In Spring of 2010, Christopher von Deylen (aka Schiller) released "Atemlos", the follow-up to his highly succesful album "Sehnsucht" ("Desire"). Like most of his previous audio releases, "Atemlos" had to be performed live on stage, so a tour through Germany followed. This was of course documented on both audio and video. The outcome on dvd is not simply called "Atemlos Live" (that title only applies to the separately released cd), but is now offered to his large and dedicated fan-base as the multi-media package "Lichtblick".
The version reviewed here is the one containing a double-dvd and cd.
The first dvd of "Lichtblick" contains the "Atemlos" concert as performed in Hamburg, which features the usual suspects of the Schiller band. The lightshow is impressive and takes things to an even higher level compared to "Sehnsucht" dvd-release. After an impressive introduction (an energetic instrumental version of "Playing with Madness" and the great "Soho") the band continues to play a selection of vocal and instrumental tracks of "Atemlos" next to some classic tracks from Schiller's back catalogue.
Although the music of "Atemlos" as a whole didn't grab me as much, there are some great moments during the live performance when songs like "Under My Skin", "Polarstern", "Irrlicht" or "Himmelblau" pass by. A downside for me are the vocal pieces with Angun, and I'm also not particularly fond of the e-guitar sound and contributions performed by the guitarist during the whole concert.
A pinnacle though in the second half of this dvd is the adventurous and slightly experimental piece "The Fire", featuring female singer Kate Havnevik. Here Mr Schiller shows he dares to take chances, as he combines arcs of exciting pads with Kate's evocative vocal parts.
This euphoric moment sadly vanishes with the flat-out, still uninspired sounding "Salton Sea" which follows next. It's also a pity the last section of the concert contains the weak track "Let It Rise" sung by Midge Ure, and e.g. not a strong one like "I will follow you".
The second dvd is something special, as it contains the secret Schiller concert-gig in the Berliner "Heimathafen", offering nine previously released pieces next to one new track.
This time we see Schiller play with Christian Kretschman (synths) and Cliff Hewitt (e-drums) in a club environment for a small but dedicated audience. There’s a great and intimate atmosphere, and more importantly, the music is also far more electronic-oriented, as only instrumental pieces are performed. Even the track "Leidenschaft" I didn’t care much for on the "Atemlos" studio album now shines brightly, next to the well-composed new piece "Heimathafen".
All in all, this is a very well done concert performance which focusses on the music and not on show.
In addition, the second dvd contains the short movie "Ten More" by Philip Glaser (offering a look backstage) and the short visual show "Zeitschleiffe" taking you into Schiller’s world of light. All 36 live tracks on both dvd's are featured in 5.1 DTS-sound, so the quality is outstanding.
Finally, there’s the 44-minute cd, aptly called "New Sounds", which is also something special. There are nine tracks in total, five instrumental, four with vocals.
The first piece "Lichtblick" is a great piece of work, which also applies to the studio version of "Heimathafen" and the great, warm textures of "Le Vide", while the vocal tracks are more poppy. From the latter, "Ghost" is great while I even liked the dynamic "Innocent Lies" sung by Angun. The overall soundquality and production of the recording is perfect.
All the above comes in sturdy case with a hardcover booklet with photo footage.