1996/06/22, Helter Skelter festival, Olympia Reitstadion Riem, München, Germany

Roadkill 1996

June 19
June 22
June 29
 Hamburg (cancelled)
July 13
July 14

The first concert of Helter Skelter festival with both Sisters and freshly reformed Sex Pistols. One of these two was headlining, and headlining act's personnel didn't include a drum machine.

This was the first time fans in Germany, one of the top Sisters markets (if not THE top one) in Europe saw Eldritch's natural hair color. That is, if there were much fans in there, because reportedly both the promotion and the realization of the festival was terrible enough to scare them away.

This was also one of not-too-many daylight gigs of Sisters (although this wasn't so unusual in 1996).

Setlist | Reviews

This setlist might be (and most likely really is) incorrect. If you have access to the real thing, please take some of your time to check it and send in corrections/confirmations.

  • Ribbons
  • Amphetamine Logic
  • Flood II
  • Alice
  • On the Wire/Teachers/On the Wire
  • This Corrosion
  • Come Together
  • First and Last and Always
  • Train/Detonation Boulevard
  • Under the Gun
  • Giving Ground
  • Temple of Love
  • Vision Thing
  • Jolene
  • Thanks to Alexander Ord (lex@quinnster.demon.co.uk), Robin Colman (sisters@pandora.be)

    Setlist | Reviews

    Written by Robin Colman (sisters@pandora.be), German translation was published in Head and Star fanzine

    'Where the fuck is this Reitstadion?', 'Where the hell is RIEM?', that's what we had been asking for more than an hour before somebody could give us the correct location. Three times we were driving 100 meters from the entrance without seeing any kind of sign, poster or anything else.

    Very glad we found it, driving 900 km without being sure if the Sisters are going to play. What kind of organization is this?

    Passed the entrance, very happy to see Sisters T-shirts at the merchandise stand. Not a lot of people for such a big festival, and certainly not a lot of Sisters fans, maybe 100? It had been raining whole night and the Reitstadion was one complete slough. No moving without getting stuck in the mud and horse shit.

    After seeing a few songs of every band that came before The Sisters of Mercy (none of them was very convincing) and having heard H-Blockx yelling "move" about 200 times in 6 different songs (is this the only word they know?), it was time for The Sisters to appear. My watch showed 8:00 PM.

    Only one problem we didn't count (fuck the organization!): no Sisters fans were allowed to go near the stage. 30 meters from the stage they've placed crush barriers in order not to let anybody in the first rows except for about 150 lucky 14 year old rap fans. If you were with the first 150 (I guess) people that entered the festival, like these young neighborhood kids, then you were lucky enough to get the pink bracelet that allowed you to get into the first rows. Of course, the Sisters fans did not come that early! For me there was only one way to get into these first rows: one of the kids was going out of the "front rows", and I asked him if he was planning to see The Sisters of Mercy. 'The what...?", he asked. 'Never heard of them.' I gave him the choice of his life: to give me his pink bracelet, or to go home broken. He chose the easiest way.

    8:25. The lights go on, smoke gets on the stage and in the wind, my adrenaline is driving me crazy as I go to the first row without any problems (haven't seen a lot of other Sisters fans there). Four Sisters are entering the stage, the first one, thin as ever and without his stupid hat, Adam Pearson, who now was cut his hair and looks much more like a Sister. Second there is the new keyboard player, I believe his name is Dave, and that is really all I know about him, except for the fact that he likes beer. And the third is the new Sister, Chris, and don't laugh, but this guy used to play with a band called 'Babylon Zoo'.

    Andrew Eldritch hits the stage, small and thin as ever, but you can hear the public being surprised: BLOND, he has painted his hair BLOND, no way, this is not possible.

    No time to discuss it, Ribbons has already begun and like always with this kind of organization, the PA fails to connect Andy's microphone in time to let the public hear the first sentence of 'Ribbons'. Andrew is more alive than ever, the public isn't, what would you do if you got stuck that far from the stage by a crush barrier and two meter security guys? I've tried to make some photos, but when three of these security bastards tried to get my camera, I changed my mind.

