actually come out of its shell and to start dancing. Fans of almost raw and and straight-forward music would have had their share here.
Even if it was not to my taste, I do think that it was a very well played gig, even though the drums were a bit too powerfully calibrated. But who knows? Maybe that was intentional.
If I had to give the band a suggestion what they could do to improve, I would suggest to experiment with a second guitar. That would certainly push the sound a bit more into the metal corner, but would also enrich it tremendously. I do honestly hope that the band does not lose its rebellious way of playing and will some day maybe destroy a stage – that proved to be quite beneficial for other bands in the past.
As a complete contrast to Lady Crank, the stage was next graced by the artists of Soulsplitter.
I am consciously using the word „artist“, because the stylistic mixture they showed was more a wholesome artwork than a concert. It started with an intro, which reminded me of one of those crime story games, wen on to virtuous improvisations of the instruments and was made complete by an interesting contrast between the two singers. The whole thing was framed by a tremendous use of the fog machine, much to the dismay of my poor photographer.
Quite surprising to me were the Jazz influences. It was a bit as if a time traveler from the 1920s met a prog-metal-combo that predominantly played Opeth and Queen!
Looking back I can say that I was very entertained by the confident play through of a setlist, that kept on surprising me. Every time I thought I had a grasp of what this band was a bout, they presented some kind of twist. To entertain a crowd in this manner is a sign of high musical understanding and spot-on intuition.
In that context however, I do not think that every person present that evening really understood what Soulsplitter were actually trying to do, since, even with all the praise, what they were doing was something very specific.
Nevertheless will I be going to see them again live if the opportunity presents itself!
As I said in the beginning, we pretty much went just because of Chaosbay. I have been following this band for at least five years now, but I never managed to actually see them in concert.
A live-experience is always radically different from the experience of listening to the CD, since the live-experience will always have a more immediate impact on the audience (duh, they are right in front of you!). If I have been listening to a band for a long time an finally get to see them live, it is always quite the head of water for the bands. I either think they were not worth it or I come out the experience a bigger than before.
In terms of Chaosbay’s live performance, I could not have been more ecstatic!
The performance elevated itself from the other bands simply by they confident and highly professional demeanor to every, sometimes minor, detail. The band seem calm, routined and delivered an absolutely captivating stage-presence, which caught me immediately and never let me go. I was just on the side and not very close to the stage!
The setlist was very well conceived to take the audience on a musical journey. At first, I was a bit skeptical, since there are some Chaosbay songs which have more calm parts to them and oftentimes bands do not manage to take their audience with them onto harder/faster parts. That was not the case here whatsoever and one might even come under the impression that the band members do not do anything else besides playing the stages in this constellation.
In terms of style, the band manages to merge hard guitar-riffs with catchy melodies and virtuous drum parts, that won’t leave anyone standing still. Powerful growl parts are occasionally contrasted with emphatic clean-vocals, that create an immensely dramatic effect. Though you find some stylistic parallels to the relevant prog-metal/rock bands, Chaosbay has managed to establish their own distinctive sound that is still unparalleled in the scene. We will surely hear more from them, of that I am sure!
More on Chaosbay will also be available here! Stay tuned for the interview we did 😉