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Superheat - A Live Album
Released: 2000, Century Media
Mellow. That is the one word I would use to describe the new live CD by the Gathering. "Superheat - A Live Album" is not the kind of disc that you want to put on to get your blood pumping. You would be apt to fall asleep before you any kind of meaningful heart rate could be found. The funny thing is... I enjoyed this CD. The Gathering have none of the elements that I normally look for in a band. There are no soaring vocals, lightning fast guitars or pounding double bass drums. In their place is a sort of laid back atmosphere that draws you into their music and makes them one of those bands that has to grow on you.
The Gathering hail from Holland and this is their sixth full length release. Superheat sounds very little like a live release. The crowd can only be heard between songs which is not surprising as this is not the kind of music that makes you want to thrust your fist in the air. It is much more laid-back and ethereal. There are many electronic effects and while they add a different dimension to many of the songs they just plain don’t need to be in there all the time.
Anneke van Giersbergen has an incredible voice which fits the music like a glove. She has a sort of dreamy quality to her vocals that makes the Gathering’s sound unique and easily recognizable. Highlights of the CD are "On Most Surfaces", "Strange Machines" and "Liberty Bell". The live version of "Liberty Bell" is heavier than the original which is found on The Gatherings last full length CD "How To Measure a Planet?".
If you thrive on metal which makes your blood pump and your head bang, then this is definitely NOT the CD for you. The Gathering deal in atmosphere not in speed. They weave a tapestry of sound and try to bring the listener into their little world. A major problem I have with this disc is that there are no up tempo songs. After awhile the disc seems to drone on. If you are looking for some traditional metal check out Grave Digger. If you are interested in something a little on the ambient side, "Superheat - A Live Album" is guaranteed to help you off to dreamland.
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