    Andrew plays no new songs, the hits are coming along, Logic, Alice, On the Wire (with a marvelous Teachers), Come Together, First and Last and Always, Train, Detonation Boulevard, Giving Ground where I was sitting on friend's shoulders and was recognized by a smiling Andrew, Temple of Love, This Corrosion and Vision Thing. His voice had been better in the past, he enjoyed the gig, but was not so pleased with the lack of enthusiasm in the public, he couldn't know about the crush barriers! He didn't say much, never did and there were no new songs and, without the color of his hair, no surprises. Yes, there is Rodney (Cassandra Complex) to get the microphone stand straight again. He is now officially most important roadie of the Sisters and one Andrew's best friends.

    The Sisters are back, good reactions in the public, but not good enough. Only a little smile comes on Andrew's face and only one more song is to follow. Surprise of the night, The Sisters of Mercy are now covering Dolly Parton's Jolene again. the gig took only one hour and was certainly not the best that I ever saw, but I was very pleased to have seen it and I was already looking forward to Hamburg next weekend.

    The Sisters have played an identical set to the secret gig in Leeds two weeks ago, where they did a warm up gig under the name of Near Meth Experience. Only 50 people were allowed to go in (as the lace was only that size) and together with the crew and the band there were no more than 80 people that have seen this gig!

    A nine hour drive was waiting for me, but I believe that this was nothing compared to the two Swedish guys that I've met and who had been driving 4000 km to see Andrew perform for the first time in their lives! They will agree with me that this seeing The Sisters of Mercy live is a great experience.

    Be there next time, of you can't be a real fan!

    Written by Ian J. Palmer (I.J.Palmer@comp.brad.ac.uk) for Dominion mailing list

    It was a gloomy, wet evening at the Olympic Riding Stadium in Munich. The mud was knee-deep by the time SoM took to the stage (8.30). The 'VIP's in their enclosure by the stage showed no more interest in the forthcoming visitation than they had in any other, and were duly pelted with assorted drinking vessels once more.

    The set began with Ribbons, ended with an encore of Jolene, and progressed Fenton-like in-between. AE introduced the band as 'Near Meth Experience' for those in the know. He wore a green and black top which was removed for the encore (ST is not our fashion correspondent, hence the lack of detail here - Ed.).

    In all, AE was on form. Strutting and posing. The crowd, however, were not. Not much jigging about until Vision Thing (but that's the Germans for you). No Reptile House T-shirts were spotted, in fact not many Sister's T-shirts at all. I (looking suitably Reptile-like) was approached by two SoM T-shirt wearing Germans who tried to buy speed of me (nice to see the same kind of clean living fans on the continent, or maybe they were just singing A. Logic and our correspondent had stretched his expenses account a little too far in the beer tent? - Ed.) but that was about it.

    The merchandise? Road Kill '96 front, Uncle Andy on the back, garish colored print, no specific dates.

    For anyone who is interested Sex Pistols were great.

    Simon 'The Saint' Templer - Munich - wet, muddy but happy
    Reporting for the Palmer Corporation.

    Written by Chris Beal (Chris.Beal@uk.sun.com) for Dominion mailing list

    Well it appears not many people actually made it to Munich. 4 of us went over - Me, Andrea, Spencer and Pat (if any of you know us), and we didn't see any other people from over here. Not surprising given the distance from the UK, but I'll spare you the traumas of the journey over there. Suffice to see that it took over 24 hours of traveling for one hours gig. Well worth it though.

    What can I say, we all know what a gig is like. Yes Eldritch is Blonde, Yes he has scrapped the backing vocals (the only bad thing in my opinion).

    I can't remember the set list exactly, but from where I was (which was in the "pit" at the front) the crowd were really getting in to it. A few kind people were very generous with their shoulders, and the sound was good. I do like daylight gigs 'cause you can see the band so much better.

    That's about it, I don't reckon I'll make it to Hamburg due to but I should make it to Ochtrup. Maybe there will be a few more people I recognize there (like any one).

    Tickets were scanned by (l-r) David Hlavacek (dr.komisar@post.cz) and Robin Colman (sisters@pandora.be).

    Setlist | Reviews | Other dates