When the International Music Award was recently presented in Berlin for the first time, the organizers were very lucky that Rammstein did not show up to receive their audience award.
Because this made a guest appearance in honor of the Berlin band an insane wow moment that Rammstein himself probably would not have been able to achieve: Peaches covered “You have” with a huge band plus a group of performers who only appeared in their underpants, which the singer slowly followed wore in front. Dressed in a black Dominatrix outfit, she gave the song, performed in jagged German, a viciousness that he has been missing for a good two decades.
In Berlin she became a star
The performance was also a kind of public dress rehearsal for Peaches own show, at which there is currently a reunion with the band and the dancers in the Berlin Volksbühne.
This spectacle to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Peaches bears the title “There is only one Peach with the Hole in the Middle” derived from one of her song lines and, after stops in Hamburg, London and Aarhus, is finally coming into town who began the transformation of Canadian educator Merrill Nisker into the genre and gender boundaries of electroclash icon Peaches. In 2000 the now faded label Kitty-Yo from Berlin-Mitte released their debut album “The Teaches of Peaches”. A rough, reduced song collection full of sex and self-confidence that belongs to Berlin’s world cultural heritage – just like Peaches herself, who has lived here for a long time and is one of the few international pop stars in the capital.
Factory show in XXL format
Two pieces from the album open the evening, with Peaches not showing up at first. Time to watch the twelve-piece band lined up in a gallery and above all the many great performers. Sometimes they move in robotic lines, sometimes they form sculptural formations, sometimes they sing a chorus. Then Peaches appears – although at first she is not really recognizable under her mop-like costume.
However, her voice is unmistakably demanding: “Tilt on my pussy / Whistleblow my clit / Watch it open up ’cause it can’t keep a secret.” This mixture of humor and explicitly sexual images is typical of Peaches’ and she draws also through this evening, which works like an art show in XXL format.
A nice reunion is the trapeze number by Empress Stah, which is known from the video of “Light In Places”. Exactly when Peaches sings “I’ve got light in places / You didn’t know it could shine”, a green laser lights up from the artist’s backside. The two are just as funny and striking used mega-penises on the last tour, which are blown up over the front rows – of course for the song “Dick In The Air”. After that, Peaches, whose breasts are often allowed to remain undressed that evening, challenges the fans to “Dick” chants and continues with “Shake Yer Dix”.
Whereby she explains in advance that there are also people without tits and cocks. She no longer sings just about “dix” and “tits”, but also about “bits” – a non-binary update that she also did for other texts. Even a queer feminist idol is still learning, which is why Peaches is still relevant.
However, she doesn’t seem to be in a particularly good mood for this first of four sold-out shows in the Volksbühne. Right at the start, when she walked down the catwalk in the first row of chairs, with a sharp tone, she announced that nothing should be deposited there. In the event of violations, the item will be kicked directly in the face of those who have not listened. Even later, the 53-year-old does not let any warmth towards her home game fans.
Iggy Pop on the canvas
For this, she burns off a brilliant show fireworks display, in which three songs performed on green laser harps form another highlight. The rock moments in “Kick It”, for which duet partner Iggy Pop is shown on a screen and the twitching Peaches are given a virtual kick, are always great. Or on “Boys Wanna Be Her”, to which four guitarists line up next to Peaches to scrub down the ingenious Joan Jett memory riff. It’s a gaudy self-empowerment gesture that makes male rock stars contest the electric guitar phallic symbol. What is underlined by the use of Gibson SGs and Flying Vs.
The principle of maximizing minimalistly produced music works extremely well. It is fun to hear how the three violins take over parts played by the synthesizer or how the wind instruments play the basslines. This appearance, which is characterized by a great sense of community, is sometimes reminiscent of Beyoncé’s “homecoming” show in Coachella.
Indeed, the two musicians found inspiration independently in New Orleans. There is even a small marching band insert on “There is only one Peach with the Hole in the Middle” – however, instead of six sousafons, like her colleague, Peaches only offers one. In the end, that can play the growling intro of “Fuck The Pain Away”. It can hardly get cooler for this instrument. And the fans have a nice catchy tune for their way into the new millennium.