Helium Vola was the big opening night's Gala act. It was with a heavy heart I made the decision to forego Moonspell, whom I love and are awesome live. It was not quite as difficult a decision but only by a margin to also pass up DKAY.COM (which also kick some serious ass) to assure ourselves being able to see Helium Vola. I'd have to say the only difficulty of the entire Wave Gotik Treffen event is deciding what bands to miss.
Helium Vola is fantastic on CD. A true genius, Ernst Horn definitely does not let his fans and followers of his work in QNTAL down with this project. Supporting Ernst on stage were four singers through-out the performance. Most of the songs involved the main female singer (what a great find in musical talent in her) and two men accompanying her but for a few songs another woman joined the stage lineup.
Ernst was a mad-man working his many synths built up in front and back of him but turned so his profile was to the audience rather than buried behind the keyboards. He had at least three tiers of instruments on both sides and he would turn and either play entire pieces live or trigger the necessary elements and return to his other keyboards. I have been a fan of his work with Deine Lakaien now for years and enjoy his solo projects as well so it was really cool for me to finally see him in the flesh.
The main singer was very interesting looking, immediately bringing to mind characters from Dario Argento films with the dramatic lighting and her facial expressions. Not one of his murder victims but one of his strong female protagonists. The other two singers sported facial hair and looked pretty dignified and well dressed.
A screen in the back had psychedelic mood enhancing visuals to add to the light show. The stage performance was not theatrical or performance art in any way which I was fine with as the voices were so perfect. For this being the first time ever for Helium Vola to perform, they did a flawless job musically and vocally, it was really cool to be there.
They played nearly every song off of the full length album which I had become very familiar with by this time. It wasn't until the encore that they did Ominus Mundi Creatura which was just awesome live with the driving powerful dance beat and then their voices all joined in unison. Even with my camera equipment draped around my neck I had to let loose and dance.
I was ecstatic after the performance and left the Agra feeling high and satisfied. I couldn't stop singing the songs on the way home and the next day through-out the second day of the festival. Despite missing other favorites it was totally worth it to have seen and heard Helium Vola.
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