Evergrey - A Night To Remember - Live 2004


Year of Release: 2005
Label: InsideOut
Catalog Number: IOMCD 203/SPV 089-40852 D
Format: CD
Total Time: 112:20:00

A Night To Remember captures Sweden's Evergrey live in their hometown of Gothenburg, at Stora Teatern. It was a special performance set up specifically for the recording of a DVD, this 2CD set being the audio version of that set. Both the CD and DVD include pieces from each of Evergrey's albums, and for the most part, dips into each in equal measure (2 from Dark Discovery, 3 from Solitude*Dominance*Tragedy, 4 each from In Search Of Truth and Recreation Day, and 5 from Inner Circle). The DVD includes a second disc with bonus features (I'll be reviewing the DVD package separately).

The band were on this night, perhaps making more certain it was so knowing they were recording the performance. The sound mix is great, the drums and bass (Jonas Ekdahl and Michael Hakansson, respectively), which are strongly heard, do not crowd out the sound of the keyboards (Rikard Zander), guitar (Thomas S. Englund, Henrik Danhage), or vocals (Englund). That is to say, the sound mix has studio clarity. But, it also has that certain audio quality one gets when playing live, a certain immediacy (and not just because the crowd is audible...). So, what you get is Evergrey barnstorming - blasting - through 20 pieces of impassioned, chugging progressive metal.

There is very little between song banter, just a bit at key points; but it's not missed either, because the band have this momentum going that pausing would just kill it. For the most part, other than announcing what song is coming up, or from what album, it's just wall to wall Evergrey and audience.

After a short intro, the band kick off with "Blinded" from Recreation Day, and not that they needed to get the audience geared up, the energy with which the band play this instantly gets the audience involved. And without missing a beat, they launch into "End Of Your Days," Englund's vocal delivery drips with emotion - though hardly soggy because of it. And the band laid it all out for "More Than Ever" - a throbbing, chugging assault ... madly wild guitar solos.

From Inner Circle, this is destined to become an Evergrey classic. This electric energy is continued for an explosive rendering of "She Speaks To The Dead." Things get comparatively calmer for the darker "Rulers Of The Mind" from In Search Of Truth. A brutal "Blackened Dawn" follows - this from their debut Dark Discovery...

We get a breather with the balladic "Waking Up Blind" - showing that this a band that can also play with subtlety, this piece featuring vocals, keys and percussion only, the vocals including those of guests Carina Englund, Tinna Karlsdotter, Andy Engberg as the chorus (they are heard elsewhere as well). This leads into a soaring version "As I Lie Here Bleeding," smoothly transitioned into via a keyboard/guitar solo interplay intro.

Disc One is capped by terrific performances "Mislead" and "Mark Of The Triangle," both from ISOT.

Disc Two begins with a trio of pieces from IC, the mostly orchestral, instrumental/soundbyte-filled "When The Walls Go Down," the swingy "Harmless Wishes" and "Essence Of Conviction." Listening to these, and then the earlier material, you can hear the band's evolution, their growing maturity. And that's saying something because "Solitude" (from S*D*T), for example, which follows, shows a lot maturity right out of the gate. I mean, Evergrey didn't and don't get stuck in one chugging groove and stay there - not that's a baseline from which their musical excursions take off from. Shadings ... that makes all the difference. What follows is powerful "Nosferatu" (also from S*D*T), then the epic title track from Recreation Day - again, and throughout, the emotion in Englund's vocals is spot on, all backed by the impressive and tight playing of the whole band. The set is closed out by "For Every Tear That Falls" DD, "Touch Of Blessing" (IC) and a rousing version of "The Masterplan" (ISOT).

Song after song, Evergrey hit the mark, each song reinforcing why this quintet are the revered band they are. This is an excellent live set - truly, it was a "Night To Remember" - a must if you are an Evergrey fan... and a great entry point if you're not, as it will fire you up to hear their whole catalog.

Also released by InsideOut Music America


Tracklisting:
Disc One: Intro (1:38) / Blinded (4:45) / End Of Your Days (4:38) / More Than Ever (5:17) / She Speaks To The Dead (4:16) / Rulers Of The Mind (5:33) / Blackened Dawn (4:04) / Waking Up Blind (4:05) / As I Lie Here Bleeding (4:42) / Mislead (7:24) / Mark Of The Triangle (6:57)

Disc Two: When The Walls Go Down (5:28) / Harmless Wishes (4:38) / Essence Of Conviction (6:07) / Solitude Within (5:47) / Nosferatu (5:41) / Recreation Day (7:24) / For Every Tear That Falls (5:22) / Touch Of Blessing (7:18) / The Masterplan (11:13)

Musicians:
Henrik Danhage - guitars, backing vocals
Tom S. Englund - vocals, guitar
Jonas Ekdahl - drums
Michael Hakansson - bass
Rikard Zander - keyboards, backing vocals

Carina Englund, Tinna Karlsdotter, Andy Engberg - live choir
Gothenburg Symphonic Orchestra - string quartet

Discography:
The Dark Discovery (1998)
Solitude*Dominance*Tragedy (1999)
In Search Of Truth (2001)
Recreation Day (2003)
Inner Circle (2004)
The Dark Discovery - Special Edition (2004)
Solitude*Dominance*Tragedy - Special Edition (2004)
A Night To Remember - Live 2004 (2005)
Monday Morning Apocalypse (2006)
Torn (2008)

A Night To Remember - Live 2004 (DVD) (2005)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin SE

Added: January 20th 2006
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Score:
Artist website: www.evergrey.net
Hits: 937
Language: english

  

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