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Old 15 Feb 2008, 15:24   #1
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Join Date: 09 Nov 2000
Location: Emmaboda, Sweden.
Posts: 17,538
7 Party in Berlin (Germany), Aug 2004

How does someone that had never seen Alphaville play live before that very weekend attempt to put into words the feelings about seeing this band play for their 20th anniversary? Not only was this a huge event for me and my first time setting foot in Europe but it was a huge event for everyone involved – all of the fans filling the seats and those taking the stage. I am woefully inadequate but here is an attempt!

Tipi is a beautiful venue. It has a very intimate feel. Tipi das Zelt is located in Tiergarten in Berlin. Despite going the wrong direction on the U-bahn I did make my way to the venue fairly easily.

I’m not sure of the exact number of seats that night but the number I heard thrown around was 600 to 800. Nearly every seat was a good one. All the tables were lit with candles and some people were eating. The ceiling was sprinkled with lights so it almost felt like sitting under the stars. My table was on the right side of the stage on the second level. This sounds deceiving because really there was only about 10 feet between table and the side of the stage. And there were four or five stairs leading to the floor right in front of me. So there was a PERFECT view.

It didn’t take very long for the bells to go off to inform everyone that the show would be starting soon and to get to their seats. Honestly, I can’t say what the first song was. I was probably too excited to remember my own name at that moment and I’m surprised I remembered it at all that entire weekend! The first part of the show consisted of Marian and Martin Lister on piano rather than keyboards. Then they had part of an orchestra come out to join them. Just… completely beautiful. I’ve read the setlist and it seems “Still Falls the Rain” and “First Monday” were the opening songs. I don’t remember anything before “Elegy” – my favorite Alphaville song. At this point I had goosebumps and nearly cried. That’s never happened at a concert for me. From what I heard later from others I wasn’t alone.

And then some of my other favorites…Heartbreaker, Moonboy, Moongirl, etc. I’ve often said there are so many Alphaville songs that, for me, are so beautiful they cause this indescribable physical pain when I listen to them. As if I could die from my heart bursting, swelling and breaking at the same time. I think at this show it was all the more intense. Marian’s voice was simply perfect. Pristine. I can’t imagine anyone expecting better. How could I not be in heaven?! Gabi Becker joined the stage to sing Moonboy which was a great treat. I love her vocals on that song.

Then a gentleman by the name Kai Hawaii joined Marian on stage for a duet to a song called “Fur Dich”. AH HA! My German is not to pathetic that I can at least translate that as “For You”!! Humour me, hrmm? Kai Hawaii reminded me a little bit of Peter Murphy. That’s a compliment coming from me. And that was all in the first part of the show before the intermission. When the break came they began working on the stage and pulling up the drums, setting up the keyboards, removed the piano, etc.

Most people went to use the bathrooms or went to the other side of the venue to say hello to Bernhard Lloyd. I stayed where I was, very content and peaceful and more than excited to be there.

Then I spot Marian’s head. Most people didn’t notice him, I think, because they were preoccupied and it was somewhat empty where I was. He was on the floor chatting with a couple people and then headed over by my table where there was an entrance into the backstage area, I suppose. He passed within just a few feet of me but I wasn’t about to bother him. Well, I might have if he’d stopped and wasn’t talking to anyone. Then Gabby came out with Lily – their daughter. It was very strange for me.. to view this private moment. Marian picked Lily up to hug her and kiss her and OHHHH my heart was just melting and I tried not to be too obvious about looking but I know I had a smile on my face. Marian disappeared after that.

The second part of the show was filled with a lot of energy. Marian just glows on stage. Music is his fountain of youth. Onstage he really has no age. He was just smiling and energetic and wonderful. Unfortunately for me… everything he said between songs he said in German. Of course, that makes sense considering we were in Berlin and I don’t know that I would have remembered much anyway if he had been speaking in English but I do wish I spoke German better. I didn’t understand a word! But everyone up there seemed to be having a wonderful time. It was funny to be 4 feet from Martin after watching him so often on the Little America dvd.

A couple of my personal favorites from the second half were Shadows She Said (I have dreams about that whole song when I sleep), Ways, Summer in Berlin, Monkey In the Moon and Apollo.

They did a few new songs but the one that sticks out for me is Sweet Dreams. I can not WAIT to hear that on a cd. I still get the melody stuck in my head a week later which is amazing because Germany is the only place I have heard it! I can’t think of another band that would play a song once and have it stick with me like that.

Half way through the second set people forgot about their seats. Some people made their way to the floor and were dancing. I made my way down there eventually just to be closer and attempt some better photos. I couldn’t seem to dance, though. I felt like if I danced I would miss something… I would get so into dancing I wouldn’t be able to absorb every single minute of the show. Oh the Tipi staff did inform us before the show that flash photography and video recording was not allowed. I think they were nearly completely ignored.

If the venue allowed it and if the band were super-human then there would have been 10 encores.


Written by Amber (US) – pictures by Amber & Wii.

"Alphaville ohne Bernhard ist wie eine Apfelstrudel ohne apfel"
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