27th September 2005 @ Rosi's / Berlin, GER
I've seen a lot of good shows in 2005, but this concert was the most anticipated one!!! Japan's one and only CHURCH OF MISERY visit Europe for the very first time, and when the first German dates have been confirmed, Opolus and I started to make our plans for a two-day trip to Berlin. We both love this band SO much, and will there ever be a chance in seeing them for a second time??? Only time will tell, and we won't wait for a second chance. Brother Opolus booked a hotel and ordered the train-tickets, and so we met at Wednesday morning at the railway-station in Essen to start our "doomed" mission. After 4 1/2 hours we arrived in Berlin, went to our hotel and made a small sightseeing tour at the Rosi's. Well, the club was still closed, and it looked as if it would never open, due to the wrecked environment around. If I ever had the chance to shot an apocalyptic movie, this would be the perfect location! But a few streets away, we found a snuggy pub and ordered cold beer and still felt like kids, waiting for Santa Claus.
Very soon, the wait was over and we went back to the Rosi's, where only a few people waited outside. That's where we met a friendly guy, who came all the way from Denmark to see CHURCH OF MISERY!!!! A few minutes later, the club was open and Opolus and I were positivly surprised by what we saw. It was a very old building, only one floor, and subdivided into several small comfortable rooms. Well, the room, where the band played was larger and a bar was also included. I liked the venue a lot, and it reminds me to the days when I used to visit squattered houses and so on. The first band was ROCKAWAY BEACH, and I never noticed them before. They performed their instrumental heavy rock in a solid way, but they need some development to stick out of the mass of similar-sounding bands. The band closed their show with a Black Sabbath cover-song, plus additional vocalist. At that point, nearly 60 people have found their way into the Rosi's, and they should witness an unforgetable show. After a short break came CHURCH OF MISERY and started their ultra-heavy high-energy Doom assault on the audience. Even people who weren't familiar with the band, began to dance or to bang their heads. This was the only logical result to this sonic zyklon, that started to crush the Rosi's.
During my life, I've seen hundreds of concerts, but there haven't been much bands, who have played on such an energetic level as CHURCH OF MISERY did. Without any break, they stormed through the first part of their set, which contained songs like "Soul Discharge", "I, Motherfucker" or "Red Ripper Blues", which are all from the latest album "The Second Coming". Vocalist Hideki was acting like a maniac, and during the first song he kicked the monitor-box from its place. This guy needed a lot of space for his special performance, and it was a pleasure to watch him as well as the other three guys. As a surfer, he was gliding on the heavy sonic waves that came from behind. In spite of all heaviness and brutality, the sound was also very blues-drenched and groove-laden, and reminds always to the first three Black Sabbath records, without just being a rip-off. As on the last record, Hideki played also an vintage syntheziser/keyboard for additional sound f/x, and although he had a few problems at the beginning, Mr. Maniac solved the problems during the show. In the middle of it, CHURCH OF MISERY showed their psychedelic side, and channeled their overwhelming energy into a trippy improvisation, that turns out great and drenched the Rosi's into a magic place.
Ok, the complete show was magic, but this groovin jamming just created a very intense and peaceful atmosphere. And very slowly, the sound became heavier and heavier to explode once again with the next outburst. It was time for "Filth Bitch Boogie" and again Hideki turned into an adrenaline-fueled madman, who was running through the audiences and I wondered from where he all this energy takes. I guess, after 70 or 80 minutes, the band left the stage, but the people wanted more, and so the band returned and ruled again without any compromise. When this remarkable show ended, I've seen a lot of lucky faces. Not only brother Opolus was speechless and happy, but also our Danish comrad and a lot more people. This healthy and loud injection, a substance mixed out of Sabbathian heaviness with the sonic power of the MC5's debut album and other stimulating ingredients, made us to very lucky men, and without any exaggeration I must confess, that this was one of the best Rock 'n' Roll shows I've seen in my life. Masterful! Thanks to CHURCH OF MISERY and Toreno from Leaf Hound Records for this special evening, all the other nice people I met, and of course, my buddy Opolus! Let there be DOOM!
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