VNV Nation sweated their asses off in first-ever livestream

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VNV Nation just delivered a blistering set of 20+ classic songs in their first-ever livestream concert. The COVID-friendly show was broadcast live on the web from the ISS Dome in Dusseldorf, Germany.

The show was called Coronation, a portmanteau of corona and VNV Nation. I’m not sure how many people watched around the world, but I imagine it was in the tens of thousands.

The lasers and lights were incredible. Each song had a unique light display that washed the stage in pulsating strobes and lasers that seemed to emanate from every corner.

When the cameras zoomed in on main man Ronan Harris, he was sweating profusely, more than I’ve even seen him sweat before. It was presumably a result of the enormous lighting rig and the energy he brings to every concert.

The Synthpop Fanatic crew watched from the East Coast of the United States, where it was still daylight. My friend Eddie flew in from Arizona to watch with us on our couch. We’ve seen nearly a dozen VNV shows together, but it was our first during the day. We’re planning to watch the replay after dark (and a couple of cocktails).

It was a classic VNV Nation set. They played big hits like “Joy” and “Beloved,” as well as several cuts from latest album, Noire. There was a beach ball and a blow-up unicorn. Ronan barely talked between songs, which is very unlike him, though he did give a shout-out to the furries.

There weren’t many surprises. I was hoping for an unexpected song like “Frika” or a long, long-awaited live performance of “Airships,” one of my favorite VNV Nation deep cuts. They did play an old-school, synth-heavy version of instrumental track “Electronaut,” and they made the live debut of “Only Satellites,” a song from Noire.

The highlight for me was experiencing Noire-closer “All Our Sins” played live. I missed the most recent tour, so I’ve only seen Youtube videos of it in concert. It’s mesmerizing to watch new drummer Basti Rupio pound a set of standing drums while Ronan pleads for humanity.

VNV Nation livestream setlist

Here’s the complete setlist from the Coronation livestream:

  1. A Million
  2. Joy
  3. Retaliate
  4. Chrome
  5. Carbon
  6. Space & Time
  7. The Great Divide
  8. Darkangel
  9. The Farthest Star
  10. Legion
  11. When is the Future?
  12. Only Satellites (live debut)
  13. Primary
  14. Control
  15. Illusion
  16. God of All
  17. Immersed
  18. Resolution
  19. Perpetual
  20. Nova
  21. Beloved
  22. Electronaut
  23. All Our Sins
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