Anneke van Giersbergen lives in the South East of the Netherlands, and she was well known for being frontwoman from The Gathering. That may seem only ten years back, but it’s been more than twenty-five since she stepped into this metal band. In 2007 she started with solo projects and bands like Devin Townsend Project and The Gentle Storm. In 2016 she started her own band called VUUR.
In May (2018) she gave, in collaboration with the Residentie Orchestra, two concerts with which she looked back on her career so far.
Anneke’s voice is clear and blends fantastically with the music in ‘Feel Alive‘. You hear that this is a complete orchestra, with a good section of strings and wind instruments. The sound is beautifully clear and nicely balanced over the headphones/speakers. Anneke spontaneously shouts:
“The Hague, let’s hear”.
This is the Anneke we know, even though the performance of the music may be different than we are used to. Because she has mainly made her name as a metal singer. For those who don’t know yet: Anneke can do much more than ‘just’ metal.
Of course, a song from VUUR can’t be left out. The intro of ‘Your Glorious Light Will Shine‘ (from the debut album ‘In this moment we are free‘) is just as modest as the original. The turn that would give a metal twist for VUUR, is beautifully built up by the orchestra here. Anneke’s voice is actually even sounding better here. The twists in the music between grotesque / bombastic and small plays are grandiose.
During ‘Two Souls‘ Anneke accompanies herself on acoustic guitar. This mixes perfectly with Anneke’s clear voice and the sober strings. Anneke shows that she not only can sing full power, but also controls the subdued singing into the finesse. She knows how to move me with her voice and the few notes she plays on her guitar.
The mysterious start of ‘Travel‘ is fascinating and surprising. These proggy elements go smoothly over to strings. The twists and turns in music and singing are sublime. Vocal and extensive instrumental pieces alternate. Anneke perfectly doses her voice again. This is music to enjoy intensely. Here too there is a beautiful build-up towards the end.
‘So sweet‘ has never been released on CD. It is nice to hear Anneke sing in Dutch, with her Brabant soft g. The beautiful lyrics are about her son growing up. Recognizable for every parent. The whole is a bit sweet, but it is sung right from the heart, that makes it so special.
Also due to the percussion, ‘You Will Never Change‘ has a bit more tempo than the previous songs. Anneke sings quite powerful and this fits in with the music. The small sung and played piece is unexpected, but amazing.
The intro of ‘Shores of India‘ is so recognizable. Again the small sung and high sung parts are super. The audience claps on the rhythm during the slower played part. This version, with the Residentie Orchestra, is phenomenal, which also applies to the build-up to the end. And that’s how this CD ends in a great way.
The applause after every song is well deserved, but it sometimes takes a bit too long. The applause after ‘Forgotten‘ lasts more than a minute. Completely right, but if you listen to the CD often, this ‘interruption’ will get boring. Anneke is a genius, she lets hear that again with ‘Symphonized‘.
90/100 Inside Out Music
Website: Anneke van Giersbergen
Facebook: Anneke van Giersbergen
01 – Feel Alive (03:34)
02 – Amity (Lorrainville) (06:48)
03 – Your Glorious Light Will Shine – Helsinki (VUUR) (05:22)
04 – Two Souls (The Gathering) (03:01)
05 – When I Am laid In Earth (aria door Henry Purcell) (03:47)
06 – Travel (The Gathering) (10:46)
07 – Zo Lief (nooit uitgebracht) (04:05)
08 – You Will Never Change (04:18)
09 – Freedom – Rio ( VUUR) (06:13)
10 – Forgotten (The Gathering)
11 – Shores Of India (The Gentle Storm) (07:20)