The journey to the gig was eventful to say the least. Berlin is huge and has an underground comparable to London; as we made our way there we were met with the stomach churning sight of a middle aged man dropping his pants and an unwelcome load on the busy street.
As we walked to the venue we were amazed by the street art that was all around us, like a colossal Manchester Northern Quarter on acid. The venue itself is surrounded by a climbing wall and well used skatepark. The beer garden allows you to take in your own beer and as we entered we saw many familiar excited faces with plastic bags full. There were many fans from Manchester, but also Doncaster Liverpool, London and even Hungary; all had combined the chance to see Berlin with watching one of their favourite bands. The band attract a friendly crowd of loyal supporters and the Manchester support was especially strong with over twenty familiar faces making the trip over.
After a few drinks we made our way up the long fairy lit metal staircase and entered the venue to the pulsing synth sounds of Glasgow four piece The Ninth Wave. An excellent support choice for Berlin where we found synth pop and dark wave is huge.
The Blinders walked on to stage to raucous cheers of ‘Manchester la la la’ echoed by ‘Doncaster la la la’. Thomseems to spread his now iconic dark eye make up a little further every gig and it reached far down his neck tonight. Charlie was straight to the front of the stage, the neck of his bass reaching out into the crowd to their delight. Every word of every tune was sung by the Manchester crowd until a new tune called ‘The Writer’ was thoughtfully dedicated to Manchester fans who were enjoying every moment, dancing, moshing and even crowd surfing in a much smaller venue than the band would now occupy in the UK.
Thom then jumped off stage like the true showman he is and took the opportunity to walk straight through the crowd and up to the stunning blonde Ninth Wave bassist Emilia, looking into her eyes and singing intently while she looked away nonchalantly. The venues name ‘Cassiopeia’ came to mind as she is said to be the beautiful and arrogant queen of Aethiopiain Greek mythology.
Everyone left the gig on a high and we spoke to the friendly locals who loved the band and excitedly referenced Black Sabbath and Killing Joke. From a bemused start the Berliners were definitely dancing and moshing like the English contingent by the end of the gig.
We left and partied into the early hours in the amazing underground clubs of Freidrichshein which is the arty hub of the former East Berlin. It was a night and a trip that won’t be forgotten. How a band like The Blinders articulate their thoughts and make you feel is something that imprints on your mind forever, it leaves you wanting to come back for more and we are all so glad we did! Berlin will live in our hearts forever.