with Andromeda and Time Curve Symphony,
Saturday 16th February 2002, Club Dunois, Paris, France
By Charlie Farrell
French mag Rock Hard (sister publication of the German magazine with the
same name) had organised two 'showcases' for these promising and fairly
unknown acts (in France at least). The venues chosen - Club Dunois in
Paris and the Rail Theatre in Lyon are not particularly large, but they
offered the advantage of allowing the French public to see the acts at
a low price. With a local French band opening up the show as well, there
were few who could complain that 3 bands for 12Euros, was anything other
than excellent value for money.
In Paris, the local band chosen was Time Curve Symphony.
Unfortunately such was the crush of people trying to get into the hall
via the single, rather small door, that I was forced to listen to their
set from the corridor outside and it was very difficult for me to offer
an opinion on their performance.
After a short break and the chance to hear tracks from various upcoming
new releases it was the chance for
Andromeda to take to the stage. Right from the very opening chords I was
blown away with their sound and in particular with the vocal harmonies offered
by the new vocalist, David Fremberg and the keyboard player Martin Hedin.
Whilst I enjoyed their debut disk,
Extension of The Wish, at its release, early in 2001, I had not listened
to the disk in some time. From the beginning of the powerful The Words
Unspoken, the swirling synths and powerful riffs had me hooked.
This was swiftly followed by In The Deepest of Waters, another
excellent track, before the band introduced the title track of their
upcoming disk 2 is 1. Slightly slower in pace and less instrumentally
showy than their other tunes, it nevertheless demonstrated a progression in
the bands style. A souped-up Arch Angel led into what appeared to be
an extended version of the album's title-track Extension of the Wish,
which featured a wonderful instrumental section during which the musicianship
of Johan Reinholdz and Martin Hedin really shone. Not content with that,
the band then followed up with the instrumental number Chameleon Carnival
- a track which they had omitted from earlier performances.
The set was closed out with Eclipse - a track from the expanded
edition of Extension of The Wish and a storming version of Star
Shooter Supreme. If anyone doubted that these guys could reproduce
the fantastic musicianship found on their album, then this performance
would have blown those doubts away. A powerful, solid performance from
a very impressive bunch of musicians. Can't wait for the new album.
After an extensive break, extended by 10 to 15 mins due to some
equipment problems, Evergrey took
to the stage to big cheers. Their most recent album
Search of Truth was very well received by both Press and Public
in France and this was the first opportunity for a French audience
to experience a full headlining show by the band. They launched their
attack with The Encounter. An excellent tune from the In
Search of Truth album - the wonderfully emotive line "They're
coming" - ('They' being the Alien visitors, which the concept
for the disk is based around) sending a collective chill down the
backs of the audience. "We're Evergrey from Sweden"
announced vocalist Tom Englund in introducing Rulers of the
Mind, from the same CD, to a warm response from the crowd.
However the gremlins which had delayed the start of the set
continued to dog Tom and his guitar throughout both these numbers
and the subsequent track She Speaks To The Dead from
their earlier disk Solitude, Dominance, Tragedy. As the number
finished, he cursed the Japanese equipment manufacturer and the
technicians before the launching into Watching the Skies
with extra aggression - clearly not a happy guy. To my ears the
sound was fine, the guitars of Tom and Henrik Danhage blending
with Michael Håkansson thumping bass and Patrick Carlsson's driving
drums producing the gothic metal sound for which the band
is well known. Chris Rehn's keyboards were excellent, adding a
progressive edge to the bands already powerful sound.
They continued to mix old and new tracks and with Tom's
guitar woes seemingly coming to an end, following a change of guitar,
they really delivered a great show. The unity between the two
guitarists and the bassist was clear to see during the shows of
synchronized headbanging and the audience did its best to
respond in a similar way.
In seemingly no time at all it was time for the encores with
members of the audience screaming out song titles - indicating
a knowledge of the band's full discography. They played both
Solitude Within and my personal favourite Nosferatu
before taking a further break off stage. When they returned for a final time,
the crowd were unanimous in their choice of song - it had to be
The Masterplan, the anthemic opening number from In
Search of Truth and the band gave it every last drop of energy
they had, absolutely wonderful!
With the clock edging towards midnight and conscious of their
intention to perform a signing session with their fans, the set
ended there and with it an excellent evening's entertainment.
Watching the Skies, Mark of the Triangle and
The Masterplan were personal highlights and it cannot be
long before the band is headlining on a more extensive tour.
The Words Unspoken
In The Deepest of Waters
2 is 1 (new)
Extension of the Wish
Star Shooter Supreme
Rulers of the Mind
She Speaks To The Dead
Watching the Skies
When The River Calls
Mark of the Triangle
State of Paralysis