||STREAM OF PASSION/AUTUMN
De Effenaar, Eindhoven, Holland
2nd May 2014
Autumn are another in a long line of excellent Dutch female fronted Metal bands. On the go on and off since 1995 the current incarnation featuring the smooth, deliciously velvety tones of Marjan Welman on vocals has been dormant recently and this is their first time on a stage in 18 months.
Starting with 'A Minor Dance' from the excellent 'Altitude' album it didn't take long for the tension to dissipate and for the band to hit their stride. They have obviously been rehearsing hard as there was no sign of any rust despite the long lay off and having to bring in a new rhythm section just for these shows.
They specialise in a moody, melodic take on female fronted Metal and while they can rock hard such as on the faster sections of 'Horizon Line' or the epic build up in 'Altitude' what makes them special is their use of melody over atmospheric metal soundscapes. Their effervescent singer is full of personality and obviously excited to be on stage again but still her sweet yet strong voice never wavers and the excellent harmonies from her bandmates add to the full, lush melodic sounds.
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This support set flies by all too quickly and 'The Venamoured' from the most recent album 'Cold Comfort' is a fitting end showcasing all those moody, melodic and metal qualities and getting a very warm reception from the crowd.
Autumn are in the process of writing their sixth full studio album and I'm very much looking forward to it.
Stream Of Passion are out doing some Dutch gigs to promote their recently released album 'A War Of Our Own' before heading off for shows in England then Germany. After a triumphant display in Amsterdam the night before expectations were high but they didn't disappoint.
Opening with 'Monster' they are immediately in their groove, the pounding metal riffs mixing deftly with time changes and lighter melodic touches to make a huge impressive start. When their mercurial singer Marcela Bovio insists "You've become a monster" in the catchy chorus you just have to accept that it must be true.
This was a slimmed down set from their recent album release show so only featured selected highlights from 'A War Of Our Own' but most are already firm favourites in a live setting. Everyone sings along with the chorus of catchy rocker 'The Curse', the title track has an impressive atmospheric groove and 'Don't Let Go' is an epic slab of angst and a great example of why they have passion in the band name. 'The Distance Between Us' had a section of operatic vocals from Ms Bovio which just sent shivers down your spine too.
The band raised money via crowdfunding to make 'A War Of Our Own' and the success of that plus the reaction to the album and good initial sales seems to have them on a high. They have always been an excellent live band but they are really on fire at the moment. The older songs feel like they have a new lease of life and 'Collide' and 'Lost' from the 'Darker Days' album are really special moments in the set, both full of power and of course passion.
Encore time came far too soon and Radiohead cover 'Street Spirit' and traditional set closer 'This Endless Night' close the show on a high with the crowd roaring their approval as the band took a bow at the end.
Stream Of Passion are coming to the UK in May for two dates and on this showing I would say that they're essential viewing. A Metal monster of a live band with progressive and latin leanings and one of the best voices on a stage anywhere. The songs are great too.
I've docked a half from their score only because they didn't play for longer, I think they need to treat us to at least ninety minutes if they can.
Stream Of Passion Live in the UK:
May 9 London Underworld
May 10 Bilston Robin 2
Marcela Bovio-vocals, violin
Johan van Stratum-bass
Photographs supplied by Sharik Derksen