review by Travis Baumann
The very first live performance of Blutengel went down on the first night of the festival. They were head-lining on Friday night and luckily, didn't go on until nearly 1:00 pm so we could stay at Park Buhne to watch the amazing performance Mila Mar put on and still make it down to the Agra.
This was our first time down to the Agra hall itself, having been to this area the day before to get our press photo-passes and check out the events schedule. The Agra was enormous and beyond it lay the great gothic hall filled beyond belief with gothic and industrial apparel, CD's, books, and various other booths of related coolness. The Agra hall itself was packed and had some of the most attitude-filled security guards checking the door that I have ever encountered. They searched all my camera equipment and everything on me despite me having press credentials readily displayed.
Once past the ridiculous searches we got inside and "Geh. Installation" were still performing their dance-troupe type material. After they finished we got into position for the Blutengel show. It was a good thing we had press passes because there was no where to move in the hall itself.
The stage took a while to set up. Chris had obviously spent some money on props and the like. The microphone stands were all metal spikey cross shapes with chains hanging from them all of which set an immediate mood. Two large screens of white stood in the back of the stage, one to each side, a large metal cross in the center of the stage stood between them. The cross was of a similar design to the microphone stands.
Katie came out first and she looked awesome. I had met her last year after the Terminal Choice show at Doomsday and she looked good then, but seemed even more beautiful now. Her voice sounded great. As she sang two female dancers came out from behind the screens and began dancing around the stage. Both were dressed in extremely cool looking cyber spikey bits. They frolicked, circling Katie as she sang.
Chris finally came out and joined Katie on stage while the female dancers now took up fire brands and whirled them about. One of the girls blew fire balls by spitting alcohol out of her mouth which was pretty cool to see - a scantily clad fire-spewing beauty.
At one point Chris and Katie left the stage and Gini took their place, performing a solo piece - one of my favorite tracks on the new CD. Her voice sounded so cool live and the song was very moving. Chris and Katie came back out and the three sang together and then Gini retired off stage as the show went on.
There were no musicians of any sort visable and the music was "piped in" with just the three singers alternating on stage. The dancers pulled out large knives and began "slashing" each other with blood flowing freely. After they were good and bloody, they went behind the screens and danced and acted out fits of violence while silouhetted on the screens (immediately bringing back Ogre's silhouette stage show from Doomsday which Chris witnessed last year).
The press passes allowed you to photograph from the photo-pit area in-between the audience and the stage for only the first three songs and then you had to move back into the crowd. The security dudes made us move out of the photo pit area immediately in front of the stage after these three songs but allowed us to remain to the side of the stage rather than get forced back into the massive crowd which allowed us a good vantage point through-out the entire performance.
At this point, the dancers went to clean off the blood. Chris and company continued to do all of the best tracks off the new album. My stand-out tracks were definitely Gini's solo piece - "Seelenschmerz", "I'm dying alone", and "Children of the Night". The dancers re-emerged with metal breast plates on and one of the girls introduced a hand-held grinding wheel and went to work on the other's plated mid-section moving down close to her pelvic region. This sort of thing has become common place with bands like Genitorturers and Bozo Porno Circus in the States but was still cool to see.
Overall, it was really cool to experience Blutengel live. You could tell from the massive crowd and their reaction that it was a very popular event at this festival. I found the performance art cool but not stuff I hadn't seen before. Katie and Gini were the highlights of the show for me personally, both sounded amazing and did an awesome job with their live vocals and were very attractive and fun for the eyes as well.
Click on the
logo for more coverage