The Gathering - In Motion review
Live At Dynamo Open Air:
03. Fear The Sea
05. In Motion # 2
07. Strange Machines
Additional Video Clips:
09. Liberty Bell
Live In Katowice:
11. The May Song
12. New Moon, Different Day
13. Mandylion / Sand & Mercury
15. Strange Machines
What do we call a live release that the band doesn't recognize as official? A bootleg? And if it's released by the label? Official bootleg! At least a bootleg is what The Gathering prefer this DVD to be called. This particular collection of live tracks was released at the end of October in 2002 without any approval or involvement of the band. Century Media just figured it was time to make some money out of the video footage that was already a couple of years old. Knowing that the band loves what they do and do it to the highest quality, this release doesn't meet any possible expectations you might have.
So, what we actually have here is a DVD consisting of incomplete performances at Dynamo Open Air festival in 1996 and the Katowice (although the cover says Krakow) show in Poland in 1997, plus two video clips. When I started playing the DVD, it kicked off without any introduction with the Dynamo fest. I wouldn't say I don't enjoy seeing bands open air in bright daylight but it is certainly not something I'd die for to see on the video. It's not bad but it just doesn't create the atmosphere. The show itself seemed to be more or less a good one, the band enjoying themselves and playing quite passionately. It's actually great to see Anneke jumping around in delight during the instrumental parts. The camera work is OK too, although I'd have liked to see less of the crowd. I don't know if it's enjoyable to be crowd surfing or stage diving but the sight from stage is not something I like. Especially seeing tens of people riding there makes you think it looks like a pool of ignorant chaos instead of fans.
As is normal for a festival the set isn't long. Most songs that were performed were taken from the "Mandylion" album, which at the time was their latest. Additionally "Adrenaline" was performed, taken from the "Adrenaline / Leaves" EP. As far as I know only one song was left out from the DVD - "Stonegarden" from the "Always..." album. This is a real shame as I would have loved to see that one performed with Anneke.
Next on the DVD come two video clips, which is annoying. Century Media could at least have left those as a bonus or something, not something that's in between the two shows, like a commercial. I hadn't seen "Leaves" before and it was quite interesting to view it. Though it is nothing extremely special, I quite like it. "Liberty Bell" I had seen earlier and this one looks a lot more like a video for some pop band, being shiny and stuff. But still I wouldn't say I don't like it.
The Katowice show (the band's first time in Poland) looks a lot better. It's an indoor performance and a lot has gone into making it look good. The lights are awesome and the stage itself looks good. The band does much to create a passionate atmosphere. Those who were there that night sure got a great performance. The camera work is much better on this one, being less chaotic and focusing more on the band. The set consists of songs from "Mandylion" and "Nighttime Birds" but three opening tracks of the show are missing, which again, is a pity. The performance looks good and it would have been great to see a complete set.
You might have noticed I didn't mention the sound quality of both of the shows. I did it on purpose as I really don't like it. Crystal clear sound quality is more or less exactly what fails to describe it. The recording sounds too dull and the upper range is getting a bit lost. At least it's good that you can still hear all the instruments and they don't leave each other in shadows.
Conclusion? Well for the price I got this DVD for I'd say it's not that bad although, on the whole the quality is average. It's a pity the band wasn't given the chance to polish this release and Century Media didn't put enough effort into it. As The Gathering's website advises, skip it. Unless you are a hungry fan says I. Nevertheless, you are still advised to wait till the new official DVD "A Sound Relief" is released. And as a footnote: what I rate here is not The Gathering's performance or their effort but Century Media's lousy production work on this official bootleg and unfair treatment of the jewel that is The Gathering.
Written on 27.04.2005 by
I shoot people.
Sometimes, I also write about it.
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| Troy Killjoy
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