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13/04/2012 :  - REWIND EASTER festival DAY 2 with D.A.F, Covenant, Neon Judgement,...

REWIND EASTER festival DAY 2 with D.A.F, Covenant, Neon Judgement,...

Concert


[90/100]   
13/04/2012, Philippe BLACKMARQUIS

After a first day devoted to postpunk and guitar-oriented bands, the second day of REWIND EASTER is the day of EBM, synth-pop and electro!

The Juggernauts

To open the program, The Juggernauts, a brand new Belgian EBM formation led by Borg (also in The Klinik and boss of Bodybeats) and Glenn (from Radical G), are giving their first gig ever. Quite a number of people have already gathered so early in the Vooruit concert hall to discover this new band. On stage, both Borg and Glenn are wearing black helmets and black army jackets, just to make things clear about their music: pure, old school EBM from the 80s, with references like Front242, KMFDM, Klinik, Nitzer Ebb, etc. Borg sings and Glenn, oddly enough, doesn't play keyboards but electronic drums. In their setlist, they performed "Phoenix", their only release so far, which you can find on the Out Of Line "Awake The Machines Compilation Volume 7 ". Borg's voice is amazingly strong and the reaction of the spectators is very positive. A good start for the second day!

During an interview after the concert, Borg announced that the first album of the band will be called "The Juggernauts... Are Coming" and will be released by the end of the year. The band will also be playing at the "Industrial Boom Festival" in Budapest, Hungary at the end of the month, together with Front242, Neon Judgement, Absolute Body Control and 32Crash - a Belgian invasion of Hungary...

Below, you can watch the short interview of Borg and the live footage of The Juggernauts performing an unreleased song: "Damaged Illusions"

RadicalG

A few minutes later, Glenn Keteleer comes back on stage, but alone this time and disguised in his RadicalG avatar. A very strange look, half of his head painted in black and the other half in white. His extended ears make him look like a dark "Mr. Spock". He stands on the drums podium with his machines and his microphone and after a few songs, "Guardian" and "Body next to me", something magical occurs... We become hypnotized by the music, a well-crafted crossover of dark-electro-techno-EBM-pop with skanky vocals, and by Glenn's attitude on stage, very sensual and captivating thanks to his mime gestures.

The video clips strengthen this impression with a gothic imagery based on the devil, fire, sex and religion. "Slipped Away" sounds a bit like Depeche Mode and "Lucifer" and "Dinner With Satan" are reminiscent of Iamx. The last tracks are instrumental and more electro-techno oriented. RadicalG might be the missing link between the 'dark scene' and the techno/electro scene! Anyway: a very interesting gig, that makes us want to discover more!

Check the video of "Lucifer" here. Below, a video filmed at the REWIND festival with greetings by RadicalG and a live footage of "Slipped Away".

Sigue Sigue Sputnik Electronic

At 18:30, it was time to launch the "Love Missile"!... Pro memorie: Sigue Sigue Sputnik were a British New Wave band created in 1982 by the former Generation X bassist Tony James. The band had three UK Top 40 hit singles, including the song "Love Missile F1-11". Tony James recruited Martin Degville after meeting him in the YaYa clothes shop in Kensington Market where he was working. Now only Martin is left of the original lineup and when he takes the stage with his revival band, Sigue Sigue Sputnik Electronic, it's carnival!

Martin is dressed like a porn cyber transsexual alien with huge fake tits and his famous colorful feathers on the head. The first songs, "Rockit Miss USA", "Alien Christ" and "21st Century Boy" set the scene: a 100% glam-disco-punk delivered by a sort of Village People band with complete kitsch looks. But who cares: the idea is to have fun and little by little, the audience starts to dance. After "Dancerama" and "Success", the band plays a cover of Bowie's "Jean Genie" and to close the set, it's the song we were all waiting for, the band's first single, "Love Missile F1-11". Released in February 1986 and produced by Giorgio Moroder, it was a major hit in several countries in Europe! A major part of the audience sings the chorus "Shoot it up..." and moves to the beat, making this song a first highlight for the day!

Check the greeting of Martin Degville, followed by the live footage of "21st Century Boy".

Absolute Body Control

Back to some serious stuff with a very famous Belgian band: Absolute Body Control. Having previously played in minor punk and new wave bands, Dirk Ivens formed the band in 1980 as a project more influenced by the prototype synthpop sound being produced by Suicide and D.A.F. In 1981, Eric Van Wonterghem joined the band and they released a number of cassettes, one 7" ("Is There An Exit?") but no studio albums until both protagonists joined The Klinik and started several projects. Later, two compilations were released, "Eat This" in 1993 and "Lost/Found" in 2005. Finally, the band re-united in 2006 and released the CD "Shattered Illusion" on Daft Records.

