The concert at US Bank Stadium on Saturday night sounded as shaky as ever due to the venue’s poor acoustics, but the good news is that the new home of the Minnesota Vikings can endure fire and thunder.
The biggest and most explosive rock tour of the year pushed the $1 billion Minneapolis stadium to the test, as the German metal band Rammstein performed. The show drew one of the smallest crowds ever for a concert there, which is both ironic and not surprising.
Despite being one of the last major 2020 concert tours to arrive in town two years late due to COVID, fewer than 30,000 fans showed up. Thankfully, both gunpowder and heavy metal can last a long time.
Partial equating to Rammstein’s four-day-long, the 550-pyrotechnic-explosion-heavy stage production was inspired by the works of Andrew Lloyd Weber, Nosferatu, Mad Max, and Monster Truck Jam.
A large, illuminated stroller was employed, and vocalist Till Lindemann wore a backpack that released orange plumes in a circular pattern. The two-and-a-half-hour performance was just as strange as it was ear-splitting.
The new album the band made instead of performing during the pandemic, which included the songs “Armee der Tristen” and “Zick Zack,” was incredibly uninteresting at the outset. Not only did the songs bomb, but the band also quickly gave up on using any sort of pyrotechnics or other elaborate theatrical effects. One might have gotten the impression that the band members believed their audience was there just to listen to their music.
The fourth song, “Sehnsucht,” is where the tensions really begin to boil over. The song concluded on a marching beat, but gunfire erupted all the way to the upper deck of the stadium. That culminated in “Puppe,” with its flaming wagon and a deluge of black, ash-like confetti cascading across the entire public access floor, and set the tone for a series of more horrific stage effects.
Nothing compares to you, Minneapolis!
© Olaf Heine & Jens Koch pic.twitter.com/T5MFjkxyIQ
— Rammstein (@RSprachrohr) August 28, 2022
After that, during “Du Hast,” there were a series of spectacular visual exploits, including a battle of bouncing fireworks between the main stage and two enormous towers on the opposite side of the stadium. For the frenzied “Mein Teil,” Christian Lorenz, the keyboardist, performed inside a massive metal pot that Lindemann had to set ablaze with a flamethrower. These guys are the real deal as a band.
Rammstein members shone most during thrashiest tracks like “Radio” and ” You are so good,” sandwiched between costume and prop changes. The slower, sludgier work highlighted Lindemann’s limited vocal range in comparison to other great metal frontmen. His deep, gloomy, somber Dr. Frankenstein-esque tone was ultimately extremely boring.
In any case, music. The two encores—the first of which featured a hyperdramatic performance of “Engel” on the tiny second staircase with classical pianist-openers Duo Abelard—brought the spectacle aspect of the show to life.
By the time the band played the encore of “Ich Will” and “Rammstein,” the stadium was filled with smoke and nearly 20 degrees warmer than when the event began due to the pyrotechnics. When metal fans leave the venue smelling like they’ve been in a battle, you know the event was great.
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