Hauptbahnhof Wien, 2012
In 2009 five musicians from five different bands went on a 11-day train journey through Austria. Without money they played improvised shows wherever they were invited: In a treehouse, in a prison, in trains and rural taverns. The Austro-American supergroup Nowhere Train consists of Ian Fisher, Jakob M. Kubizek (Love & Fist), Stephan Stanzel (A Life, A Song, A Cigarette), Frank Lebel (Play The Tracks Of), Stefan Deisenberger (Naked Lunch) and the new members Ryan Carpenter and Martin Mittlerstieler. Together they just released their debut album “Station”. And where else to shoot a session with Nowhere Train than in … a station! We meet the seven guys at 6 a.m. on a chilly November morning at the construction site of the new main railway station in Vienna. Before construction work starts and while the sun slowly appears on the horizon we get our safety vests and boots, walk through what is to become the main hall and set up on one of the platforms. Nowhere Train head into an energetic version of “Ashes”, the opener of their album, which certainly gets everybody in the right spirit for this early morning adventure. We record a second song a bit further back on the platform: The quiet and beautifully fragile “To All My Demons”. Slowly, the construction workers take over the station, some of them curiously peeking at the unexpected musical guests. They certainly have the right soundtrack for the working day in their ears now!
Vienna never had a main train station. Traditionally trains arrive at three different terminal stations depending if they come from the west, north or south and east. Plans to change this rather inefficient structure and build one central station were already discussed in the 19th century, but the elevated costs of such a project prevented its realisation up until now. In 2007 works on the 850-million Euro investment started, and the new Hauptbahnhof will be partially in service from December 9th, 2012. It will take until 2015, though, until construction work will be finished. The station – designed by Austrian architects Hotz/Hoffmann with a characteristic irregular roof – will not only serve as a transport hub, but also include a shopping center and office spaces. In the adjacent area to the south of the station a completely new neighbourhood – Sonnwendviertel – with around 5.000 apartments, more office spaces and a sizeable park will be erected.