Markthalle, Hamburg - 2011

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

”Introduction! We are Engel, you are Hamburg. Let’s make this a great night!”
- Magnus ’Mangan’ Klavborn (vocals)

That’s how easy it can be said, really. Let’s make this a great night. That was exactly what I was hoping for now that Engel was warming up for Pain at the wonderful concert hall known as Markthalle.
I had a hard time recognising the outfit though as they took the stage one by one; the drummer was easy enough to understand as he had been changed since the last time I saw the band, the new one is Jimmy Olausson (also in Marionette), but the vocalist was a trickier deal altogether. As it turned out, it was the same guy they have always had, Klavborn, but since I saw them last he has let his hair grow even longer and a big old Taliban beard is now covering most of the rest of the face... What also threw me off for a while was that he had a binder with the lyrics in it with him on stage, strongly suggesting that he did not know them.
Niclas Engelin was as usual missing so Marcus Sunesson was alone in handling live guitars, but as I understand it he is still very much a part of the band, even though he has been missing in the live-lineup for some time now.

The signature baseball bat mic-stand only made a short appearance as the band members walked on stage, after which Klavborn threw it aside to one of the stage-hands; other than this I noticed the band still held the style with having matching outfits, only they had now changed to simple patched denims and vests on t-shirts. Fair enough, some change is to be expected, and I for one was more interested in how the show would be carried out than what the guys were wearing at the time...
The way it was to be conducted we soon found out was with the pedal fully to the metal, an energy outburst which certainly lived up to what I had seen by the band at earlier times. Every band-member was working hard, and it was easy to see that they were having a lot of fun at the same time, especially so on Sunesson and bassist Steve Drennan, who were both smiling a lot when not throwing metal poses at us or headbanging furiously in time with the music.

The show didn’t lack interaction with the crowd either, or should I say strong attempts at it from the bands side?
Already in the fourth song, For Those Who Will Resist, Klavborn called out for a moshpit in the not so packed crowd, but all he got was, well, nothing really... He didn’t let his heart sink because of this though, and a little later he tried his request out again, much to the same result I am sad to say...
Klavborn did manage to get some nice clapping going for Sense The Fire however, so all was not lost, and people did shout some between songs as well, so it was only the action during the songs which was really missing. Sadly, as it certainly deserved a better welcome than the one it got.
There was one guy though which I must remember to include; what his reason may have been I can only guess, but he kept shouting for a bass solo for a very long time; actually, he didn’t stop until Klavborn pulled Drennan’s attention to the man, and Drennan pulled off some quick notes on the bass.

One thing Engel certainly had going against them was the sound, which was very poor indeed, at least at the place where I was standing (front and a little out to the right); here drums reigned supreme, and you could just narrowly catch some vocals and bass underneath them. Not the best way to present ones music...
This was one of the main factors that this show didn’t come completely together for me, well this and the Finns of Turmion Kätilöt who had played before Engel. Honestly, it doesn’t matter how good you are, the shock of seeing them perform takes away all the power you might have going in for you in your gig. It was still good, but it doesn’t get a top score from this reporter.


Until Eternity Ends
Casket Closing
Trial And Error
For Those Who Will Resist
Six Feet Deep
Sense The Fire

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