HAFTW’s Summer of Gigs

The summer of Her Absence Fill the World was an interesting one.

The band; which were featured in the previous issues of DolmusXpress, went on its first three live shows throughout the course of last summer. 

First one was in a music festival called Art Carnivale in Steendam, Netherlands. 

Second one was in a club called Christa Kupfer, located on Maybachufer, Berlin. 

And the last one was at a streetfest called Kiezfest, on Mainzer Straße; in Neukölln.

These are three very different settings to play your first three gigs in, so it became impossible not to wonder how it felt for the band. 

We met up over Discord, and they answered four simple questions.

This was the first one.

Which one was the most challenging?

Sascha: I think Kiezfest, for me. I felt a bit strange about the audience, because it was a moving audience. If you’re feeling a bit nervous maybe, the moving audience will be more challenging in my opinion because you will not get a direct feedback regarding whether they like it or not. They kind of just ignore when they pass through. 

Kubi: I was thinking the first one was really challenging, but then listening to what Sascha was saying and then I realized that yeah actually the last one was challenging in a different way because people are moving. It’s hard to focus, it’s really hard to build an atmosphere playing on the street. 

Kubi then adds,

Kubi: For me they were all actually challenging in different directions. But it’s good to be challenged, right?

Sascha: I think also the feeling you got afterwards, when you look at it retrospectively; it’s the balance of anxieties or challenges you had before compared to the reward you feel afterwards and for that I think the last one was the most challenging, because the reward wasn’t balancing enough. 

Which very gratefully brings us to the second question. Which one was the most fulfilling?

Sascha: The first will always be super special and beautiful, and it felt very fulfilling. The one in the club too, they were fulfilling in different ways. I can’t really pick between those two.

Kubi: It’s really hard to rank them. The first one was super magical. It was our first concert, first of all. Also we were weirdly headlining. In our first concert. So it was extra pressure and it was a bit ridiculous but it was amazing. We prepared for months for that concert. 

But I would say Christa Kupfer was really special for me too because Christa Kupfer is home to me and we were presenting our project to our friends. Our family I would say. Because of that it was like a launch for us. 

The conversation then drifts into how the experience of a live performance is split in two ways: The preparation and the act. That brings us to our third question.

Which one was the most exciting?

Sascha: I think they were differently exciting. In the festival there was a more surprising and nice interaction with the people, but the club was exciting as well. It’s nice to see how music works in different surroundings and moods and where it can bring you emotionally in different settings. For example the Kiezfest was also exciting in this way, maybe exciting doesn’t have to mean positive all the time. It was exciting to see what’s happening there, which songs are working where and where they bring you emotionally. 

Kubi: I would agree with that. We had three different concerts in three different settings. We already have more gigs scheduled and what we have in the future will either be this or that. I mean I can’t imagine a different setting than a festival, or a club or a street festival. 

So we arrive at the final question.

Which one would they like to do again now that they know what they know?

Sascha: I think I would do the first two again. Not to make it better but it was super nice. I think I would feel a bit more relaxed so I can enjoy it a bit more. The last one was good practice as a performing artist, to play in front of an audience which is not giving you direct attention. I think even if it’s just one person, even if you feel maybe disappointed about it or disappointed about their reaction; I think it’s a good practice to play in front of them because this is your job in this moment. I think it’s good, even though it feels maybe weird. 

Kubi: Seriously, I’ll be really honest: I wouldn’t go back to any of them. They were amazing but they were once-in-a-lifetime things. But I have a wish. If I really had a magical power to go back I would go to our first concert as an audience member. I would love to experience that. I think at the end of the day it was an interaction and it doesn’t matter which end you are at -either the audience or the band. In the concert there were moments where we felt unified and I enjoyed it but I would enjoy it also from the audience perspective. 

Instagram: @herabsencefilltheworld
Spotify: Her Absence Fill the World

Interview: Yiğitcan Erdoğan