"I Wasn't There" is the first song of the set. Ivens and Van Wonterghem are both at the front of the stage, dressed in casual wear and very minimalistic video's are projected behind them. A complete contrast with the previous carnival! Here, only the music is important. And what music: dark, throbbing minimal electro, perfectly revisited with modern sounds and effects. The setlist consists of a majority of older songs like "Is There An Exit" and "So Hard". Dirk Ivens indulges in his usual dance style somewhere between spasmodic cramps and robotic coldness. On "Give Me Your Hands" and "Into The Light", the fans start to nod their head and are swept away by the hypnotic atmosphere. During the encore, the band will play a cover of "Warm Leatherette" and their recent single/EP "Surrender No Resistance".

Here you can watch the live footage of "Give Me Your Hands", introduced by Dirk and Eric themselves in a backstage video!

Crash Course In Silence

We are staying in the minimalistic electro style with another legendary band from the 80s: Crash Course In Science (CCIS). They are the only American band on the bill and came all over from Philadelphia for a mini-tour of 4 European dates, among which two in Belgium. In the last 2 years, they played no less than 5 times in our country! CCIS was formed in 1979 by Dale Feliciello, Mallory Yago and Michael Zodorozny to explore performance art and music. Choosing toy or homemade instruments, they created a unique sound. After the single "Cakes In The Home", they recorded "Signals From Pier Thirteen" in 1981. The songs 'Cardboard Lamb' and 'Flying Turns' were club favorites during the early 80's. Last year they released the fantastic CD "Near Marineland".

At the REWIND FEST, Michael Zodorozny was accompanied by original producer John Wicks and "The Enchantress of Bioluminosity", Andrea Beeman. Their show is more an art performance than a conventional concert. Andrea is wearing a whole series of luminous gadgets and the projected video's alternate between black and white pictures and reproductions of paintings.

After two songs, "Second Glance" and "Cardboard Lamb", it is clear that the band has reworked all songs with modern sounds and the effect is stunning! The music is reminiscent of Talking Heads, Suicide or even B52, but with a prototechno, even industrial edge. Their approach of music is astonishing, childish but so fresh and so touching! Next comes a new, unreleased song, "Pantsed". Then Michael sings the hypnotic "No More Hollow Doors" and Andrea comes back for the hopping "It Cost's to be Austere". Another unreleased track "A Lot To Be Desired" shows clearly that the band is not nostalgic and is working on new material. With "Factory Forehead" (incredible industrial track) and "Near Marineland", the tension grows to lead to the final peak: "Flying Turns". One more great concert by CCIS and we are looking forward to their new CD!

Check the short interview filmed after the show, in which Michael Zodorozny talks about the tour and "Flying Turns", followed by a live footage of the song

Neon Judgement

At this time (10pm), the big crowd has arrived and the concert hall is full. The organizers decide to open the balcony to allow a better comfort for the fans. Next on the bill is The Neon Judgement, a Belgian band formed in Leuven in 1981 by Dirk Da Davo (keyboards/vocalist) and TB Frank (guitarist/vocalist). They combined new-wave with industrial and minimal electro to create a new musical genre.

It's precisely with their first single, "Factory Walk", released in 1980, that the band start their show. As usual, Dirk Da Davo is standing left on the stage with his keyboard stand and computers and Frank TB is on the right, with his guitar and amp. Again as usual, Dirk seems to be perfectly fit while Frank is regularly looking for his glass of booze. Rock attitude... After "Too Cold To Breathe", the band plays "Leash", the single from their last CD "Smack" (2009), followed by "The Man" and the beautiful "Chinese Black". Da Davo is using a backing track for the drums but most of the synths parts are performed live, which gives a freshness to the sound. Of course all vocals and guitar are played live.

During Nion Nion, the Vooruit hall becomes a techno rave party with hypnotic drums and stroboscope lights. The last songs of the set are pure hits: "Miss Brown", "Concrete" and of course "TV Treated'". The latter is welcomed by the audience with screams and shouts. Frank TB sits on one stage speaker to play the guitar riff and when Da Davo brings his famous synth phrases, it's an explosion in the hall. In the encore, the band will play a very "Tomorrow In The Papers" allowing fans to sing the main riff of the song all together. A great gig!

Check the video of "TV Treated" filmed by doctorwhonico from the balcony.

