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Danske Nætter (2/4) • ANNA VON HAUSWOLFF live in Skt. Lukas Kirke, Århus (Nov 17th 2021)

Skt. Lukas Kirke

Besides the music I of course brought some cameras with me to explore the city, but this touristic side of my stay felt underwhelming, which partly is just the risk of traveling in this time of the year. The window to use daylight isn't that big and the weather, well... I wandered around for a couple of hours and didn't even use all of my toys, because it was so fucking wet and grey. And then I didn't even take a bag with me, so that I had to hide them under my jacket or let them get as soaked as my clothing.

Maybe it was just these circumstances, but I also found Århus to be rather uninspiring, like a Hamburg knock-off with some original Danish flair, but the same tendency to build weird monolithic designer architecture at the harbour.
Some of my digital toy camera shots are still not bad, and I'll have to see if my opinion changes, once I got my films - which aren't even full yet - developed.

Also a lot of christmas terror and shopping possibilities close to my hotel, but if you needed something specific you could search your ass off, as I experienced when I just wanted to get some stupid tourist mug or something similar to use the water boiler in my room to make tea.

I didn't get any of my stuff completely dry, but at least my shoes were water-proof and it was enough not to catch a cold, when I  walked over to this night's venue. Good, because it was quite a long walk until i arrived at St. Lukas Church.
Did I mention that on the previous day, before I drove to Denmark after lunch, I finally got rid of that one very annoying tax and officially left Church? Yes, I know, it's surprising that I was even still in there for so long. The explanation is laziness. As if those couple of minutes in the register office were such a big deal.

So yesterday I abandoned the club - and tonight I was already back in a church again.

This was quite a different setting than a couple of weeks ago when I saw Anna von Hausswolff the last time, performing with her band Bada in the Hafenklang, Hamburg.

Her album "All Thoughts Fly" was written for pipe organ with six hands plus electronics, which means that Anna and two of her band members  are operating the instrument itself, while there are speakers on the other side of the room, over which you can hear it amplified and modulated by a fourth musician. If you're interested in actually watching how that looks, I highly recommend the stream from the album release concert over a year ago.

When you're actually there in person you probably won't see much, because in most churches the organ is out of sight. Skt. Lukas Kirke was no exception, as the organ is played above and behind the heads of the listeners. So everything about this concert was unusual, starting with the decision where to sit. The middle of the room, where organ and speaker sounds meet, was recommended.

It was an event where you just had to sit quiet and immerse yourself into the sound. Of course the organ was loud, but not by far Sunn O))) level loud. You probably could still have shouted over it, since in a church, every sound is intensified.
That and the whole code of behaviour inside religious properties led not only to everyone whispering before the show, but also to a strange, a little uncomfortable reluctance to applaude between songs, until finally someone took it (literally) into his or her hands to stop that madness and clap, which was quite a relief.

Of course it wasn't a very long concert, since the setting didn't allow to just throw in some regular encores, so it really was just the instrumentals from "All Thoughts Fly".
They sounded different here and there, because every pipe organ has its own size and sound characteristics, but that only made it more interesting.

It was a wonderful, somehow sophisticated but still very raw and pure experience, an inspiring mystical journey - and afterwards it was a true delight to see how happy the artist herself was to finally share this work with an audience again.

I don't envy anyone who's organizing European tours right now. Soen and Ocean Hoarse, who I had seen on the previous night already had to announce cancellations of shows in the Netherlands and Belgium, and Anna von Hausswolff also had to move a show from Leipzig to Halle, because of different Corona rules within Germany's federal states... which has been one of the biggest plagues within the plague here all along.
Well, at least my home state, which shares a peninsula with Denmark, is the safest / sanest region here at the moment. Which doesn't mean I was ready to drive back there yet, because I still had more plans in this city...

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