Rammstein is a band committed to blunt force. You could hear it and feel it on the final night of the German act’s long-delayed U.S. stadium tour, erupting at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Saturday (Sept. 24) with the heaviest guitars and industrial beats, abrasive electronics and literal fireballs. Rammstein meant to leave a mark and they did, with thousands of fans pummeled into noisy ecstasy and a sky tinged with smoke and fire.

The concert unfolded on a stage built into a towering dystopian cityscape right out of Fritz Lang’s silent classic Metropolis, which blended easily with the old Olympic stadium’s nearly 100-year-old structure. It was all suited to a band with a weakness for big gestures, as Rammstein delivered more than two hours of music and noise from the Neue Deutsche Härte tradition, colliding metal and techno into something distinctly their own: loud and melodic, bleak and often hilarious.

It was their second and final show in L.A. (to be followed by Mexico City and a return run in Europe). Two nights in the city’s oldest stadium is a startling accomplishment for a mostly German-language act, let alone a North American tour, where English is usually a given in rock for the masses. But Rammstein’s appeal is special and intense, crossing all borders like an invading army. Language is no barrier to their sound and raw spectacle.

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