The Mittelalterlich Phantasie Spectaculum (medieval fantasy spectacle) is a travelling medieval culture festival, that will make 24 stops all over Germany this year. Last weekend’s location was Speyer and we decided to drive there. They offer two days of medieval fun from morning till late at night. For me of course, the best part is the music!
They had over 20 bands confirmed for the various locations. Since we were there only on Saturday afternoon, we got to see Rapalje, Saltatio Mortis and Faun.
In Speyer, the Spectaculum takes place in the park behind the cathedral, which you can see on the far right in the picture above. Here’s Rapalje playing on stage II right behind the cathedral wall:
They are an Irish-Folk-Band from the Netherlands and I must say they are quite entertaining! They play traditional Irish, Scottish and Dutch folk songs as well as their own material, sung in English and Dutch. All the band members are multi-instrumentalists and according to Wikipedia they even invented their own instrument – the Gitouki! They wear kilts on stage and one band member actually designed his own tartan and is now the only member of his personal Clan McTreashcaighn! 😀 Rapalje are featured first in my video below.
The second show we caught was by the amazing Saltatio Mortis, who are a German medieval rock band, signed with Napalm Records and are considered giants of the genre. They alternately publish albums with purely medieval music or medieval rock. They played four shows a day in Speyer and during their last show they recorded a new live CD! The instruments they use are the bagpipe, the shalm, the jaw’s harp, the actual harp, the didgeridoo and so on and so on! If you get a chance to see them live I recommend you take it, because their shows are so much fun, awesome music and great entertainment! I managed to capture the entire song “in taverna” and a “commercial break” on video, which you can see below. If you don’t speak German, before the first songs they explain that “in taverna” is dedicated to their innkeeper. Apparently there’s a very special relationship between a man and his innkeeper, which women can not understand… 😉
Later at night we saw Faun, a Bavarian paganfolk band that you may know, too. They play their own compositions interspersed with historical songs from various ages and regions. Accordingly, the vocals are performed in a variety of languages, including German, Latin, Greek and Scandinavian languages. They play historic instruments as well, like the Celtic harp, the Swedish nyckelharpa and the hurdy gurdy, just to name a few. You may have heard that Eluveitie’s Anna Murphy was inspired to learn how to play the hurdy gurdy by Faun. In my video you can see and hear Faun performing ‘Rosmarin’ (rosemary), a part of “Die Drei Wanderer” (the three wayfarers) and an epic tambourine solo!
I made a second video about the Spectaculum, in which you can see the groups Ars Equitandi and Fictum in a knight’s tournament.Below the video I’m sharing some more impressions from MPS 2012: