Sisters Of Mercy
25.02.2001 Brielpoort, Deinze, Belgium

My friend Erwin who's a die hard Sisters of Mercy fan picked me up from the train station of Deinze, after a train trip which included a lot of misunderstandings with people who only spoke Flemish (the language they speak in North of Belgium). Luckily I was able to find the right train and we arrived on time to Brielpoort, which is a hall that can hold approximately 2500 people. The place was sold out. The concert was scheduled to start at 8 p.m. I had nearly finished my first beer when the lights went down at 8.15 and the concert started.

I was not that familiar with the band and thus I didn't have that many expectations. There was a lot of smoke when the band came on and with all the smoke it took me a while to realize that they didn't have a drummer but a drum machine. It bothered me because I felt that the band was a bit handicapped without a real drummer. At first the band didn't seem to get a connection with the crowd. This probably had a lot to do with the fact that they started on time and people didn't have time to drink that much.

The soundcheck was done well except for the singer. He did have a unique voice but it was hard to hear him because his voice was "all mumble". But that didn't bother me for long because the guitar was tuned just right and it was massive. Sisters of Mercy really surprised me with a few songs that rocked and the guitarist really thrilled me at times. On the downside during some songs I felt like I was in a disco and some songs were a bit too gothic for me (but that came as no surprise).

I expected to hear "Temple of Love", "More", "Walk Away" and some other more well know SOM songs but they didn't play them. Instead they played a lot of their latest material, which to me was ok because it seems that they are going more towards stronger guitar riffs and more "basic" rock which suits me just fine. To me it felt they saved the best for last because during the last few songs they rocked the house. The crowd was finally with them and just as it started to feel that the athmosphere will soon reach the sky they called it quits. Maybe they hadn't programmed enough songs in their drum machine or something but nevertheless, the crowd (myself included) was hungry for more. The concert ended in whistling and booing after an hour and a half of play.

Overall I liked the concert though it would've been nice to hear more. I have to thank my friend Erwin who told me about the songs that I hadn't heard etc. On top of that he drove me back to Brussels so I didn't have to go to train station for another course of Flemish ABC.

By Petri Kautto,