Evergrey – Many highlights in Baroeg, Rotterdam
foto: Pauline van der Kraats
One of the last concerts of the year, turned out to be the most challenging one. Evergrey from Sweden are acquainted with snow, but in Rotterdam the logistics works differently. They can laugh about it, but for the audience it is hard; it takes four hours to get to the venue. Without snow only one hour would be enough. Nevertheless the ones who came can be very satisfied. It is a cosy atmosphere and most of all Evergrey will show a lot of quality tonight!
Opener of the evening is also a Swedish band, but they introduce themselves as female fronted rock instead of the progressive headliner. One Without is a young band with potential. They give you a nice mixture between Linkin Park, Evanescene and Arch Enemy, to name a few.
Their sound is very heavy and the wall of guitars and drums are sometimes a bit too loud. Maybe it is a part of their music, but I prefer a better balance between guitars, bass and drums. Luckily Catrin is strong enough to grab the attention for a while. The feedback from the audience is fine, when you conclude that nobody has their debut album or ever heard of them.
Vocalist Catrin Feymark is a bit shy in the beginning, but after a few minutes she shows a lot of adrenaline on stage. She needs more experience to impress the audience a bit more, but her voice is very clear and dynamic. It is hard to believe such a fragile lady can produce such a heavy sound! The well known Gothenburg sound is also an important element in their songs. Catrin easily switches from a catchy pop sound to an aggressive grunt.
‘ Your Game’ is groovy, with heavy guitars from Joonas Niskanen, startling developing into a catchy melodic song, without loosing their energy. Good song writing and it is a nice first impression of their debut album ‘ Thoughts Of A Secluded Mind.’ The album is mastered by Dragan Tanakovic (In Flames, Evergrey), so the missing link is found.‘Open Wound’ is a new song that bound all the energy and heavy sound. It would be a nice to see them on a festival like Graspop or Lowlands.
More information on their website: http://www.onewithout.com/
Evergrey is on the road for a short tour, and two of the five shows are in The Netherlands and the question is if we will get a glimpse of the new album ‘Glorious Collision’ scheduled of 28th February on SPV/Steamhammer. Many fans are assembled in the front. It is very special to see them on such a small stage. The prog-metal was more famous in the ’90 and 2000, but still very well known over the years.
The intro ‘ When The Walls Go Down’ from ‘ The Inner Circle’ album, instantly changes the atmosphere and fills the air with excitement; people start to scream and my heart beats faster. Suddenly the Swedish musicians are there, just a few centimetres away, blowing everyone away with their energy.
ITonight has a perfect setlist with ‘Recreation Day’ as opener. The sound is too loud in all the ways you can imagine, but Tom S. Englund smoothly guides the crowd through the song with his natural charisma and talented voice.
‘Obidience’ shows all the raw, intense emotions. It is almost unbelievable how easy it looks from the side of the audience: Tom bend over the microphone, simply standing there without wasting energy or doing many efforts (not running around or dramatic faces). Simply natural and convincing.
He has a unique talent and he knows it. The new formation works very well, with bass player Johan Niemann on his left. On the right side guitarist Marcus Jidell (Royal Hunt) and in the back hidden behind his drumkit the youngest one Hannes van Dahl.
‘We wanted to visited a sauna place today, but after a walk of three hours we never got there’ says Tom indifferent during a little break, before full speed continue with ‘As I Lie Here Bleeding’ with a star role for Rikard Zander on keyboards and an impressive guitar solo by Marcus. Also the ensemble of voices is an ultimate energy explosion. Evergrey delivers quality and on top of that inspiration, what comes with intense emotions. The progressive sound means that all the musicians are very capable of complex melodies, but still it is easy to follow with catchy melodies and uptempo riffs. Over the years they still have a very own sound and that is their strength.
Every song is a new peak, accumulate to a energetic climax. We are only halfway the set with many more hits to come. ‘Words Mean Nohting’ gets a lot of response from the fans and there is a lot of interaction between all the members. It is such a relief to be an eyewitness of their passion and happiness, after ten years I followed them there is still a strong devotion.
Above that they are talented musicians. The real fan can analyse some little details and improvisation of the members. Sad enough the sound is disturbing more and more, halfway the set the solo of Rikard, the piano is hard to hear and the voice of Tom is totally gone, what’s left is the dominate drum and heavy bass.
‘I’m Sorry’ is a ballade where the fragile voice of Tom – with his eyes closed- is accompanied by Rikard Zander. It is a peaceful and serene moment of the show. I wonder if Tom isn’t too relaxed, because I somehow miss the deeper emotion. The energy returns on the ‘Masterplan’ an uptempo version where drummer Hannes shows his talent, sometimes a bit too much with his dominated sound.
After ‘Broken Wings’ and ‘ Touch Of Blessing’ it is time to say goodbye from this appealing Swedish band, they gain ‘ground’ and convince the fans in Rotterdam. Without any doubt Evergrey is still standing strong, and no wonder they belong on the top of the prog-metal scene. In March they return as support act of Kamelot.
Myspace Evergrey: http://www.myspace.com/officialevergrey