Schandmaul Bochum (2012)
Ruhrcongresshalle, Bochum, Germany
29 January 2012
One of the bands on my ‘must have seen once’ list was Schandmaul. This German band is one of ‘less harder’ bands in medieval rock, but they’re very good at this. In Germany this is one of the most popular bands in this genre. And this shows considering the fact the venue for this gig is the Ruhrcongress in Bochum. A venue which recently hosted the Subway to Sally ‘Eisheilige Nacht tour’, a venue though which was a little to big for the Paganfest tour a few years ago.
Schandmaul brought a support act along, the German ‘modern wave’ band Burn. This wasn’t really a ‘warming up’. The music played by Burn, was that much different from Schandmaul, it couldn’t please the audience really. Almost nobody was interested in Burn, although the audience clapped polite and they even cheered when the band asked it. But the question put the question if the audience likes more, was answered loud and clearly.
It has to be said, although the guys didn’t play bad at all, the music didn’t touch me for a moment. And considering my age and background, this is quite amazing. My roots ar for a great deal in the new wave. The music of Burn is too smooth in my opinion.
Then it was time for the big thing, Schandmaul. The band had to replace their violin-player for this evening, while she was pregnant and not capable of being on stage a whole evening any more. But this was never a bad thing. The new long haired lady fits perfect in the band, and can play the violin…..
Don’t expect a gigantic show with fireworks and stuff, but basicly a plain show. But a show in which very good lighteffects were added to nice down to earth movements on the podium result in a perfect show. Drummer, guitar-player and bass-player stick to their raised platforms, they only come forward when their role in the music becomes more prominent. Thomas and both women entertain the public from the front of the stage and this is a real nice setting for this kind of music.
They playing for 75 minutes all kinds of nice songs, then they leave the stage, which is not accepted by the very enthusiastic audience of course. After 3 long minutes the band re-enters the stage and finishes the show, that almost lasts for 2 hours. Of course they don’t miss out on songs like ‘Herren der Winde’, ‘Die Walpurgisnacht’, ‘Das Teufelweib’ and ‘Vogelfrey’. It aren’t songs for a mosh of circlepit, but the audience loves it, singing along, clapping, waving or hugging with a loved one, on touching songs like ‘Dein Anblick’ and ‘Wilst du’. In this venue this means there are over 3000 people going really crazy. The only time in the show where things go wrong is the really nice change to ‘Die goldene kette’, when Thomas starting from the applause after the a song wants to make a really nice change with an intro on acoustic guitar. Unfortunately we can’t hear the guitar, but there’s always a roadie, who can fix this problem, near by. With his nice kind of humour Thomas asks the audience imagine the last song has just ended. And it works, everyone is clapping and cheering and Thomas can go on as he intended.
In short, Schandmaul show great skills and I can recommend this band to everyone, who’s not totally addicted to metal. I’s a shame they don’t perform a lot outside of Germany.