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Anneke Van Giersbergen - Agua de Annique: Air CD (album) cover


Anneke Van Giersbergen


Prog Related

3.99 | 40 ratings

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4 stars The news that Anneke Van Giersbergen would leave The Gathering didn't surprise nor disappointed me much. The previous two Gathering albums had only shown their diminishing creative flows.

It had also seemed to me as if the vocals had become something of an afterthought. Even though Anneke was given centre stage, it sounded as if she had to write her vocal melodies on top of already pre-recorded music. It's something that isn't easy to pull off and it often led to contrived or repetitious vocals. No, vocal lines are best written strumming away on a guitar or sitting at the piano. And that's exactly how this album was approached. Of course it makes for a singer songwriter album, rather then having anything to do with prog or rock. All elements that made the Gathering progressive are stripped away.

Anyway, what Agua The Anique brings is short melancholic rock songs and ballads, catchy verse chorus tunes with the most basic of rock arrangements: drums, bass and one guitar. The music is written around the gripping vocal melodies and that approach produced a set of spontaneously flowing songs. So let's just take this at face value; this is a touching collection of songs that sounds like Anneke doing Kate Bush or Tori Amos in a rocky mood. I think it won't disappoint admirers of the Gathering, nor fans of melancholic rock such as Anathema, Antimatter or even Radiohead.

Even though there is a slight lull after the stunning opening tracks, the album picks up its momentum again from track 6 onwards. Most songs here are too good to be on such an obscure album. It's a shame really. This music is delightful, without pretension, sincere and catchy. This should be loved by the masses instead of just me and two other devotees.

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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