(by Fondas SumerSon)
I always knew that “Semana Gotica de Madrid” was a great goth gathering, but I never had the chance to attend up to now. It is true that I always had in mind to visit Madrid once again (last time I was there, it was 4 years ago for the Nephilim gig) and be a part of it. This year Mr. BillyPhobia with his SGM’s line-up, made me book my tickets and join them!
So 2 more Greek die-hard goth rockers joined me in this journey to the Iberia goth land and we had a special “goth” weekend, catching up with good old friends and having a lot of fun.
Friday 24.10.2014 – day I
After an exhausting sightseeing day, our very first Spanish mate Harmonika Man came over at our hotel for a few drinks and then led us to the venue. The attendance was quite successful. There were around 100 people each day, which is not bad at all for gigs of this kind of music.
Red Sun Revival, Spiritual Front and the mighty Still Patient? completed the first day’s line up.
Since it was a festival, every band had a limited time to be on stage and all bands played for about an hour or something.
Red Sun Revival were on stage around 21:30 and instantly captured the audience with their very first tune. As I’ve mentioned before, I have strong feelings for this band, having seeing them live 3 times so far. They are giving a new meaning to traditional goth rock, through their unique sound. They played all the hits from their debut album as well as 2 songs from their latest ep. The Spanish fans seemed to enjoy their show and the guys received quite positive feedback and gained many new fans.
Running From the Dawn
Lost for Words
Forgive us Now
Nothing to Hide
The Italians Spiritual Front were the next act. I admit that I wasn’t into their music so much. I liked some of their songs nevertheless. I don’t know how many members they have on stage normally, but now they played as a trio. Even if I didn’t know all the songs they performed, I have to admit that they gained my attention. Their singer with his guitar was very active on stage and was constantly moving and dancing. Their sound borrows elements from neo-folk, cabaret, Americana and many more styles. The audience participated at their show by clapping and singing along and the guys seemed to enjoy it very much!
Walk the Dead Line
Song for the Old Man
Jesus Died in Las Vegas
After another small break, the time for the legendary Still Patient? had come. These guys were the main reason that I traveled to Madrid. I’m listening to their music for about 20 years, being so addicted to their style. I never had the chance to see them on stage however. So I was more than excited that one of my everlasting dreams would become true. I knew that they would perform as trio since their second guitar player was ill. I have seen many goth bands perform live all these years, but it was the first time that I saw such a passionate performance. They were giving 100% of themselves in every song. Andy’s vocals were amazing, not losing even a bit from the studio versions. Bec’s guitar riffs were absolutely catchy and Guido’s bass lines strong as they should be. I got very emotional during the performance of classics like “Agoraphobia”, “Mascara Osiris”, “God & Satan” or “Anavryn”, during which the Greek Goth team raised a tower in order to honor the band. Still Patient? played a best of show, including hits from their past, current material and 2 brand new songs from their forthcoming release, which both left me speechless.
All is Well
God and Satan
Seconds of Fame (new song)
We Come in Peace (new song)
After some pics with new and old friends and some pleasant chatting with band members, we headed to “La Leyenda” bar-club, where the after show would take place.
Billy & Nico were spinning great goth rock anthems all night long and they kept us there drinking and dancing till the early morning light…A killer party it was!
Saturday 25.10.2014 – day II
After exploring more of Madrid during the day, the time had passed and we were ready for the second day of SGM. This time Sweet Ermengarde, Pretentious Moi? and Bloody Dead & Sexy were the performing acts.
Around 21:30 Sweet Ermengarde hit the stage with their high class dark tunes. I had seen these guys live before, so I knew what to expect. They are playing a unique kind of “goth rock” mixed with “dark wave” elements. They are one of the very few bands of today that are playing 100% LIVE. No recorded stuff on their performances and this is very important. They played songs from their brilliant debut album, along with a brand new one and an excellent cover version of the Bauhaus classic “The Passion of Lovers”. Remember these guys, because we are going to hear a lot from them in the future.
In the Time
A Promise to Fulfill
For This Moment
An Eye for an Eye (new song)
The Passion of Lovers (Bauhaus cover)
The next band was one of my all time favorites. This would be the second time for me to see them on stage. According to my opinion, Pretentious, Moi? sound like the way Rosetta Stone should sound after their early days, if they wanted to lead their music in a more modern direction, without neglecting their “goth” elements. They are one of the few bands that manage to combine the “trad goth” style with the electronic sound in such a perfect way. Definitely one of the biggest hopes of the UK goth scene. This makes sense as the band’s line up consists of some old school goth rockers that left their mark in the scene through the years. Gordon Young (Dream Disciples/Seraphin Twin/A Ring of Thorns), Rachel Speight (Die Laughing/A Ring of Thorns) and the one and only Tim Chandler (Manuscript/Sins of the Flesh). They played all the hits from their excellent debut album, along with 2 new songs which were nothing less than masterpieces. People were dancing during their show and generally there was a high mood in the atmosphere.
Better Late Than Never
Turn out the Lights (new song)
Living Dead and Undecided
Faith and Reason
Debutante (new song)
One last break and the headliners of the evening appeared on stage. Bloody Dead & Sexy are playing an old-school post punk style that is not my cup of tea. I respect them though for being active for many years and making decent albums. During their gig the audience were dancing and jumping around. The singer is a charismatic frontman and is leading the band to a higher level. One of the highlights of their performance was when their singer got off the stage and became a part of the audience, in some moshing action! Overall, a great show.
After a few more drinks we ended up at “La Leyenda” club for the second after show party. Billy, being a long time goth-rock connoisseur, spinned great tunes once again. Unfortunately we had to catch an early flight in the morning, so we couldn’t stay for long.
Concluding, I would like to congratulate the SGM team for all their hard effort to put this really great event together. You guys did a hell of a job. Keep the fire burning!
We will be back to Goth Rock with you again…. This is a promise!