Saturday, May 19, 2012

Rammstein

So for the last 15 years I have been wanting to see a Rammstein concert, really bad. It was actually an item on my bucket list. Rammstein is known as the best performing band, period. They're shows are way over the top with pyrotechnics, fireworks, and theatrics.  Fans say, "other bands play, Rammstein burns!" People who aren't even fans go to these shows, and bring their kids to see the fireworks. A lot of the fans don't understand German which is why they do the theatrics. Till says he's actually not obsessed with fire but he does all the fire and pyrotechnics because he wants to take the attention off him during the guitar solos. He says he feels stupid standing there holding his mmicrophone with everyone looking at him.

A little over a month ago I was going through my junk mail and I saw an e-mail from live nation advertising concerts in the area. I first deleted it but then decided I was bored so I would see who is playing, not expecting anything spectacular. Well right there front and center was Rammstein, playing in Sunrise on April 20th. I e-mailed Natalie and she said she wanted to go so I got the tickets. I got the cheapest ones I could get too. $38 to sit way up top. It was a hundred to sit lower and I think $250 for ground level.

I have a DVD called Vollerball which has concerts they did in France, Tokyo, London, and Russia. This is actually how I introduced Natalie to Rammstein. From the DVD you can see that they are great performers but the DVD still doesn't catch all the insanity of these concerts. So I thought I knew what to expect but there was just so much more due to the cropping and zooming on the video. I'll get into that later.

So anyways 4-20 came and it was my last day working at FPL. Natalie dropped off Adri at her aunt's for the night and we headed out for the concert. We parked at the Sawgrass Mills and decided to walk over so we wouldn't get raped on parking. So we grabbed a quick bite to eat and then headed for the exit. While we were walking through the mall I thought it was weird that it sounded like a bowling alley. When we got outside I could see why. A severe t-storm was moving it. We had half a mile to go to get to the Bank Atlantic Center so we made a mad dash for it. Meanwhile we had lightning striking within 1/8 of a mile, so close it didn't make a boom sound it made a cracking sound. It was so close I nearly had a heart attack during a couple of the strikes. Small exaggeration but it really did scare me. It started getting really heavy when we got to the stairs. By the time we got in to the concert we were both soaked, but we just barely missed the worst of it. A couple minutes later we looked outside and it looked like a hurricane. It looked like September, not April!

Doesn't this look like a great way to start a concert?



 Two of the straightest Rammstein fans ever

So we sat there cold for an hour waiting for the band to come on stage. The concert was suppose to start at 8. We were there 15 minutes early. I don't know if it was the storm or what was going on but it didn't get started until 9. The good news is that we got free upgrades! Yes, those $38 seats I paid for were closed. So we got moved down into $100 seats for free! Haha. Sucks to be the suckers who actually paid for those seats.

By 9 I was absolutely freezing. I was soaked and they were keeping the building really cold. I suspected it was due to the use of fire. I asked one of the ladies if they were going to have fire since it was indoors and she said that she heard there would be. Like I really had to ask?  The band made their entrance close to where we were sitting. They had a giant bridge that came down from the ceiling and it went from the main stage to a smaller stage in the middle of the ice rink. The band came out medieval style. Guys leading with torches while they walked out in robes. They walked out to the smaller stage then across the bridge to the main stage. They set a couple fires and jumped right into some heavy guitar riffage.



The first song was Sonne. One of Natalie's favorites, one of mine as well. It's much harder when performed live. I was so cold at the beginning of the song that my back was going into crazy spasms and I thought I was going to fall over. I wasn't expecting fire in the first song of the night but there was lots of it. Needless to say I started feeling a little bit better really fast. We were about 150-200 feet from the stage but we could feel every flash of fire.

I think the lineup went something like this. Not exactly in this order but as good as I can remember. I can't remember all the details but I'll point out the highlights of the night. (Updated, see flyer at bottom for exact lineup).

Sonne
Keine Lust
Feuer Frei
Asche Zu Asche
Senhsucht
Links234
Mein Teil
Wollt Ihr Das Bett In Flammen Sehen
Mutter
Du Hast
Du Riechst So Gut
Haifisch

Second Stage
Buck Dich
Ohne Dich
Mann Geghen Mann

Back to main stage
Mein Herz Brennt
Ich Will
Amerika
Engel
#8 off Liebe Ist Fur Alle Dich. I don't need to say the name. Fans know it.

So here's the highlights of the night. First song they busted out as said earlier was Sonne. At the end of the song they had fire coming out of the floor going in circles around Til. Keine Lust, not one of my favorites but it was a good hard song. Asche Zu Asche was good as always. Towards the end of the song Till and Richard were singing into burning microphones. I was expecting that. They always do it. Sehnsucht was amazing. One of my favorites. They sync the fireworks with the drums at the beginning of the song. These first songs all had the same background on stage. For Feuer Frei they changed to look like red honeycomb. I call it the hell background. They did their classic move during Feuer Frei. Towards the end Till, Richard, and I think Oliver went under the stage and got their firemask. Oliver took one side of the stage, Richard took the other, and Till front and center. Then when the beat picked up they started blowing out streams of fire.

The fire mask during Feuer Frei

 
Short clip of Sehnsucht. The sound sucks because it was on my iPhone but just look at the fireworks and lights.

