Riverside & Jolly & Dianoya
Friday, 22nd March 2013
Patronaat, Haarlem, the Netherlands
The Patronaat is the closest venue for me to attend a concert.
For some reason I have not been there in a long time,
a reason I can give is that the progressive rock bands usually play at De Boerderij in Zoetermeer.
I still remember seeing Fish and Anathema at the Patronaat so I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that Riverside
chose Haarlem for the start of three concert days in the Netherlands.
I was even more pleasantly surprised to see that Jolly was going to support them on this tour.
With a big smile freezing to my face I was walking to the bus stop and I was off to Haarlem.
The doors opened very early and apparently it was a three band bill tonight.
A Polish band called Dianoyo was going to open before Jolly.
Dianoya was formed somewhere in 2008 and in 2010 they released an album called Obscurity Divine.
Their style is described as progressive grunge rock.
I tried to step in open minded but in the back of my mind I cannot keep the thought out of my head that
usually these small opening acts are not really interesting.
At first I thought they were an instrumental group because only a drummer, a guitar player and a bass player entered the stage.
During the first five minutes they played solid rock with many changes in rhythm and certainly not playing just the standard rock themes.
Drummer Dawid Artyszuk nicely controlled the time changes, not missing any but also not really pushing any boundaries.
Bass player Bartosz Turkowski calmly played his parts.
Guitar player Jan Niedzielski stretched himself a bit more and gave the music just a little bit more than a standard rock band.
No flying solos, if there were any solos at all, but a heavy groove with enough technical difficulties to impress the audience in Haarlem.
After the first song vocalist Filip Zielinski entered the stage, so it was not going to be a completely instrumental opening part.
His vocals were pretty good and he also appeared to be a very pleasant frontman.
The songs indeed were grungy, the time changes made it progressive enough for the audience to like this opening act.
When they started only a few people were present but at the end of the half hour show it was pretty crowded and the people present enjoyed Dianoya.
Jolly was branded a support act but many people in the audience were anxious to see this band.
Their previous release The Audio Guide To Happiness Part I surprised me and I really wanted to see this band live.
The recent release of The Audio Guide To Happiness Part II was an extra reason for me to go see them.
The changing of the gear was done very rapidly so the wait was not that long.
The entered the stage and I braced myself because from The Audio Guide To Happiness Part I I know Jolly can really kick off and hit you
in the face with a heavy riff from out of nowhere.
Surprisingly they started of with the mellow song Storytime.
I immediately noticed the sound was perfect. And then I remembered that the sound at Patronaat is always very good.
The volume was perfect and I could distinguish all instruments and they were mixed in a perfect balance.
Jolly is a band that uses humour in their music without becoming clownish.
Keyboard player Joe Reilly wore a green/yellow ridiculous pair of glasses,
guitar player/singer Anadale wore a big hat with a feather attached and he whore a lot of jewellery and
bass player Anthony Rondinone, with his small moustache, looked like he stepped out of a black and white movie.
Drummer Louis Abramson is the only one who looked normal with his jeans and his black T-shirt.
A Jolly band with a jolly appearance.
Then it was time for a song from the new album The Audio Guide To Happiness Part II.
A bit unexpected to me but they only played two songs from the new album.
The first one was Firewell,
a very heavy song with many changes, just like Dianoya the progressive element from Jolly is the complex time changes but Jolly
really take it to a new level. No Dream Theater copycat but complexity in the rhythm is certainly a feature, a joy for all fans of progressive music.
Jolly has a sound of it's own and the boys earned a place of their own in the progressive rock genre.
Now they still are a support band and to become main attraction they need to step up just a bit and I sure hope they can manage that.
They are on tour promoting their part II album but the leading role in this concert was the part I album.
Strange or not, the audience did not seem to care.
At some point in the show drummer Louis Abramson stepped up towards the microphone.
I thought he was going to introduce the band but he made a speech about the fact that he
received a lot of help and heart warming messages from all over the world when he lost his house in hurricane Sandy that hit New York.
Not only his house but also the practicing studio for Jolly was destroyed.
A well meant applause for this serious statement from this jolly band.
So the fact that most songs were from Part I was no big thing.
Many people did not have the part II album yet so playing these older songs that are more familiar could be a good choice.
Second song played from the Part II album was Where Everything's Perfect,
it is not a really heavy song, a more poppy song with some nice keyboard melodies.
After that song it was all heavy stuff.
