Updated: Jan 15, 2020
In one word?
Both literally and figuratively.
Such was the burning excitement of everyone traveling to the arena, the crucible heat that must have been the crowds crushing together to get closer to the stage, the unexpected single eruption of explosives heralding their arrival, followed by the conflagration that was the burning passion and expressionism of possibly the most intense metal show on Earth.
No one does it like Rammstein, not even close!
The venue was breathtaking, the scale of the view from my upper tier seat was phenomenal, so much so that I wasn't worried about making it to the merchandise stand having seen the queue wrap around the building to the point of insanity. The love and dedication the fans have to a band that has touched them all emotionally in some way was certainly on show in that very long and hot queue. The entertainment started off with a relaxing twist, the two female classically trained pianist know as Jatekok opened on a smaller stage set back amongst the crowd playing piano covers of Rammstein's work, it was really rather touching and calming to listen to the usually heavy metal tunes drift softly through the air. With very little warning, Rammstein exploded on a stage that was itself an industrial metal work temple rather than a mere concert stage. It was a beast, with fire regularly bellowing forth from its peaks and from the sound pillars in the crowd.
At first I thought the arena screens were not working as no camera focused upon the band for the screens to see but shortly in to their set, a masterful use of lasers projected center stage what Till Lindermann's Microphone camera could see either being directed at his fellow bands mates or the audience; occasionally changing to what the regular cameras saw of the band.
There were mind blowing tricks throughout, starting with a giant pram that coincided with a screaming baby spewing flies from its mouth on the center stage, with huge gouts of black confetti being vomited forth at the crowd to add to the effect even as the pram became engulfed in flames. This was followed by yet more flames upon flames throughout the show. At the half way point Richard Kruspe took to a DJ set built in to the center tower of the stage being lifted in to the air as a killer remix of Deutschland rang out. The band soon returned in light up dance suits and made us all laugh and cheer at how surreal yet jaw dropping this show had become. The jaw drops didn't stop there; Lindermann appearing to launch fireworks above the heads of the crowd, and shooting a flame thrower at flake who took cover in a giant cauldron for the track 'Mein Teil' shortly followed by Flake being doused with a flame cannon instead and with no protection but a heat suit!
For the song Engel, the band made their way to the second stage and joined Jatekok and sang over the pianos, thousands of phone lights adding to the serenity of the moment.
In true over the top fashion, the band returned to the stage by surfing upon the crowd in inflatable dinghy's before ripping back in to the heavy stuff with the track Ausländer, the meaning of the song not being lost upon the crowd having just returned the way they did. Pussy was soon after and of course, Till once again got to barrage the audience with cum in the form of huge swathes of white confetti being shot from his mobile dick cannon.
Left and center image by @Skydivingpeewee (DJ Pee Wee)
To see Rammstein play live is always going to be a memorable experience but to see them play in arena where their full glory and boundless character can play out across a wide stage, supported by as many pyrotechnics and high tech special effects as they want, goes far beyond memorable. Their performance is bar setting, with the bar so high, none may ever reach such heights that this band have consistently held high and continue to raise even further.
Set list: Was ich liebe