Middle of nowhere gig, new songs and new members of my tour family

Árstíðir – Bugewitz, September 19th, 2014

After the longest tourbreak in my personal history with Árstíðir it was finally time to see them again in Germany. : ) Unfortunately the new album didn’t get done in time, but I knew that would not stop them from playing new songs. The concert was wonderfully amazing from start to finish and within minutes I was in a different world, blissfully unaware of the people around me and only focused on the music. We got old songs and brand new ones, the guys made me laugh and brought me close to tears and judging by their reaction, they made the audience happy. It was a good night that people surely will remember, a perfect start.

As usual I as too excited to sleep well the previous night, wondering what the tour might bring. The fact that Poets of the Fall’s latest album came out on the first tour day didn’t make things easier and on the long train ride towards Ducherow I was listening to it no-stop. Sometimes, loving more than one band this much gets a bit complicated and once in a while I start wondering if mixing them is going to work, but usually there is no need to worry. The switch from one to the other is easy, the contrast making it all the more interesting. Thus, I allowed myself to get immersed in ‘Jealous Gods’ while traveling and started thinking about Árstíðir once I had arrived. Planning ahead for weeks, I had packed them a “care package” for long and boring hours on the road. It turned out heavier than originally anticipated and I had a hard time lugging it around. Yet I knew it was gonna be worth the trouble.

Bugewitz does not have a train station or hotel, so I opted for staying in Ducherow, 6 km away. When I got to my hotel and hear it might be difficult getting a taxi I wasn’t so sure about the greatness of my plan any more. 😉 However, it worked out in the end and I got to the venue around six pm. Upon arrival I met A. and K. from Poland who had driven all the way from Warsaw (about the same travel distance as I had) and were planning to do most of the tour. It made me happy to find other traveling fans. There seem to be so few of them in this fandom. : )

Checking in on the guys I delivered the package, said hello and got hugged. It made me so happy to see the guys again. They were debating whether they should unpack right away or not, but when they decided on later, I went back outside – luckily the soundcheck could be heard from there. Had a lovely chat with the other fans, later with Masha and finally some food before the gig. The organizers were quite nice, the venue was a good size and filled up quickly once they opened the door. There were a few more people that had traveled far to be there.

The guys started a little late and I had the feeling they were somewhat nervous about this first concert of the tour. They were a four-piece band that night since Gillaume could not make it to this first gig. It took some rearranging, but it worked well. I knew it would since they had already done this in Roznov. Until I heard the first notes at soundcheck I might have wondered if I could get into the mood for their songs after being completely occupied with Poets of the Fall for most of the day. By the time the concert started, any doubts had long vanished. It took only a few notes to make a big happy smile appear on my face and when I took a look over at A. and K. it was the same for them. 😀

Árstíðir began on familiar territory with ‘Heiðin’ and ‘Látum okkur sjá’ but very soon, right after ‘Orð að eigin vali’ surprised us with a brand new song called ‘Silfurskin’. It was beautiful on so many levels that I’m lacking the words to describe it. I just stood there in wonder, letting the music seep through my being and into my soul. They never cease to amaze me, always coming up with melodies that are almost too beautiful to bear. <3

I can’t remember which song it was where Gunnar was missing the capo for the baritone guitar and had to go search for it while Karl told us stories. It was a nice and relaxed atmosphere and nobody cared about the fact that they had to stop and think once in a while before they started a song. The setlist worked nicely, with a good mix of new and old songs and the sound at the venue was amazing too.

They played so many of my favorites that night and even kept one a cappella song in the setlist. To my happy surprise they kept ‘Siðasta Kveðjan’ too and once again the song made me choke up. It was the perfect ending to the first set. Spent the break with Masha, Linda and the Polish women, chatting and having a good time. It wasn’t so bad to get 20 minutes to recover between sets.

They started again with ‘Ages’ a song that Karl introduced as “probably our most popular song, no matter how hard we try to make other songs popular.” Ages? I always thought the most popular song was ‘Ljoð í sand’. Either way, I love both. 🙂 It made me especially happy to get ‘You just have to know of me’ right after. It is one f those songs I could listen to in an endless loop without ever getting tired of it. 🙂 It was time for the “Shooting rifles in the desert” story with ‘The Cannon’ and the song had changed unexpectedly. I’m not sure yet if I like the current version, but I’ll get the chance to hear it a few more times before this tour is over.

‘Someone who cares’ was still every bit as beautiful as I remembered it <3 and after ‘Days & Nights’ they treated us to another brand new song called ‘You again’ for which Daníel and Gunnar put down their guitar, concentrating on singing, only accompanied by the piano and the violin. It was breathtaking. 😮 ‘Shine’ had also changed again, but this change worked well for me and ‘Nú gleymist ég’ provided the perfect ending to the second set. The guys got roses from the organizers before they left the stage.

After the break, people had gradually moved to the front and were sitting on the floor right before the stage. Now they were clapping and stomping their feet to get an encore which the guys gladly came back for. ‘Ljoð í sand’ and ‘Kill us’ was a powerful combination to end the show with. I had not expected these two in the encores, but they did the trick. : ) The band came back one more time to sing ‘Góda veslu göra skal’ in the audience.

The night ended with chats and hugs before I had to leave and get back to my hotel. Much later after I had already edited the first pictures, I got a message about how much they had liked my care package. Success! With smile on my face, I finally went to bed.

Setlist:

Heiðin
Látum okkur sjá
Orð að eigin vali
Silfurskin
Næturylur
Moonlight
Land mins föður
Siðasta Kveðjan

Ages
You just have to know of me
The Cannon
Someone who cares
Days & Nights
You again
Shine
Nú Gleymist ég

Encore:
Ljoð í sand
Kill us
Góda veslu göra skal

pictures from this concert

Árstíðir Germany Tour 2014: 1 concert down, 9 to go. Next stop: Syke

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