Photo by Jim Louvau
Rammstein stages post-apocalyptic spectacle in Glendale
3 comments by Jim Louvau – May. 19, 2012 12:18 PM
Special for the Republic | azcentral.com
German industrial-metal icons Rammstein made a very rare stop in the Valley on Friday, May 18, at Glendale’s Jobing.com Arena and treated fans to what can best be described as a post-apocalyptic spectacle.
The show marked the first time they’ve returned to the desert since 1998’s Family Values tour featuring Korn, Limp Bizkit –remember those guys? — and Orgy.
And they did not disappoint.
As the lights went down on the packed arena, a long bridge that looked like it was straight out of an “Aliens” movie expanded down the center of the floor section while white lights and smoke screens shot out the sides of the portal.
After the lengthy intro, Rammstein appeared holding flags and even a fire torch and stood on a platform that lifted them to the bridge.
They made their way to the stage and ripped into “Sonne” from 2001’s “Mutter” and the stage and the crowd lit up. There was blasts of pyrotechnics throughout the opening track and by the end, the stage was covered in fire.
The groove-heavy “Wollt Ihr Das Bett In Flammen Sehen” followed and keyboardist Flake Lorenz was very animated as he danced frantically on a treadmill in between his keyboard rig.
The heavy fire and smoke screens continued during the sensory overload of “Keine Lust” as singer Till Lindemann stomped around the stage. By this time, there had been enough fire onstage that the local fire department should have been on standby.
“Sehnsucht,” “Asche Zu Asche” and “Feuer Frei!” sounded tight and the guitar tones of guitarists Richard Z. Kruspe and Paul Landers were monstrous.
Just when you thought it couldn’t get more ridiculously amazing, Lindemann came out onstage dressed in a chef’s outfit covered in blood with a butchers knife attached to his microphone and pushed out a huge cooking pot to the middle of the stage with Lorenz inside of it. Towards the end of the song, Lindemann began torching the pot with a flame thrower as if he were cooking Lorenz like a stew. He then traded in the small flame thrower for a much larger one and lit the entire pot up in flames as he continued to sing the song. Eventually Lorenz jumped out of the pot and ran around on fire.
For “Du Riechst So Gut,” the singer brought a flaming crossbow and spun around the stage. Then, as the song wrapped, both guitarists had smoke coming out of their shirts as they stood at the center of the stage.
Drummer Christoph Schneider got the crowd pumped up before “Links 2 3 4″ and the track featured a nice solo by Kruspe. “Du Hast” got a great crowd reaction with lots of fist pumping and moshing on the floor.
During “Haifisch,” Lorenz tried to do a little crowd surfing of his own in a raft but didn’t make it very far.
Rammstein left the stage, and when the lights went back up, Kruspe was playing keyboards in the middle of the floor on a platform that looked like a spaceship. The bridge lowered from the rafters and Christoph Schneider, sporting a yellow woman’s wig, walked the other band members on their hands and knees like dogs.
The platform was a mini stage where the band performed “Buck Dich”, “Mann Gegen Mann” and “Ohne Dich” in stripped-down fashion.
As the encore began, a large industrial fan covered the back of the stage, shooting out fog before “Mein Herz Brennt,” which featured beautiful strings and Lindemann singing with a pulsing light-up heart on his chest. “Amerika” was a chant-rock anthem with Lorenz shooting confetti out from under of his keyboard all over the crowd.
The second encore started with the show stopper “Engel,” which was outstanding. Lindemann appeared on stage with a pair of giant silver angel wings that would, of course, eventually be set on fire. It was beautiful chaos at its finest. During the final track, the singer rode an oversized penis across the front of the stage and sprayed the crowd with foam to their excitement.
Beyond the amazing production and all the bells and whistles that went on during the show, the thing that truly stood out was the fact that a band with little to no radio support that has very few lyrics in the English language is able to have such massive success in America let alone in a very tough Phoenix market. Experiencing an actual “show” was a fresh breath of air and imagine if you could understand what they were saying.