Dust Nation Bleak from the new album is a very heavy complex song.
At that point I was not familiar with the song but I blew me away.
Every time I play the album in my car and this song is playing then the volume goes up a notch.
The Audio Guide To Happiness Part I has two catchy songs that can really get a crowd going.
Joy and The Pattern are songs that guarantee some response.
In between those two songs they played a song that was hard to place for me, it turned out that We Had An Agreement is from their debut album.
Nice but the newer songs from Jolly I like a lot more.
Oh boy this was some performance.
I did not fond anyone saying this concert was bad, all reaction were positive.
Afterwards I got the new album and have been playing it ever since.
Where Everything's Perfect
Dust Nation Bleak
We Had An Agreement
Again the gear change was very quick.
Riverside could begin five minutes earlier but they had to wait until the intro tape was completely finished.
As expected they started with New Generation Slave from the new album Shrine Of New Generation Slaves.
Mariusz Duda was at the center of the stage and all the lights pointed were pointed at him.
It was a bit more mellow than the album version, the electric guitar had to wait a bit, but when they turned on the heavy switch
it was really tight, Riverside is a well-oiled machine.
For the main act they turned the volume up a notch so the perfect sound from Jolly was not met but
it was still very good. No earplugs for me this time, not as perfect as the Jolly sound but good enough.
First time I saw Riverside was many, many years ago, they were still a support act in those days.
Must say that half of the crowd left when Riverside were finished and did not wait for the main attraction.
They amazed me with their sound but they were rather boring to look at.
I was sure anxious to see if Riverside had improved on that part.
Mariusz Duda really looked like he was sucked up in the ambiance of the music.
That is still the case but this evening in the Patronaat he showed himself a better entertainer.
Still no super frontman but he took more effort in building a connection with the audience in which he succeeded.
The part where he read some Dutch words from a paper was hilarious.
Keyboard player Michal Lapaj changed from a shy man focussing on his keyboard to a very friendly appearance.
Smiling a lot and also connecting with the people in front of him while still playing his keyboards parts perfectly.
Guitar player Piotr Grudzinski remained the same over time.
He still has a very good control over his instrument, the music of Riverside is technically not over the top
but playing it like he does demands a great instrument control and he does that with ease.
So much ease that he should smile some time but absolutely no emotion what so ever for the whole evening.
Drummer Piotr Kozieradzki is a small man behind a big drum kit.
When he left his drum kitt he never really looked into the crowd, nor did Piotr Grudzinski.
They should do that, they have got the best jobs in the world, entertaining people with music, so they should smile and show they like it.
Back to the music, the new album showed a turn in music style for Riverside.
It is still very recognizable Riverside but they took a new path, more emotions and no more heavy vocals.
I kind of lost track of them after Second Life Syndrome, that was my favourite up until the release of the new album.
They really won me back with Shrine Of New Generation Slaves, I doubt if any other album will top that one for 2013.
They played six songs from the new album and five from their earlier works.
Must say I did not expect that three of those songs would come from Anno Domini High Definition.
The only song older than ADHD was Conceiving You from the Second Life Syndrome album.
Ah well, you can always debate about the setlist.
I have the new album for a while now and could not wait to hear the songs live.
It is an album that needs time to grow on you so I felt it was good I already had the album for a while.
After the opener came The Depth of Self-Delusion, starting out with the typical Riverside bass sound and then
slowly building up, this is my favourite composition from the new album.
The heavier songs from ADHA turned out to be a good contrast with the new songs.
Especially Driven To Destruction was a real crowd pleaser.
Again the bass playing from Marius Duda at the start is enough to get everybody cheering.
The first encore Left Out did not do it for me but the second encore was perfect.
First Conceiving You and than Celebrity Touch, the best rocking song from Shrine Of New Generation Slaves.
What a great concert. Jolly really rocked the place and I thought Riverside would have trouble topping that but they sure did that.
Do not know if it was completely sold out, tickets were still available when I entered, but it sure was packed.
The new album and this concert show Riverside is still going strong.
New Generation Slave
The Depth Of Self-Delusion
Feel Like Falling
Driven To Destruction
Living In The Past
We Got Used To Us
Riverside Official Website
DPRP's Review of Riverside's "Shrine Of New Generation Slaves"
Jolly Official Website
DPRP's Review of Jolly's "The Audio Guide To Happiness (Part Two)"
Dianoya Official Website