This year was the 16th edition of the (in)famous Wave Gotik Treffen in Leipzig. I was there too at the disastrous 9th edition and wanted to go again at least one more time, so that became 2007. It was a terrible drive to our hotel with traffic jams and heavy rains, but fortunately we managed to get our ribbon, have a look in the “Werk II” (where already on Friday night a big crowd had gathered) and go to the VÃ¶lkerschlachdenkmal for the opening light-show. The VÃ¶lkerschlachdenkmal remembers some 1813 battle and is the largest (and very impressive) European monument. The organisation of the WGT managed to use the entire monument and area for an impressive light shows with music of In The Nursery. A grand opening for sure (see here for some photos of things I write about).
On Saturday we checked out a few of the many locations of the festival, took a stroll throughout the city and ran into groups of “grufties” everywhere. This is what I mostly came for, the entire city is taken over by “die schwarze Leute”. You have to walk or drive from location to location to see a few things of the massive program or just hang around downtown. One band that I wanted to see was Rosa Crux who would play in the Schauspielhaus. I am no fond of their music, but the shows are supposed to be magnificent. Well, this is true! A top class theatre full of Grufties, a carrilon, self-drumming drums, a choir… a very impressive show for sure. From the courteous Schauspielhaus to the dampy UT Connewitz then, because there would be the one and only live performance of the Germany industrial cult-act FirÂ§t Law. Before that we saw Bad Sector, Antlers Mulm and Fjernlys. All alright, but the place was too hot and too crowded. FirÂ§t Law was just alright too. A man behind a laptop with a guitar.
On Sunday the want-list was a bit larger. In the afternoon a few CMI-bands would play in the Connewitz and I wanted to see Coph Nia again. Walking to the place there was a big crowd outside and obviously some people had an argument. Two people started to talk to us about people not being allowed to get in. Since my German is not that good, it took a while before I realised that this was another ‘leftish protest group’, but they didn’t just protest, they actually attacked people. Right in front of me a guy was hit in the face, then I was pushed away and yelled at. In a kind of reflex I just turned around and walked away, having no need whatsoever to wait until this little event would evolve towards a battle (it was only a matter of time before the group of ‘refused’ would outnumber the ‘protesters’). Later I heard that the police had been involved, that people had needed medical attention at that on other days and times, similar (and worse) things had happened. I wonder why people who have nothing to do with the organisation think that they can accuse and attack people solely on appearance. The events also made it to the newspaper btw.
Off to another location and (after being again rejected, but this time for the amount of people that wanted to see Qntal and Estampie in the Schauspielhaus) at night there fortunately were no protests and I did get the chance to see All My Faith Lost, Lux Interna, Rome and Ataraxia in the beautiful “Anker”.
On Monday we and a few hundred others went to the cinema to see Das ParfÃ¼m and at night went to the “Volkspalast” for Kammer Sieben, :Golgotha:, Apoptose (with local fanfare drumming group!), Jesus & The Gurus and DerniÃ¨re. Previous time this place was a completely outlived dump, how it is a magnifent neo-Renaissance building with bars around the central vault room and the sides have been turned into smaller rooms for (after) parties. A job well done!
WGT 2007 was a nice experience, save for the meaningless violence of overheated people. There were more locations that we have visited, but the Heidnisches Dorf, the Sixtina, the Kohlrabizirkus, the Agra park and the ParkbÃ¼hne (this year not with neofolk but with hard electro) were just as every other place crowded with people. According to the Tuesday newspaper, there have been no less than 20.000 visitors!