It's been a while since I posted on here, so I felt an update is long due.
Over the last two months, I've been to some great gigs, beginning with seeing Opeth & Alcest on the 10th of October. It was the start of the first tour Opeth had done since two years previous, not counting a few festivals last year, which Mikael himself said didn't go too well for them.
I went with my dad, buying the tickets for him to pay him back. For me, Opeth were on my 'bucket list' and rightly so. Aside from being a great live band, sounding very close to the original records (to me the material they played from Pale Communion sounded exactly like on album!), their stage presence was great, Mikael being humorous & joking with the audience, despite how he repeatedly mentioned how nervous they were, given that it was their first non festival gig they had done in two years.
Their set list was quite odd, they varied it between all 11 albums they had done, nearly covering every one. This meant playing a lot of their older more metal material, which was great. However given that I wasn't so acquainted with their pre-2005 material, some of the songs I didn't know especially well, however that didn't detract at all from the performance.
Alcest were an interesting support act, to define their genre, I'd call them a shoegazey metal band, often referencing death and black metal styles. I had listened to some of their music before the gig, however most of their material was new to me. Considering how full and ambient their sound is, it was hard to perfect this at a gig. They did it well, and it sounded good aside from the vocals which were set a little too quiet.
The vocals were another interesting thing about the band; they were all in French. It was a nice change, rather than to see yet another non-English nationality band write their music in English instead of their native language. The French language & the way it flowed also suited the music.
An interesting point, as someone interested in guitars, amps & audio engineering, it was interesting to see their guitarists using Jazz Choruses and slamming them with pedals to get a distorted sound; I've never really heard many metal artists getting their tone that way.
Considering Opeth have been one of my favorite artists for quite a while, buying merch was a must. While I am a little against the idea of getting yet another black band T-shirt, I felt this one was deserving.
1) Eternal Rains Will Come
2) Cusp of Eternity
4) The Moor
6) Elysian Woes
8) April Ethereal
9) The Devil's Orchard
10) The Lotus Eater
11) The Grand Conjuration