2000 – Sonar Festival

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At Sonar Festival, Barcelona

17th June 2000 – Sonar Festival – Barcelona, Spain

Set List

  1. Everything Keeps Dissolving
  2. Amethyst Deceivers (Version 1)
  3. Queens of the Circulating Library
  4. (Blue) Chasms
  5. The Universe is a Haunted House
  6. Elves


“Time Machines from the Heart of Darkness” phase. “Chasms” became retitled as “Blue Chasms,” and this particular show has Coil expanding their setlist to include the then recently released “Amethyst Deceivers” from the Autumn Equinox EP (September 1998), although in dramatically different form, and one song from the abandoned Backwards sessions, “Elves.”

Feeling: Fluffy

Debut performances of “Amethyst Deceivers (Version 1),” final performances of “Everything Keeps Dissolving,” “Queens of the Circulating Library,” and “(Blue) Chasms,” only performances of “The Universe is a Haunted House” (other songs are often labeled by this name, but I’ll refrain from this in this document) and “Elves”.

As “Everything Keeps Dissolving” begins, John says, “Thank you for coming. We’re Coil.” After the song, the band takes off their suits’ hoodies.

John doesn’t sing on “Amethyst Deceivers” until near the end of the song, and even then, his vocals can barely be heard, not to mention his delivery is still relatively nascent and minimal.

During “(Blue) Chasms” John and Thighpaulsandra pantomime some sort of ritual as John lies down. They also reflect mirrors at the audience and wave wands around.

Halfway through “Elves” a random woman garbed in a tight jumpsuit revealed herself to the stage and started dancing to the song. Thighpaulsandra later said that none of them knew who she was or where she came from, and yet Jon Whitney insists that Peter hired her and the band knew her.

“The Barcelona Aural Backdrop”

John Balance reportedly gave the CDr containing the backing audio track mixdowns Coil used to a fan after the show. These tracks eventually surfaced on a bootleg called The Barcelona Aural Backdrop and are only available through this means – Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson did not officially release them on the Coil Reconstruction Kit.


John Balance
Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson
Simon Norris (Ossian Brown)
William Breeze* – viola
Unknown female dancer – dancing on “Elves”

*This was the only time that William Breeze played live with Coil.

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Ticket Stubs

Please email us on info@live-coil-archive.com if you have any ticket stubs from this event.


Sonar 2000
Music, Creativity & Technology




Attendee Recollections

Balance said of the show: “We had a fantastic time. Wonderful city with gorgeous and great spirited people. we met up wih V/VM people, Matmos, La Bradford. Larry Thrasher and Bryin Dall of Thee Majesty (avoided GPO himself), Russell Haswell, Autechre, Vicki from People Like Us, hung out with Radiohead and Marc Almond. MET STOCKHAUSEN after his performance of Hymnen which started the Festival off. Bill asked if he would be an honourary member of COIL and he agreed. We’d like to thank all the great people who put so much effort into it. And to the people who came to see us from all over the USA and Europe. Sorry about the near riots to get into the COIL gig. It was massively overwhelmed, beseiged is more the word I’m looking for.”

Jon Whitney, to paraphrase, remembers he stood next to a guy wearing a Phish t-shirt who was clearly tripping while recording this show. According to him, at the beginning of the recording, you can hear the guy say, “How long do you think this is gonna last?” possibly referring to either the show or the drugs. This guy had a camera, and at one point sat down in the middle of the show and just haphazardly taped the ceiling and backdrop behind the band. I asked Jon if maybe this could have occurred during the previous show at Royal Festival Hall, since the same thing happened there and he also attended that show, but he maintains this occurred at Barcelona. Jon also states that none of the recordings, not even his own, do the power of the bass present at the show any justice whatsoever.

Known Recordings

Tapes owners/taper:

AUD #1 – Jon Whitney
One of the AMTs used in the EDIT – Fabijan Rainer

Concert Recording Downloads

AUD #1 – Officially released as Disc B of Live One [Discogs link].
AMT #1 – Used on Colour Sound Oblivion DVD #2. Audio recording download link (archive.org).
Aural BackdropRecording download link (archive.org).