They surprised me when they busted out Mutter. Another one of Natalie's favorites. Great song, much harder live. At the end of Mutter they had a shower of sparks falling down on Till. I have heard that Till is a masaquist and frequently gets burned on stage. During this song he had his arms out and I could see the sparks landing on him. I could see his body outlined with sparks. Links234 was another one of my favorites. Good synced light show.

Short clip of Wollt Ihr Das Bett In Flammen Sehen



Mein Teil was probably my favorite. Natalie doesn't like this one much because she was grossed out by the video. It's a song about a case in Germany I guess similar to Jeffrey Domer. I think it's funny and was their best performance of the night. Till went under the stage and at the beginning of the song pulled out a big cauldron. Till was dressed like a butcher with a big white hat, bloody apron, and a big knife with a microphone on one end of it. Inside the cauldron was Christian with his keyboard. Towards the end of the song Till busted out a flame thrower that looked like an AK47 and took shots at the cauldron. Before each shot Christian "Flake" would duck down and hide and then poke his head back up. After 3 or 4 shots Till got handed a bigger flame thrower. He got the crowed all riled up and then engulfed the entire cauldron in flames which caused fireworks too go off under it. Christian jumped out with a small glowing firework pack on his back that kept going off. The performance was amazing.

Du Hast was another great one. I get kind of sick of hearing the songs that make a band famous. But this is one that when they bust it out live it's one of their best. After the chorus "Willst du bis der Tod euch scheidet, treu ihr sein für alle Tage"(Do you want, until death, which would separate, to love her, even in bad days) a couple streams of flames came out of the ground at Till. Till answered back "Nein" and then six streams of flamage came down from above. It was hot, we could feel it, even more so than the other displays of flamage. Then some fireworks shot out right towards us. I had seen this on the video but it's different in person. Natalie got a little scared thinking they were out of control. Little did she know they were on a zipline. So they came at us, did a u-turn, and went right back at the stage. Once they got to the stage the whole stage exploded in white fireworks.


The second to last song on this stage was Du Riechst So Gut. After this they did Haifisch. They busted out a rubber raft and Flake crowd surfed on it pointing where to go and pretending to paddle. I think it's a lot smarter than those fools who get felt up crowd surfing.

After this the band left the stage and the bridge lowered again, with fog. Christoph came out with a blonde curly wig and a long dress shirt unbuttoned. The rest of the band were in leather, mostly shirtless, and crawling across the bridge on their hands and knees. Christop had Till on a leash. When I saw them dressed like I freaks I knew what was next. Buck Dich! When they got to the smaller stage, much closer to us, Christop was walking around angry acting like he was looking for something. Kicking stuff, throwing his hands around, and then he shoved the mic into Till's mouth and the music started. Mid song a local model that goes by the name RubberDoll, (I saw her before the show and told Natalie her name is stripper chick because she was dressed in a low cut vinyl suit with a wig) jumped on stage, sat on Till's back, and started hitting him with a whip. Till kept getting random pulls to the ground by the leash. I think it was Richard pulling him around.
 


After this they did Mann Geghen Mann and another one of Natalie's favorites, Ohne Dich. They took Mann Geghen Mann up a couple levels. It was pretty intense. After these three songs they went back across the bridge to the main stage.

Ich Will was good as always. During this song a big fan came out on the set. They put lights on it and it just stayed put for a while. Ich Will is always 100 times as good live. During Mein Herz Brent Till had a red beating heart. Half way through the song he ripped it off his chest and sang while holding it in the air. At the end of the song it turned green. Epic song. I like the way it starts out so slow but then it has Till's aggressive singing. One of my favorites of the night.

Clip from Mein Herz Brent. Natalie stopped the video right before Till's heart lit up.

So back to the fan. During Amerika the fan moved closer to the stage and then rotated so instead of blowing down it was blowing out towards the crowd. They had red, white, and blue, strategically placed on the fan and it looked really cool. One of my favorite songs and one of the best as far as lighting. At the end of the song they blasted so much confetti in the air that it was floating around for a couple more songs.

Engel was one that I had been waiting for all night. Till walked on stage with folded angel wings. They unfolded and each one had to go out at least ten feet. They look really heavy. Towards the end of the song fire and sparks come out of the wings. Everyone was singing along during this song, of course, it's one of their best songs ever, a classic from the 90's. Then they fold up and Till goes back under the stage.

Short clip of Till's burning wings.


 

The last song they did was one I had never heard before. It was #8 from Liebe Ist Fur Alle Dich. I had never heard this song but it had a pretty catchy tune. Half way through the song Till took the microphone stand and just started slamming it on the stage as hard as he could. After the 4th or 5th hit the microphone blew up with fireworks. Then Till went to the end of the stage and hopped on top of a cannon and shot white foam all over the crowd. All you could see where people with white heads. It reminded me of the Jonas Brothers episode on Southpark. From what I heard the people who got foamed were completely soaked afterwords.


And that was our night. The concert ended just before 11 and we got to walk back to our car through flooded streets. It was so epic, the reason it was on my bucket list in the first place. No other bands can even come close to performing like Rammstein. I've seen some good concerts in the past. Static-X was so good that I saw them four or five times. But not even they are worthy of me writing a blog about their show.Natalie already wants to see them again. Not likely since Till plans on retiring when he turns 50 so he can spend time with his daughter, but I'm glad I got the chance to see them before it's too late.

Update. Since I may have been a little off on the lineup. I just found this.