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SYMPHONIZED

Anneke Van Giersbergen

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Anneke Van Giersbergen Symphonized album cover
4.02 | 3 ratings | 2 reviews | 33% 5 stars

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Live, released in 2018

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Feel Alive (3:34)
2. Amity (6:48)
3. Your Glorious Will Shine - Helsinki (5:23)
4. Two Souls (3:01)
5. When I Am Laid In Earth (3:47)
6. Travel (10:46)
7. Zo Lief (4:06)
8. You Will Never Change (4:19)
9. Freedom - Rio (6:13)
10. Forgotten (4:42)
11. Shores Of India (7:20)

Total Time 59:59

Line-up / Musicians

- Anneke van Giersbergen / vocals

With:
- Residentie Orkest / orchestra
- Arjan Tien / conductor

Releases information

Recorded May 18, 2018 at 013, Tilburg and May 19, 2018 at Paard, The Hague.

Artwork: Hajo Mueller

CD Inside Out Music ‎- IOMSECD 520 (2018, Europe)

2xLP + CD Inside Out Music ‎- IOMLP 520 (2018, Europe) Full album on both media

Thanks to Xymph for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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ANNEKE VAN GIERSBERGEN Symphonized ratings distribution


4.02
(3 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(33%)
33%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(67%)
67%
Good, but non-essential (0%)
0%
Collectors/fans only (0%)
0%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

ANNEKE VAN GIERSBERGEN Symphonized reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Reviewer
4 stars There has never been any doubt in my mind that Anneke is one of the most exciting singers around, and although many will point to her many years of fronting TheGathering as the main example, I would much rather point to the impact she had on Devin Townsend's 'The Retinal Circus'. When she is involved with Devin she transforms his material, so much so that when I saw him play with just his band a few years ago I was incredibly disappointed as it felt quite one-dimensional in comparison. In May 2018, Anneke (VUUR, Devin Townsend Project, TheGathering) performed two career-spanning concerts with orchestral arrangements together with Residentie Orkest The Hague, allowing her to perform some of her material in a manner which was quite different to one may expect.

Of the eleven songs on offer it is perhaps surprising that only three are from the thirteen years she spent fronting The Gathering, but she has taken the opportunity to push herself in quite different ways. The most unexpected offering is that of Henry Purcell's aria "When I am Laid In Earth" which features not only the orchestra but accompaniment from a harpsichord. Here Anneke shows she is not only a rock singer, but a professional trained soprano who can perform classical music with the best of them. Given that my mother was also a professional trained singer, it is an artform I have appreciated almost as long as I have been able to listen, and Anneke here carries it off with aplomb. Here is a singer who is at home fronting an orchestra, even performing classical arias, as she is with coping with the intense wall of sound which is the mania of Devin Townsend, and nothing phases her.

My only real issue with the album is that it should have been a double CD, as I can't believe this is a full set list and I would have loved to have heard a complete gig instead of just highlights. She hits the notes with ease, displaying control and power, with a confidence from knowing she will always shine no matter what the musical accompaniment. Yet another superb release from one of Holland's very finest.

Review by friso
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The Netherlands have delivered quite a bunch of female vocalists to the symphonic and gothic metal genres. Anneke van Giersbergen is perhaps its most celebrated veteran, with important vocal contributions to The Gathering, Vuur, Devin Townsend Project and Ayreon (and related projects). Her solo-career is perhaps less known, but this live recording justifies a change in that regard. Beforehand, let me admit I don't like any of these particular groups and I didn't own or know a single song on this live recording.

On this 2LP Van Giersbergen is accompanied not by a (rock)band, but by the Dutch Residentie Orchestra. Songs art taken from The Gathering, Vuur, The Gentle Storm, her solo output and there's a classical piece by 17th century composer H. Purcell. All rearranged for classical orchestra - and I must say I'm quite surprised how these 'guilty pleasure' styled sympho-metal pieces are turned into quite lively symphonic pieces. For me listening to these type of arrangements is nothing too engaging. It sometimes reminds me of the early Scott Walker albums (please add this artist to PA!) or the barock pop of the late sixties, such as the great Judie Collins. To keep the beat alive the strings frequently play those staccato pulsing patterns I love so much in the modern classical music of John Adams. Making the arrangement as harmonically engaging as Adams' would have done much good here; but that to much to ask for rock/symphony crossover like this.

As it stands, these are often well conceived arrangements with beautiful harmonies, but let's admit it: the main reason these recordings are as good as they are is because they make way for Giersbergen's beautiful voice! Van Giersbergen is blessed with a voice that allows for restraint without ever loosing its potency to cut through mixes like butter. She doesn't have to do particularly much to impress, just the fullness of her voice and her personal timbre will elevate even the simplest melodies. This makes for an ever relaxing, yet exciting listening experience that makes you listen to the double LP in one spin. Most of these songs have these particular moment of beautiful melancholy and I can't image why this record shouldn't be among the higher rated live album on progarchives or any other rating site. My rating is four stars, I'm glad that as an admirer of her voice I finally found an album I like.

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