Sunday afternoon, Munich, back stage at the Zenith. Maurice Ernst is sitting on a sofa in one of the rooms giving an interview in a jovial mood, with no sign of the heavy birthday celebrations from the night before in his bones. The Bilderbuch boys were partying long into the early hours of the morning, having their bus shaken and taken over by The Beatsteaks in the proceedings to celebrate the lead singers’ birthday.
It is the calm before the storm. In around 4 hours he and his boys will once again take to the stage and try to win over what at times can be a difficult crowd for a young, relatively unknown Austrian band with a blonde lead singer. They will only get half an hour, enough time for the band to announce themselves, have a little chat half-way through and then say goodbye. It will be half an hour which could see them win valuable new fans in Germany, or fail to get the crowd in the mood for the band they have come to see, The Beatsteaks.
Come 8pm the Zenith is packed to the rafters. Some fans have been waiting outside since well before 5pm, beer in hand and a smile on their faces. Bilderbuch take to the stage with military punctuality as Maurice greets the crowd and is received with a polite response from the paying public. With such a short slot there is no time to hold back and the band jump straight into Maschin, the song that catapulted them into the limelight.
What follows is the four young lads offering up the best they have from ten years of writing songs. The crowd begin to warm to the Austrians with each passing tune as well, and Maurice can sense it as he begins to get more confident, culminating in him sticking his arse in the direction of the crowd and teasingly playing the maracas on it. The reactions range from smiles to confused shakes of the heads, but they seem to be enjoying the energy on stage.
There is only one song which really fails to get The Beatsteaks fans going, and that is Softdrink. Perhaps it is the funky nature of the song, or perhaps it was the excess hip gyrating on the part of Mike and Maurice, but this one doesn’t go down too well until the feverishly catchy ending.
The choice of songs was deliberate, Bildebuch could have bashed through 8 of their harder, faster numbers to get the crowd going, but that isn’t what they are about.
With the album Schick Schock set to be released at the end of February and their first headline tour already sold out in many locations across Austria, 2015 is going to be a massive year for Bilderbuch, and based on their performances supporting The Beatsteaks, they have more than what it takes to finally achieve their potential.