Wave Gothic Treffen - 14: 2005

Park Buhne: Leipzig, DE

We first discovered "Atrocity" through their collaboration with "Das Ich" the gothic electro band back in the mid- '90's.  We had been listening to "Das Ich" for some time and were not really into metal music so much back then but still found the mixture of styles very interesting.  Years later we have come to appreciate metal to a much greater degree and at the same time "Atrocity" have explored a number of additional moods and styles that incorporate more gothic and electronic atmospheres.

In 1997 "Atrocity" put out an album entitled "Werk 80" where they covered popular songs from the 1980's.  At the time that was their first collaboration with "Theater of Tragedy's" star singer Liv Kristine (she would later marry Alexander Krull and form a new project with "Atrocity" known as "Leaves' Eyes" - which is absolutely awesome).

After years of fandom, we finally had a chance to see "Atrocity" live on one of the days of the Wave Gothic Treffen festival in Leipzig, Germany in 2005.  One of our favorite venues there is the Park Buhne outdoor amphitheatre located in the center of a beautiful park. 

This concert was to be a "Werk 80's" set.  I was hoping to see the new album "Atlantis" live but I will take what I can get.

Alexander Krull, the lead singer and Master Mind behind "Atrocity", has become quite a hero of mine in terms of his own band but also his work on producing and mastering literally dozens of great bands from Germany and Europe.  

One of my favorite bands has become his collaboration with his wife in the project "Leaves' Eyes" as stated above but I also appreciated her involvement in "Atrocity" so I hoped to see her here as she sings on about half of the songs on the 80's project.

I find the rest of the guys in "Atrocity" very entertaining both on CD and especially live.  They are very metal with long hair (all except one of the guitarists).  Alexander, himself, has ridiculously long hair as can be seen from the photographs.

Some of the songs they cover are "Tainted Love", "Shout", "Send me an Angel", and "Wild Boys".  They did a number of 80's hits not on the CD and one of my two personal high-points in the set was "Cold Black Days" their single off their non-cover CD "Atlantis".    I really love this song and it is more mellow than the other songs off their new album so it fit into the 80's set nicely.  It has a really neat melancholy feel and for me is full of emotion that comes through in the vocals/lyrics the most, but also has some nice keyboard atmospheres that set the mood.

The second high-light for me was that for the final songs of the set, Liv came out and sang with Alexander.  This went over huge with the crowd as these two have sort of captured a near "tabloid" following in the European scene with her leaving "Theater of Tragedy" and getting married in a castle with Alexander and now they have a son (an heir to the metal-throne?) so it is sort of a fantasy Gothic-Metal love story that the fans have really latched on to, myself included.

Alexander is known for having extremely beautiful women wearing crazy cyber-gothic outfits on his album covers and to continue that style-motif, he had two cage-wall sections and two women dressed in tight-fitting silver and black outfits dancing behind these in the background. 

The bassist (who has been there since the beginning of the band) lent backup vocals for a number of songs and added an energetic rhythm with his slap-bass technique (which seems rather unique for this style of music).  One of the guitarists was all hair flying around while the other had a more stoic focused approach to playing. Both of them laid down studio-perfect performances.

It was really great to get to see them live and see how they play and interact.  I thought Alexander was really cool and this was the first time seeing Liv in the flesh as well (later I got to see all of them again as "Leaves' Eyes" in Los Angeles opening up for Metal Meisters "Blind Guardian"!  I absolutely love "Leaves'" and "Atrocity" as well).  They should have a new album out soon I hope; I heard Dita Von Teese is the cover model for the artwork so it seems he is keeping within past expectations art-wise. 

I like the  juxtaposition of some of their mellow stuff with the super heavy and find both "Atlantis" and "Gemini" had a good mix of sounds, although "Atlantis" is definitely the harder of the two discs so he may stay in that vein for the new stuff.

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