Below, an exclusive footage of the song filmed from the back of the stage.

Covenant

No need to present Covenant, one of the spearheads of dark synthpop. Formed in 1986 in Helsingborg, Sweden, after a concert of Front242 in Malmö, the band started with distorted EBM music influenced by Belgian EBM but also by Kraftwerk and Nitzer Ebb. Later they evolved towards a 'softer' Futurepop and gained worldwide success with huge club hits like "I Stand Alone", "Call The Ships To Port" or "Ritual Noise". In 2011, they released one of the best album of the year: "Modern Ruin". They are currently working on a new album.

On stage, the lineup of the band consists of Eskil Simonsson (lead vocals, lead composition, engineering, lyrics, production, synths), Daniel Myer, also in Haujobb (engineering, production, synths, additional vocals) and Daniel Jonasson, also in Dupont (synths). Joakim Montelius (lead lyrics, composition, production, synths, additional vocals) no longer tours with the band and focusses on studio work. Covenant in concert, it's like a greatest hits club party: from beginning to end, you can't help but dance and sing along. The first song, "Feedback", dates back from the early EBM days (the LP "Sequencer" in 1996). With his usual stylish look, Simonsson is a great showman: he immediately takes the audience in the palm of his hands. The next songs, among which "Bullet", "Judge Of My Domain" and "20Hz" set the concert hall on fire and the festival arrives at its peak: a musical communion between a band and its audience.

After "Ritual Noise", "The Men" (remix) and "Stalker", Covenant play one new song, "The Passion Game" (working title) and I must say it sounded great! Get a sneak preview of the song here. The end of the set came with "Call The Ships To Port" and the band came back to play "Lightbringer", from "Modern Ruin". This song is clearly Daniel Myers' opportunity to get some attention: encouraged by Simonsson, he comes at the front of the stage and shows an incredible strength and energy. The final song is of course "I Stand Alone" and the show ends in an orgasm...

Video of "The Men":

Video of Lightbringer:

D.A.F.

At this moment of the festival, it's 1:30am but it's not finished yet! Here comes D.A.F, the headlining band. Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft or D.A.F. is an influential German minimal EBM band from Düsseldorf, formed in 1978 featuring mainly Gabriel "Gabi" Delgado-López (vocals) and Robert Görl (drums, percussion, electronic instruments). D.A.F.'s most famous song is the grimly sarcastic "Der Mussolini" from the album "Alles ist gut", a pulsing dance song. After a reunion album in 2003 (‘15 neue DAF Lieder’), the band returned in 2010 to tour and also released a new single 'Du Bist DAF', limited to 2010 copies.

If you have never seen D.A.F. in concert, you are missing something. It's incredible what (only) two persons can do on a minimalistic stage. Robert Görl plays very strong acoustic drums, with his typical raw and unsequenced style that brings the backing electronic synth tracks to life. But most of all, Gabi is a true stage animal. During the whole concert, he walks all across the stage, screaming and shouting his vocals with huge intensity. After starting with "Verschwende Deine Jugend" and "Ich und die Wirklichkeit", they immediately play their biggest hit: "Der Mussolini" and all of a sudden, the complete crowd starts dancing like crazy. In the first rows, people are even indulging in a pogo. Later, "Ich Will", "Muskel" and "Sato-Sato" bring the tension to an even higher level.

The provocative and sensual EBM of D.A.F. is perfectly efficient with songs like "Alle Gegen Alle", "Nachtarbeit" or "Al Wär's das Letzte Mal" and it is no surprise that the fans ask for an encore, in which the band plays the atypical "Der Räuber und der Prinz", a childish song with glockenspiel sounds and a naive chorus. Finally, they re-play "Der Mussolini" a second time. A perfect ending of a musically very intense night!

Video of "Der Mussolini"

Conclusion

At the time of drawing conclusions, we must congratulate the organisators for this fantastic festival. Such an event held at the Vooruit in Ghent brought sweet memories of the BLACK EASTER festivals at the end of the nineties. Everything here was perfect: lineup, logistics, venue, audience, sound and lights: what more can you ask? A big Thank You to Filip Delens for letting Peek-a-boo have backstage access in order to make interviews.

Filip told us that there will certainly be a second edition of the REWIND EASTER festival in 2013 but it is too early to talk about the format and the lineup. In the meantime, there will be a 4th MINI-REWIND fest in October 2012: stay tuned!

Check the fantastic pictures of the festival by Xavier Marquis in the photo section.

Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
13/04/2012


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