Tag Archives: Black Symphony DVD

Black Symphony DVD :: Within Temptation :: Feature Review part 2

23 Jan

wt_ahoy_george_400px1The introduction to Our Solemn Hour is met with a huge cheer from the audience, and then the song explodes and so does the entire arena. Sharon in her shoulder-feathers leads proceedings and the whole orchestra and choir are in full flight again. Next the rousing The Other Half Of Me and another special guest, the lively George Oosthoek, with all the necessary growls and menace. Another wonderfully theatrical moment, which the audience loved.

Next, for Frozen, the band took centre stage again to rock out a little, followed by the ethereal The Promise that was given extra lift by the whole majesty of the venue. Truly a thrilling version, with Sharon willing the crowd to enjoy. The anthem that is Angels brought both the enormous angels on stage and the audience to full voice. Spectacular, and more tears for the beauty of the song and the overwhelming experience.

wt_promo_blue_400pxThe flute and choir lead you in and then suddenly the stage and musicians explode into Mother Earth – another crowd-pleasing anthem performed with gusto. The male choir was, of course, thrilling in the live setting, so another classic performance. The Truth Beneath The Rose followed, again emphasising the majesty and range of WT music and Sharon’s voice, plus the magic of the live performance with the orchestra. Truly a perfect example of the talents of all the musicians and their songwriting, and a fitting climax.

Except for the thunderous encores of Deceiver of Fools with another exquisite costume change for Sharon. Next up is All I Need with ballet backdrop and is a much-appreciated sing-along by the audience. Sharon’s vocals again travel a wide range and leave this listener in awe.

So to the grand final, Ice Queen, with the audience, again, singing as one! Black Symphony is easily one of the best albums of any year as it captures so much power, majesty and sheer excellence in metal music – whether you call it gothic metal or symphonic metal or symphonic rock. WT rules!!

wt_black_symphony_dvd_cover_200pxIf you ever need to show an example of female-fronted metal with a commanding singer, just show anyone a track from this DVD. They could not fail to be impressed. Mention must be made of the band, of course, and they are so tight throughout that it seemed churlish to single anyone out. The rhythm section held everything, including the orchestra, together: Stephen van Haestregt on drums and Jeroen van Veen on bass guitar. Martijn Spierenburg (keyboards), Ruud Adrianus Jolie (electric and acoustic guitars) and Robert Westerholt (electric guitars) were precise, and all the guitarists supported Sharon den Adel on stage with their energy and visual emphasis.

Details: The concert features the band accompanied by The Metropole Orchestra and the Pa’dam Choir. It was filmed by 14 HD cameras on February 7, 2008 at the Ahoy Arena in Rotterdam.

Black Symphony DVD :: Within Temptation :: Feature Review part 1

23 Jan

The Ahoy Arena is one of the premier concert venues in Europe, with fantastic acoustics and wonderful transport efficiency. It is a pleasure to travel to the venue in a way that is so ‘right’ it is astounding that other venues are so bad. This excellent access puts you in a good mood before a concert starts.

Next, of course, is the performance. The Ahoy has hosted everyone from Tina Turner and Janet Jackson, right through the past 15 pop years, and with many classical triumphs as well. When I heard Within Temptation would be recording there, and with a symphony orchestra – wow!!

wt_ahoy_purp_500pxFor the purposes of this review I have ordered the concert in the same sequence as the superb Black Symphony DVD – which cannot be recommended highly enough.

So the Overture is just amazing – orchestra and massed choir in the perfect acoustic setting. Then the band arrives and the sound is awesome. Have never heard Sharon sound so good on Jillian (I’d Give My Heart) and, of course, looking magnificent. The power and majesty continue on The Howling with the orchestra letting rip – so to speak. If anyone doubts the power of Sharon’s vocals, just listen to her in front of that song.

wt_ahoy_sharon_purp_225pxOne of my favourite songs, Stand My Ground, comes next and so the tears come too – of joy and wonder. We’re only three songs in and the concert is already a classic. The drums throb next, providing that rumbling backdrop to The Cross, followed by Sharon’s effortless range across husky to pure.

Next is What Have You Done with special guest Keith Caputo, one of WT’s excellent anthems and the crowd cannot help themselves with singing and cheering. It’s like a choir of 10,000 voices. Then it was back to Sharon’s power on Hand of Sorrow, the clarity and range of her mezzo-soprano so evident on this and the following The Heart of Everything. Here I must just mention, also, the huge video screens behind the stage and the very appropriate imagery for each song.

A costume change and a huge cheer for Forgiven, which was nothing short of beautiful. And Sharon too. The piano and orchestra were in perfect harmony and, again, most of the audience were singing the lyrics the whole way through.

Next is another skillful duet, this with Anneke van Giersbergen on Somewhere and its magical interweaving of the two voices. The Swan Song and Memories return to the more mellow style, with the boys all sitting stage front on their instruments.

Part 2 follows …

Within Temptation – Black Symphony DVD

2 Aug

September 22 is going to be a birthday for lots of fans of Within Temptation when the DVD of their Black Symphony concert is released :: and i could be one of the first in the queue.

with a trailer like Our Solemn Hour and the massed orchestra and choir lending considerable power to proceedings, this could be one of the picks for top 10 of the year :: sounds like all the best elements of WT have combined to create a masterpiece.

hope you love it too