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  VETRAR DRAUGURINN TAKE ZEIST INTO THE DARK LIGHT
Vetrar Draugurinn/End OfThe Dream: De Peppel, Zeist


ian sutherland
Words and Pictures: Ian Sutherland

Vetrar Draugurinn



Like all young, ambitious bands, End Of The Dream have been working hard to get noticed since their inception in 2013, gigging around their native Netherlands regularly. Tonight it's De Peppel in Zeist, a typically excellent small club venue (most towns in the Netherlands seem to have one) in a sleepy town outside Utrecht.

As befits the amount of gigs they have under their belt this band are tight and together from the off and the guitar work of Robert van Ekeren and Armen Shamelian is particularly impressive. As a female fronted symphonic Metal band the focus is very much on the singer of course and Micky Huijsmans has a warm and friendly attitude and a good voice too plus spectacular good looks so ticks all the boxes.

Vetrar Draugurinn

Style wise they are a traditional symphonic band with lots of samples and a mixture of songs that rock, have an epic edge plus the occasional big ballad. There were a lot of bands doing this kind of material ten years ago and it seems to be less common now so I'm not sure that End Of The Dream have timed their entrance into the scene all that well. I'm also not convinced how much truly memorable material they have. However they do go down very well tonight so maybe there is room for one more likeable symphonic Metal band at the table. Their forthcoming second album will be an interesting listen.

Headliners Vetrar Draugurinn have well known names in their ranks in Stream Of Passion guitarist Eric Hazebroek and Autumn vocalist Marjan Welman, but with a new band they too like their support act tonight have to put the hard work in to get it launched. Tonight is one of a series of gigs in support of their EP '1 (One)' but getting everything settled in is made a little more difficult as regular live second guitarist Thomas Cochrane is unavailable. Having good connections always helps though and the stand in tonight is the excellent Edo van der Kolk from Kingfisher Sky.

Vetrar Draugurinn

Starting with 'Mother Of Northern Skies' from the EP any signs of nerves quickly disappear as the band wrap themselves around the meaty riffs and melodic lead lines of their brand of melancholy Metal. The songs here often have a brooding, dense quality but this is no My Dying Bride style doomfest. There is always melody to be found, if not from Hazebroek's trademark lines then from the magic voice of their singer. Ms Welman has a smooth, luscious, creamy milk tone to her voice and that compliments the music of Vetrar Draugurinn perfectly by being able to both match the melancholy vibe yet add a light touch, a ray of sunshine in the darkness.

With only six tracks officially released so far, four on their EP and two download only, much of the set consists of as yet unfamiliar material from their forthcoming debut album. I wasn't sure about the pacing of the set sometimes and there were maybe a couple of times they could have varied the tempo of back to back songs more, but on new songs like the cheerily titled 'Death Will Come For Us' the shuffling rhythms supplied by drummer Jim van de Kerkhof and bassist Douwe de Wilde are becoming another of the band's signatures.

The standout of the new tunes is 'Thirteenth Night' with some really meaty drumming, haunting guitar work and space for the really beautiful quality of the vocal to make an impact.

Vetrar Draugurinn

'Vigil' and 'Bleak Earth' are more familiar ground and come across with some confidence with the stand in man on guitar smiling away and obviously enjoying the new and unfamiliar experience.

After an hour or so things are wrapped up with a cover of Ghost Brigade's 'Into The Black Light' and the ovation at the end from a crowd still mostly unfamiliar with this new music from well known faces shows that things are certainly very promising for Vetrar Draugurinn. They deliver melancholy Metal music with a smile and a relaxed vibe and it is actually a powerful and interesting combination. Hopefully current label interest will soon result in a debut album for us to savour.

Vetrar Draugurinn

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End Of The Dream:

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Vetrar Draugurinn:

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Check out more of Ian Sutherland right here.

28th May 2017










 


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