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Deine Lakaien @ Entremuralhas 2013 | FESTIVALPHOTO

Deine Lakaien @ Entremuralhas 2013


Lateness. Expectation. Murmur. Disquietude. Magic.

The lights go out and I'm not able to write in the dark, but it doesn't matter… nothing else matters anymore. They come in. Undaunted. Big. No introductions needed. The first notes of "Where You Are" break the silence and, at last, the voice fills the space in its whole. The piano is there, discreet, unobtrusive, like a background story…
Veljanov does an engaging ballet almost without moving. Big.

"Second Sun" follows. He sits down, but he's bigger than ever. The emotions start to flow, without control, without boundaries. If life was an electrocardiogram this performance would roam through the entire spectrum of human emotion.

After "Who'll Save Your World" they offer, with great affection, to take us on a journey through their discography. With a perfect symbiosis, Alexander and Ernst get involved in a flawlessly choreographed dance. After playing "The Game" the audience is completely absorbed. Veljanov whispers, like he is fighting himself in an inner monologue.

According to the instructions of "Follow Me", the songs succeed each other, the story keeps being told and, without hesitation, everyone accompanies… no single misstep, perfect grasp of this eternal moment. Nothing bothers Veljanov. The hairstyle has been the same for almost 30 years, so has the company. Faithful, loyal, inseparable. Why change something that can't possibly get any better? Vertiginous. Exceeding talent for so much humbleness.

During "One Night" I look down to the audience from the Press gallery. There isn't a single cellphone light on. Pure analog pleasure. It would be a blasphemy to divide attentions and who knows how we would get punished. And Horn threatens with his majestic piano, tenebrous, big.
Time has stopped in this journey and no one has the courage to disturb it. In this capsule where we find ourselves, nothing can touch us. We go to Macedonia, we go wherever he wants us to. Where he allows us to follow him…

Suddenly, a little surprise - a song inspired by Neil Gaiman's short story "The Goldfish Pool". Ernst prepares for "A Fish Called Prince" by making the piano seemingly out of tune, sounding almost like a harpsichord. A new world, with a distinctive atmosphere, opens up. We go everywhere, at their mercy… hypnotized… entranced… like a sirens lullaby.
There are only 2 spotlights in the stage and every once in a while Veljanov disappears from the penumbra into the shadows. His voice - a beacon in the dark.

Between songs someone screams "Love me 'till the end!!!" and Alexander dismisses them with a humorous "yeah… yeah…". They will not change the route. There is no space for digressions. It is what is is.

We keep going and arrive to "The Mirror Men". Aggressive. Assassination. The tempers gain a new momentum. Ernst plays with the piano cords like a xylophone in the hands of angered gods. I don't know where they are taking me, should I be afraid? I have to trust. A leap of faith. Horn abuses the piano, making it his slave. Nobody wants to believe what is happening before our eyes. We doubt the humanity of these beings. Demi-gods?

"Return" shows us that everything is fine after all. Little by little we start to accept them again as mere mortals, even if placed in a higher plane. They give us a warning… the next one won't bring any optimism, we better brace ourselves.
And indeed, during "Gone" I find myself looking back… not sure if I should have a nostalgic smile or a sad regard. We've all had days like that. He warned us… and he fulfilled the prophecy.

"Without Your Words" makes us walk through a more recent path, but no less tortuous. It's still not the time to breathe. After "Fighting The Green" there is a break. Completely necessary. The muscles can finally relax.

We return to the room for a French lesson. Perhaps "Vivre" will be useful to entrench all the knowledge we acquired in the first part of the performance. Alexander coughs. Not wanting to break character he apologizes in French. He starts over. Human, definitely.

We get the warning again… the next few minutes will not be happy ones. "Over And Done" is the next stop down this abrupt road and we see Alexander debating himself once more, like a disturbed man. Horn caresses the piano chords directly, echoing the despair.

While "Away" is busy ravishing what is left of my heart, I can't help wondering what goes on in the souls of these men, that makes them able to spit out this sort of emotions without even blinking.

I sit back for a while and watch "Blue Heart" and "Darkstar" unfold. Sometimes Veljanov looks like a marionette controlled by higher powers. Possessed. Visceral. Transformed.

They threaten with departure. But we cannot accept the end. No. Not like this. No.

But the prodigal sons return with "Wunderbar". Bliss. Return to childhood. Innocent smile. Everything is still possible. Sweetness in honesty.

We find in "Love Me To The End" the apotheotic culmination of all the previously poured energy. Catharsis.

Before leaving us they let out a timid "we love you"… And the feeling is undoubtedly mutual.

Writer: Mariana Evans
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