Wave Gothic Treffen 14 -2005

Agra Hall - Leipzig, DE

Faun represent, and perhaps are the apitamy of, a new breed of musicians focusing on ancient methods of music and updating it with a new mentality and current production and amplification techniques.

"Faun" consider themselves Pagan Folk music but they definitely take it into a new realm. They are backed by a guy on a computer taking care of both their technical mixing side of things but also in some cases electronic backing tracks for the few songs that feature electronic drums and other layers of atmosphere.

For the rest of the music, it is all generated live. The male singer also plays a variety of rare old instruments from medieval times. Some look like mandolins, others are more ornate and are played with a bow despite being held like a guitar-type instrument.

Their is a tall percussionist with a nearly shaved head who switches various ancient instruments sometimes even playing what looks like a shooting bow with a violin type bow.

Two women are also part of the band and split duties as vocalists as well as instrumentalists. The blond woman plays all sorts of lutes, flutes, and bag pipes while the brunette plays the herdy gurdy in addition to her vocal parts. The two women really have amazing harmony and compliment each other perfectly.

It can readily be seen from their faces how much enjoyment they get from playing and they produce a very happy, soothing vibe that carries over to the audience.

The lights were low and moody, no blaring or bright lights at all which gave a more "fire-glow" or medieval atmosphere and tone to the overall scene. They had a large "Faun" banner hung up behind them which created a back-drop or scenery which only added to the mystique.

From what I hear these guys have really come along way. They used to play as street musicians at renaissance fairs and medieval gatherings (which seem to be quite common in Germany and other parts of Europe) and now have gained such noteriety that they are only a couple of bands down from the head-lining position on the final day of the festival.

Their position is well-deserved too. They have put out a total of four CD's so far and have also released a DVD with both live footage of concerts similar to this festival show seen here but also some more intimate sessions with them sitting around in what looks like a manger and basically "jamming" neo-pagan-folk style and this portion is pretty charming as it gives a bit of insite into the musicians' mentality and working styles.

They are obviously all really talented (and in my guess, professionally trained) musicians. The spirit they bring to the genre though is really something else. They have played on stages in between extremely different genres ranging from old-school gothic to terror-industrial-electro type acts and the audience always responds favorably.

It is quite interesting to learn things about history or previous peoples when you least expect to. "Faun" have given me a much deeper appreciation for older songs that they reimagine and also for their newly developed material using the pagan-folk instruments and mentality of old but take it somewhere very new.

Long Live the Old Ways!

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