2013 is almost over – time for the annual look back at the concerts of the year!
Let’s start with the numbers: 55 concerts in total, seven of these were summer festivals. There weren’t really a lot of bands I saw more than once or twice … only Itchy Poopzkid with two concerts and two festivals, I think, and die Ärzte with one concert and two festivals. Oh, and of course this weird Norwegian band that I saw a couple of times this year. =;-)
29 of these concerts were in Germany, the other 26 abroad. Which is a rather strange ratio, I know, but well, I’m a concert junkie. =;-) In addition to the concerts, I attended three WWE events, one musical, one ballet, and one TV award show.
The smallest concert of all was the Honningbarna concert in Stuttgart: There were ten, maybe fifteen people in the audience. It was great fun, even though I was a bit jetlagged and couldn’t enjoy it as much as I would have a week later. The biggest concert … hmm, not quite sure. Probably Rock’n’Heim festival or the Ärzte concert in Bietigheim-Bissingen. I guess both had an audience of about 20.000.
Die Ärzte … well, no, I guess it’s over. I tried to give them another chance in Bietigheim-Bissingen, but it just was no fun. If you’re at a concert and think that you could just as well be back home on your couch with a good book – there’s no need to be there. And I had a very similar feeling when they played at Taubertal festival and Rock’n’Heim a month later.
The festivals: Interestingly, the festivals that I enjoyed most were Trollrock in Norway and Rock’n’Heim. The first one was tiny but awesome – only a few bands every day, so no “overkill”, and great music, nice people, and good weather. The latter … well, I had expected to HATE it there. Big, new (and therefore unorganized), expensive, my last festival of the year. But I wasn’t “working” at the festival, thus not writing any report or taking photos, so I could just do whatever I wanted, and I really enjoyed it. Plus, it was far from sold out, which means the area wasn’t too crowded. So thumbs up!
Biggest band surprise? Hmm, hard to decide. I LOVED the concerts/festivals with Itchy Poopzkid and Madsen. A perfect mixture and two great bands on stage! Also, I greatly enjoyed the Fozzy concerts I got to see, and I’m looking forward to their next European tour. Beware, I’m coming after you! =;-) And my new discovery of the year is clearly Hoffmaestro – I saw them at some festivals and turned into a fan right away. Their album is just as awesome. The sad part is that they canceled their tour in fall, so I hope I can catch them next year!
And finally, there was … Kaizers Orchestra. 28 concerts this year – three at the opera in Oslo, one in London, one in New York, and finally seven in a row in Stavanger. If I want to list the “traditional” geographical statistics, it’s Kaizers only. Northern-most concert: Kaizers in Trondheim. Eastern-most concert: Kaizers in Vienna. Southern-most concert: Kaizers in Zurich. Western-most concert: Kaizers in New York City.
Yes – New York City. And London. Both in one year – within one month, actually. It’s crazy, but it was soooo worth it. The London trip: an awesome week together with great friends, and not only Kaizers, but also WWE and Fozzy. I can’t even pick the highlight of the week – Kaizers were just one of many highlights. New York City had been on my list of cities to visit for a long time. Still, when the concert was announced, I knew I wouldn’t go there. And at the same time I knew I would … and I did. And just like London, it was a great vacation, and the Kaizers concert (and afterparty) were just … surreal. But an experience that I will never forget. And NYC itself would have been worth the trip even without the concert, so it wasn’t fully crazy. =;-)
Not all Kaizers concerts were amazing this year – I’ve seen them soooo often by now that I know them way too well. What might seem like a great concert to most can be a bit disappointing for me, as I notice if they could do more but just don’t care, like for example at my ten-year anniversary at Ravnefesten in Kristiansand. It was still a great concert, just not as good as it could have been. Still, there’s no concert that I would have wanted to miss. So many memories, so much joy, so much fun. Thank you, Kaizers!
The last week of concerts in Stavanger was a rollercoaster ride – both emotionally and concerning the “work load” (not only caused by Kaizers of course, as I was also doing “real” work remotely, but there was quite some work related to Kaizers). It was a terrific finale though – of course! Followed and finalized by meeting Janove at the airport in Amsterdam the day after the final show … time to really say goodbye.
Or so I thought … Just last month, I went to Norway again to hand out the award for the best live band of the year to the best live band of the year! Another surreal experience, and a great honor.
So this concludes the Kaizers era now. There will surely be less concerts for me next year, and fewer trips to Norway. Skambankt will take over a bit – my first trip to Norway is booked and scheduled already – but I doubt I’ll go there as often as for Kaizers. But we’ll see …
Apart from Skambankt, I’m looking forward to a Fozzy tour, some great concerts with Thees Uhlmann, Wirtz, Hoffmaestro, and of course some nice summer festivals. Taubertal, Mini Rock, maybe Trollrock again – it’s gonna be a fun year, but it will not be as much and as rushed as this year. Which is good, even for a concert junkie like me. =;-)