Saturday, October 11, 2014

Within Temptation / Amaranthe at Rams Head Live 10/7/2014

I went to see Within Temptation ($30) at the Rams Head Live. They brought the amazing Amaranthe with them this time. Last time, I went to PA to see them.  I had seen WT in 2011 last. I met up with Bridget D, Mari, their sisters, Spencer, Ray, PhotoRay, Lauri, Danica, and I think Bobbie and Nick were there too. This evening there was also Butcher Babies at Soundstage and Deicide /Inquisition/ Spetic Flesh/ Carach Angran at Empire, but that didn't prevent this show from being pretty packed!

After milling about and hanging outside a little bit, we were in line for a bit, which had extended out both sides of Rams Head Live! This was going to be another big show! I was afraid that I was going to be stuck in the back like last time :/  I was eagerly anticipating seeing Amaranthe again, but perhaps moreso for Within Temptation, who really have been solid.

More like Dangerous Prices

Drop Dead Merchandise zzz

I was perplexed to see a huge line for merch. I think that let us get up pretty close for the most part. I was underwhelmed by the merchandise. Amaranthe had 2 lame looking logo shirts (1 black, 1 white) evoking their new album, at a whopping $35 and "The Nexus" CD for $15. And that's it. Within Temptation had Hydra Deluxe CD ($20), a Hoodie, mugs ($15), a tote bag ($20?), various shirts ($35), and maybe a flag. Nothing caught my eye, but they seemed like they were doing brisk business. Hey, more power to Sharon den Adel and crew because they were selling and you need to eat, but $35 is a bit much for me.

The real 'Trinity'

Elize <3 and underrated Olof on guitar

So, up pretty close for Swedish Pop Dance Metal Amaranthe was mostly a treat. However, I think something was up with the location where we were standing sound wise (in front of Olof the guitarist), as things sounded a bit muffled and muddy at many times. The LOVELY Elize, Jake, and the other guy sounded good when they were not drowned out by the bass and drums. Their 7th member (the laptop) was on the side, and you could see each singer visit HAL 9000 at various times to adjust levels or something. Or check email. Set wise, they played 3 new songs (including the not sure what to think about "Drop Dead Cynical"), some hits, and a ballad. They also played the underwhelming "Call Out My Name," which was a shame, considering that they could have played about 10 other better songs ("Electroheart," "Stardust," "Razorblade," etc.) and they chose this and some new songs that not many ppl may have heard? I am afraid that their new album may be lacking, based on these 3 new ones. I think they should have reconsidered restructuring their setlist order. Regardless I had fun during their set and think I still have a sore neck days after, writing this. I thought they were way better last time, but I think they had some new converts on this tour. I was a bit disappointed, but I still had fun. Also of note was that Elize did only one kind of costume change this time, which was basically removing her jacket. There was also one high kick. At one point, some fan had a license plate (or fake one?) that was DDCYNICAL which I thought was a bit silly

Oh the Queens of the night <3 <3

Before Within Temptation's set, people were inching up closer and closer, and I got moved back a bit, but that was fine, as long as some tall chump wasn't in front of me (and/or taking videos the whole time...). The lights went down, and some video about a dragon or the like came on, and people erupted when they started projecting/playing "Paradise." It was a moving start, similar to how amazing them starting with the chilling "Shot in the Dark" (sadly missing this time) last time in 2012. There was something nagging in the back of my mind, however, as this would be the first of many (4) duet songs where the other vocalist was piped in. I'm still not sure how I feel about it cause it worked live, but it was a bit of a cop out to not have someone sing (or um...rap...) live instead. There were also various keys/synth/sfx piped in, which I think I've come to expect/accept in a live setting. Sharon and the boys sounded pretty great, much crisper than Amaranthe. The lead guitarist sounded good, but I don't think they gave him anything that difficult to play.

Dangerous ish

Hey Dawg I heard u like Xzibit 

Show wise, the screen in the back showed different video clips, like last time, which I thought really added to the concert- Arch Enemy did a similar thing in 2011 too.  This also came into play with the duet songs, you'd see the absent singer kind of virtually there, so it was kind of like... that they were there? Kind of? Regardless, Keith Caputo (from Life of Agony? had to look this up cause I don't know either)'s face looked extra scary on the big screen, not to mention the closeups of his nostrils during "What..." Xzibit was about as ridiculous but it didn't sound as bad as usual for some reason.  I thought it was funny to note that the next evening I would be seeing Howard Jones ("Dangerous") with The Devil You Know opening for Lacuna Coil at the Fillmore, and this evening I saw his digital self on the screen. I liked the videos with the words so us plebeians who didn't know every word would be able to sing along.

What about fringe? Isn't it enough?

Setlist wise, we had 6 new songs, 1 needless cover (tho it did sound good), some standards, some newer songs. I would have excluded the somehow popular "What Have You Done," I think that song is pretty lames, but apparently most of the crowd loved it/was shouting along. I would have loved to hear "The Howling" and "Shot in the Dark" (not the Ozzy one) too. I don't think I had heard "The Cross" before, but that sounded pretty good too. Sharon had some fringe sleeves at one point, her sole costume change/alteration.

Withins Temptations

The crowd was much louder for WT, and there was a ton more singing along, as well. Sharon talked to the crowd a few times, with some very heart felt topics. Something about the atmosphere was very conducive to feels, for whatever reason. One was about thanking the fans so that they can continue keep doing music, and another was about loving each other and that there was too much hate - gay, straight, whatever, and that people should try to get along. This was particularly interesting to note as there were some trans, some gay , and some straight people there. I think there was not very much negativity except some friends hating on Amaranthe ;3 It's great to have something that many people of so many different backgrounds connect over some commonality- music in this place. During "What..." there was one energetic fan who Sharon handed the mic and sang the majority of the verse part in place of Keith- I am pretty sure he didn't miss any lyrics and sounded pretty strong.

Wine Temptation and some Angel thing

 Overall, it was a pretty great concert, despite Amaranthe being a little disappointing. Within Temptation was worth the wait. I know I had a much better time than I would have at Deicide (...Inquisition tho!). Totally recommended.

Next show: Lacuna Coil/ Devil You Know
Another Opinion: In My Winter Castle

Amaranthe (8- 8:35 ish)

  • Digital World 
  • Hunger 
  • Invincible 
  • 1.000.000 Lightyears 
  • Trinity 
  • Afterlife 
  • Amaranthine 
  • Call Out My Name 
  • Drop Dead Cynical 
  • The Nexus 
Within Temptation(~9 -10:40 ish approx)

  • Intro (Dragon (Short Movie))
  • Paradise (What About Us?) *
  • Faster 
  • Let Us Burn 
  • In the Middle of the Night 
  • Fire and Ice 
  • Our Solemn Hour 
  • Stand My Ground 
  • Summertime Sadness (Lana Del Rey cover)
  • The Cross 
  • And We Run* 
  • Iron 
  • Dangerous* 
  • Angels 
  • Edge of the World 
  • What Have You Done*
  • Mother Earth 
  • Covered By Roses 
  • SinĂ©ad (Acoustic)
  • Ice Queen