|» Within Temptation 2005 02 05||
Within Temptation rolls into town and even though it was sold out it wasn't packed, but there was an anticipating crowd waiting for the band to enter the stage. It was a clean but tastefully designed stage with two giant angels standing at each side of the stage looking out over the crowd. The space was used good on stage with the drums placed stage right (a surprisingly small drumset, though), and the keyboards placed stage left, leaving the middle clean where the band could step up and move around. But more important: leaving place for a big screen where they projected backdrops of pictures flying over landscapes, snow covered mountains, erupting volcanoes and forests, all tastefully done suiting the music and further enhancing the performance.
They started with a bunch of songs from the new album The Silent Force and there was no question about the fact that Sharon den Adel was the main character and she immediately connected with audience. It sounded just as good as on album and perhaps too good, as vocals and drums were the only things that gave it a real live feeling. The other instruments gave little proof of being played live and brought no extra dimension with them live and I missed a little of that real live feel. Within Temptation played almost all of the tracks from their new album, and that was not a bad choice on forehand, considering it is with The Silent Force they have been getting the most reckoning, at least outside the metal world and in my opinion it is also their the best album. But live I found it was the older and less complex songs that worked the best.
I thought live would add an extra dimension, and not least more heaviness to the soft and sweet music from Within Temptation, but that hardly ever happened. Controlled by all of the pre-recorded orchestral parts, there was no room for improvisations. I really feel that they have songs strong enough to be performed with less of the pre-recorded stuff. Performing them in a more "peeled off" way would make them more heavy and bringing a more genuine live feeling over them. But nevertheless it got quite mighty from time to time.
The albums The Silent Force and Mother Earth represented almost all of the songs this evening and that feels a bit odd when they chose to ignore their older fans with leaving, well, almost everything of their early material out. And since it worked the best, with songs like Running Up That Hill (the Kate Bush cover), Jane Doe and The Other Half with not that much pre-recorded making their performance rawer and not least more energetic, I think that they should consider to include more older stuff in their set list.
Running Up That Hill, Mother Earth and Ice Queen where the
ones that got the best response from the audience, and it was a really
good concert even if I would have liked a more spontaneous performance
from the guys in the band. But they surely did nothing wrong and it sounded
absolutely brilliant at most times but compared with Sharon they felt
like extras and could just as well have been replaced without anyone really
noticing. Her voice is magnificent and she is definitely the one that
brings the most life in Within Temptation. I am really amazed by the range
she has and that her voice held up for the entire concert, and damn me
if her voice didn't sound even better live than on album. In the end it
was a good concert and the major part of the audience seemed to have been
very pleased, just as the band appeared to be. There were no real faults
with their performance, but what leaves me a bit unsatisfied is that I
wanted more of less, it don't have to sound just as on album live. It
should have been less of the pre-recorded orchestral parts and a bit rawer
sound to get that live feeling, in order for me to have been completely
6 Chalices of 10