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2009-09-19 DE – Osnabrueck - Kleine Freiheit

Things still seem to be not that easy for British rockers ANATHEMA. They still don’t have a label home and thus live kinda shadowy existence. That I got aware of current tour dates happened by mere chance and first, after half of the tour was already done. Luckily not the German parts ;) And luckily a work mate changed shift, giving me the chance to check in for the show in Osnabrueck by short notice ;)

It’s a wonderful late summer day I enjoy much on the balcony before I head to Osnabrueck at a vespertine hour. I’ve never been at Kleine Freiheit before but this venue is easily to find, located behind the central station. It’s an old depot, now jazzed up as a beach area with many funnily named clubs. Beach sand everywhere and palms that looked pretty tousled. The Kleine Freiheit can only be entered through an old bus, with the ticket lady behind the wheel and securities at entrance and exit. Inside more beach atmosphere. Sand, chairs, hammocks, cuddly corners, more palms and a lot of lights and candles. It’s a great chill-out atmosphere there seeing everybody enjoying drinks, life and waiting for the evening to get kicked off.

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ANATHEMA and LEAFBLADE guys sit there too, relaxed and in great mood. Danny is singing along to the background music warming up is vocal chords.
The club is tiny, a former canteen, the stage even tinier, not even a hand’s breadth high. Taped and turned beer boxes (higher than the stage itself) marks the barrier and it’s hot inside. As for this, prizes for drinks are really fair :)

Clock strikes 9 and Sean Jude, creative mind behind :: LEAFBLADE :: enters the stage, followed by Danny Cavanagh, who now entirely replaced Pete Gilchrist who left in January. After many, many years LEAFBLADE, once emerged from the Welsh band Valle Crucis; have finally their debut album ready. It is called Beyond, Beyond and was freshly released on September 10. And of course, most of the songs tonight (The Roots And The Stones, Rune Song and Sunset Eagle) came from this record. By the way, first one reminded me much of Bob Dylan. Generally speaking LEAFBLADE blend classic singer/songwriter compositions with folk influences. But no flutes… um… Tin Whistles live on stage, only the guitars by both Sean and Danny, additional bass guitar by Jamie Cavanagh and various drum work, starting with Mick Reedan on Djembés, followed by John Douglas and Vincent Cavanagh on drums. Latter one tried it incognito at first, but with a pulled down wool-hat you can hardly see what you play and Sean’s hint: „someone you might recognize“ made Vincent’s mummery lapsed anyway ;)
The venue is crowded what brought Danny to make the first rows sitting down. No sooner said than done. The guys were sitting too and that quite deep. Unfortunately many people in the background were talking, what was quite disturbing. Taking photos was almost impossible. When I had finally found a place to sit down anywhere close to the stage, security came and forbid further clicks. Hm. Too bad. However, LEAFBLADE played a contemplative but intensive show closing with Going To California. Great!

A half hour of break to complete equipment. Most people left to get some fresh air and regretted. I didn’t move an inch, making sure that I now can take photos, at least from the right side of stage. And it got really, really crowded and packed afterwards. :: ANATHEMA :: played almost a two hours lasting and most of all breathtaking show. Just wow! Never experienced ANATHEMA that energetic and intensive and entertaining before. It was unbelievable, seeing me and the others almost freaking out. As already said, the dudes were really in high spirits, joking and fooling around with Vincent always making cool wisecracks and pulling faces ;) First part of the show closed with Flying, leaving the stage to Danny only, who performed an acoustic Are You There?. Before the band showed up again, Vincent entered the stage with something sparkling on his head that looked like a lampshade, 70’s style, and wearing a pirate flag while stating something. Heh ;) In a twinkling of an eye, mood changed head over heels for One Last Goodbye that visibly touched Vincent. Again, the most intensive version I ever experienced. Another highlight was the brand new song Universal, with a sharp tongue announced as a song from Oasis ;) Seems like Vincent doesn’t like them… By the way, according to stuff I read, this song was written by drummer John Douglas. It’s a beautiful song! My respect! And if this song can be taken as reference for the upcoming album, expect something great! ;) Meanwhile the “headdress” moved to keyboarder Les who wasn’t really happy about it, because he couldn’t see anything and got rid of it quickly. I wish I could have kept in mind all these funny sayings… Anyway, ANATHEMA got frenetically response, as usual, seeing the crowd singing along: I just say: Fragile Dream! Pure emotions! Pure gooseflesh! Same goes for the final song A Dying Wish! Stunning! Really. What a show!
Setlist: Intro, Balance, Closer, Empty, Lost Control, Oceans, Angels Walk Among Us, Deep, Temporary Peace, Anyone, Anywhere, Judgement, Panic, Hope, A Fine Day To Exit, Flying // Are You There?, One Last Goodbye, Universal, Hindsight Fragile Dreams // Sleepless, A Dying Wish


story & pics © Dajana