Ebstorf (GER), 31.08.2019
Where the hell is Ebstorf? In case someone wonders when reading this, I can tell you: it´s a little town between Lüneburg and Uelzen – and it´s adorable. Old half-timbered houses, an old cloister, if you look for idyllic scenery, you have just found it. And once in a year this town also has the Heidebeben festival to offer – this year with the bands Kraftakt, SirBon and as a headliner the Rammstein tribute band Feuerengel. And with this lineup they managed to not only attract the local folks, but judging from all the cars with foreign plates, also from quite a distance.
The audience was a nice mix of young and old, dressed in black, dressed in a lot of colors – it´s been a cross-section of society, and everyone was there just for the sake of spending a nice summer evening with great music (and one or more cold drinks). Despite the good weather, the area took a while to get crowded, maybe the quite high temperatures in the afternoon made people rather jump into the cold waters of the outdoor swimming area close-by than come to watch the first bands.
This is the situation during the opener of the festival, Kraftakt. There was hardly any crowd and most people were to be found in front of the beverage and food stalls rather than in front of the stage. Nevertheless, the first two rows were filled with folks that came to enjoy their music with enthusiasm – this has been the exception though, unfortunately. A bit of headbanging and a smile was all the reaction they got, which probably was not only caused by the fact that the music somehow didn´t really fit into the whole package of this evening’s music.
The German vocals sounded inconsistently, the parts with several voices sounded off quite often – you could´ve happily ignored all of that if the band had shown some more passion and power on stage, but they just couldn´t manage to do that. Where was this fire, this passion showing that you really wanted to rock the stage and crowd? It clearly wasn´t visible on stage, and so it´s not been much of a surprise that the show felt longer than it actually was and no, that’s not really a promising start.
Luckily it continued much more convincingly with SirBon, an AC/DC tribute band that shows fun on stage a lot and during every second. I don´t know if it was easier for them because the area got more crowded in the meantime, or if it actually got more crowded because they were attracting people more effectively than Kraftakt had managed to do. I´ll just leave it like that – it´s a hen and the egg issue. But one thing´s for sure: it´s been a fun time watching and listening, and not only the mass of headbanging people in the audience has shown that but also the happy and smiley faces.
People sang along, and you had to face the fact that the band had one advantage: people knew the lyrics, because simply everyone knows at least a couple of the AC/DC lyrics, no matter which age. And since people had finished their dinner with a fish breadroll in one hand and a beer in the other, you also had the power to rock out. A show that seemed to pass by in the glimpse of an eye, and people wanted more – so did I, because the sound was good, the mood on stage and in front of the stage was good, you cannot ask for more!
The change-over time was well spent with regaining some energy – or with waiting in front of one of the too-few toilets, meeting new people, because why queue in silence if you can pass time with a lot of humor.
Whenever I tell someone that I like Feuerengel, this person is a bit puzzled – because: the band managed to turn me, the not-so-big fan of Rammstein, into someone who really enjoys the music and loves the show of Feuerengel. And that has many very good reasons – every damn time it´s a show where you can hear and see all the passion and lifeblood that is being invested. You can see the fun on stage, the energy that is being put into every move, the perfection to be a great tribute, but also the gentle incorporation of their very own handwriting. That´s what makes people attend their gigs.
And not only Rammstein hardcore fans are being attracted, in the desperate need to have some fix in between Rammstein shows – no, far off. You find a lot of people in the audience who like Rammstein, but rather attend a Feuerengel show instead. And that´s simply something you can see, the mix of people who immediately just go ahead with enthusiasm. The show offered a great mix of songs from the latest Rammstein album but also classics, so everyone had their favorites covered and even the sceptics maybe have found their liking in the new songs, if I judge from the smiles on peoples’ faces.
It´s clearly been a hot show, in many aspects – if you weren´t feeling hot and sweaty thanks to singing along or headbanging, you did something wrong. But also for such cases there was a solution – pyrotechnics. Because those are something you simply need as a tribute band like Feuerengel to turn the concert into a special show. Their own pyrotechnical staff burned down what could have been burned down, and it was great to watch – and gave the show another touch to be just perfect.
I am curious whether there will be another edition of Heidebeben next year, and curious whether Feuerengel will be headlining again – if so, I can just say it´s worth the drive to go and attend this festival – it´s a nice and local, likeable and cozy festival!
These are the upcoming Feuerengel shows of 2019 – but be quick, a few shows have already old out, and the others are selling out faster than you´d think!
05.10.2019 BOCHUM (D) Matrix
26.10.2019 GÖRLITZ (D) Landskron Kulturbrauerei
01.11.2019 HELMOND (NL) De Cacaofabriek
02.11.2019 HENGELO (NL) Metropool – SOLD OUT
08.11.2019 LEEUWARDEN (NL) Neushoorn
09.11.2019 BERGEN OP ZOOM (NL) Gebouw-T
15.11.2019 AMSTERDAM (NL) Q Factory
16.11.2019 GRONAU (D) Bürgerhalle
23.11.2019 NEURUPPIN (D) Kulturhaus – SOLD OUT
29.11.2019 WITTLICH (D) Atrium des Cusanus Gymnasiums
30.11.2019 LÜDENSCHEID (D) Schützenhalle
13.12.2019 BREMEN (D) Aladin
14.12.2019 BREMEN (D) Aladin – SOLD OUT
19.12.2019 WILHELMSHAVEN (D) Pumpwerk
20.12.2019 WILHELMSHAVEN (D) Pumpwerk – SOLD OUT
21.12.2019 SCHWERIN (D) Sport- und Kongresshalle
27.12.2019 LÜBECK (D) Kulturwerft Gollan
28.12.2019 LÜBECK (D) Kulturwerft Gollan
29.12.2019 ROSTOCK (D) Moya