Being a huge Delain fan a concert review has been on my to-do-list since I joined Lyrical Spell Magazine in August last year. Of course on 10 December 2016 there was the big 10th Anniversary Delain show with DVD recordings of the yet to be released DVD but I decided to review a ‘normal’ show to give a true description of what is to be expected from a regular Delain show like last Friday 17 March 2017 in P60 Amstelveen NL.
As a bonus their support for the evening was Aeverium, a relative newcomer in the Symphonic Metal scene although most members don’t lack any musical experience. This German Dark Melodic Metal band is touring their asses off and their efforts have resulted in a big buzz around the ‘Beauty-and-The-Beast’ female/male fronted formula which has attracted the attention of many a Symphonic Metal fan. Personally I wanted to see Aeverium because in 2014 I have met the two vocalists Aeva Maurelle (the beauty) and Marcel Römer (the beast) at a Masterclass for Metal singers in Roermond NL by the magnificent and one and only Floor Jansen (After Forever, ReVamp, Nightwish). I was really looking forward to hear and see how these two had developed their vocal and performing skills in the past three years.
P60 is the main venue in Amstelveen, a very modern and proper town near Amsterdam. It is only a 10 minutes drive away from my daytime office job in Amsterdam so I often go to P60 to see my favorite bands. At 19:00 a small group of loyal Delain fans had already gathered before the entrance and of course a few of my concert friends were already there. We passed the time chatting and taking selfies while waiting for the doors to open at 20:00. Delain has a very loyal hardcore fan base coming from various European countries. Some of these fans come to each concert and they have integrated Delain as a part of their living routine. I like too many other bands and I have a busy life so I don’t come to every Delain show in Holland but whenever they play nearby I try to. I realize we are very lucky to live in Holland where our favorite metals bands just play around the corner. So I truly admire all these international fans coming from afar to see and support their Symphonic Metal heroes. Thank you for your loyal support!
At 20:00 the doors opened and everyone rushes inside to get a spot near the stage. I position myself and my camera-gear in mid-front of the stage in the second row. I wasn’t fast enough to reach front row but I never expect people to let me stand in front of them when there is no photo pit. And besides the challenge of being a good photographer is to be able to shoot in any condition.
Aeverium comes on stage at 20:30 and the audience immediately responds positively: a good choice to tag along with Delain for four Dutch shows because Delain fans are very appreciative of Aeverium’s sound. Marcel Römer takes his job as a front man very seriously and I like his new long dreadlocks and his stage presentation a lot. This isn’t the shorthaired slightly detached and introverted yet cocky guy any more whom I met three years ago. His presentation is honest, assertive and even funny at times. I already knew he had a good voice but hearing him sing out loudly in front of hundreds of people with his steady tenor voice made the whole picture complete. Well done Marcel!
As for Aeva Maurelle, she has the looks and the voice to be a fine front woman with her tall posture and her long blonde hair. I recalled her being very timid during Floor’s Masterclass and still she hasn’t lost all of her timidity. Luckily the timidity was not be heard in her voice which is in tune, very pleasant in the soprano range and with a very good development into her chest voice. Besides having a self assured frontman like Marcel makes up for every shyness Aeva still may have on stage. So very well done too Aeva!
The other band members all have good stage presences, especially bass player Lars Dannenberg with his wild Viking looks. Guitarist Michael Karius played his solos with much ardor and keyboardist Andreas Delvos and drummer Bodo Stricker both played very steadily and convincingly.
The set was a varied mix of older (‘Harvest’ EP) and new songs. Their new full album ‘Time’ will be released on March 24th 2017. Marcel apologized upfront that since the songs were new it could sound shitty but it was far from being shitty. I couldn’t detect any flaws and the presentation again was full of confidence. I believe the success of any live performance stands or falls with the connection the artists make with their audience and Aeverium, with Marcel and Aeva as front persons, does take the effort to seek that contact. Highlight of the show was when Marcel asked the audience to kneel down for a while. I was busy shooting pics so I remained on my feet and didn’t even get the purpose of this request. But that didn’t matter because the moment most people went down, Marcel had established a connection with his audience and everyone will recall this moment and remember this show. Obviously a very clever move if you have a responsive audience like at P60.
I recommend Aeverium as a Live Symphonic Metal band because, like they state themselves on their website, ‘They cleansed this genre of its cliché-laden insignia, its pseudo-romantic pathos and its so-called rules. A new power is rising…’. Their music is fresh yet familiar at the same time, has enough power to please the Death metal fan but also enough sweetness to appease the Gothic metal fan. So try to catch them on tour. They will start touring again as of 30 March 2017 mainly in Germany after the release of their new album. Go to http://www.aeverium.com/dates.html for all tour dates.
To be continued...