In Extremo

Rockharz - 2011

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

No doubt German medieval metal bands were in high course here at Rockharz, so having In Extremo headline the final day on the Rock Stage felt quite natural. Without ever getting too much into the band, I’ve always had a feeling that I might very well like them, and the few times I’ve seen them live have only worked to strengthen this feeling.

Once more, the field was completely jam-packed with people, so much in fact that I have a strong feeling everyone, or damn near it, was here to listen. On the other hand, the festival was drawing nearer its end, so if you wanted to suck up the last ounces of atmosphere this was the place to be. In Extremo was planning something special, that much was for sure...
In the first song the band took us travelling among the stars with Sternenreisen which was well received by the masses, but it wasn’t until the second song that the band brought out the full power of their show; you see, In Extremo was (as far as I had seen) the first and only band at the festival to use pyrotechnics, and they weren’t saving the gunpowder either! There were sparklers, rockets and multi-coloured flames shooting out all over! No wonder the security were keeping a tight eye on the front-line, and were handing out a lot of water all the time...
The band-members were obviously enjoying the fiery show as well, and at one point I saw vocalist Michael Robert Rhein (a.k.a. Das Letzte Einhorn) walk over and pat the technician on the head.

But In Extremo weren’t all warm air though, they also had an arsenal of songs with them to entertain us, although I must admit that most them I didn’t know; you see, given my limited time with the band I haven’t really learned their back catalogue by heart, and when Rhein spoke he both understandably and regrettably did so in German...
The mainly German audience was with him on every note though, and there were several loud sing-along moments during the course of the concert; from the simple ”how how” of the fittingly named Sængerkrieg (transl. Singerwar) to the complete lyrics of Herr Mannelig. This was the only one I could truly follow, as it is both a song I know extremely well (from another band however), and since the lyrics are in Swedish which is my mother tongue! It was however, quite clear to hear that it was not the mother tongue of Rhein, so I did have some fun listening to his pronunciation at times, and at other times I had a hard time deciphering where he was in the lyrics because he was so hard to understand. Much like I would be no doubt if I took up singing in German...

But for all of the advanced fireshow and choreographed dancing of the bagpipe players, and all of the singing and not so advanced choreography of the dancers in the crowd, I still must confess that I wasn’t very moved by the show and I ended up being a little bit disappointed and bored.
Whether my memory does me injustice, or it is the band which has slowed down over the years I cannot say; this however, was not what I had expected, and not what I needed from the band...

Setlist (incomplete):

Herr Mannelig
Küss Mich
Mein Rasend Herz

Latest uploads: