Anneke Van Giersbergen, Jaded Star (Gazarte, Athens, Greece – 5/10/2022)

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There are some artists or bands that have created a weird and mutual love affair with the greek audience that withstand in the years. I can name a few like SCORPIONS or MADRUGADA. Another example of such artist is Anneke van Giersbergen, who right now is touring throughout Greece (9 different shows in 9 cities). Her stop to Athens was in Gazarte on the 5th of October (in the middle of the working week but who cares!!!).

The line outside the venue was huge and people were looking at us curiously. There were also many unlucky fellows who were seeking in agony for one of the 450 tickets that were available (alas, sold out hours before the show!). Inside, the night begun ideally with JADED STAR, meaning the amazing Maxi Nil, her voice and a piano. The perfect warm up for what was next to come. It was really interesting to listen to their metal songs in an acoustic version. This would not be possible if it were not for Maxi’s amazing talent. Minutes before 10, JADED STAR left the stage under heavy applause and a show that they will definitely remember forever. 

At around 10 the time had come for Anneke. Gazarte was already packed, people were trying to find the best seat and Anneke got on stage with her guitar…just that! Nothing else was necessary. Her setlist included naturally many songs from her solo career and mostly from her last album “The Darkest Skies are the Brightest”. For example “Agape” (explaining how did she come up with the Greek name), “Hurricane” (the last song of the main set), “I Saw a Car” (the most peculiar song as she told us) etc. Of course she presented to us older songs like the touching “My Mother Said” and “Circles”. There were many acoustic remixes of rock hymns like “Running up that Hill” from Kate Bush, the majestic “Hallelujah” from Leonard Cohen, the legendary  “Wish You Were Here” from PINK FLOYD, her collaboration with AYREON “Valley of the Queen” and “Wasted Years” from IRON MAIDEN (one of the highlights of the evening). Finally, she could not ignore her time with THE GATHERING and honored it with “Saturnine” and “Strange Machines” that the audience welcomed with cries of enthusiasm and applause.

Anneke managed to offer us a unique show and make 450 people (from metalheads to common people) to watch her breathless. I can declare right now that her voice is the best (or at least among the 2-3 best) female voice in metal music the last 25-30 years. Oddly, this was the first time I see her live but it would not be the last!!

Live Correspondent: Kostas Boudoukos
Translation/Rendering in English language: Kostas Boudoukos
Cover Artwork: Alexandros Soultatos
Design & Editing: Alexandros Soultatos
Photos: Kostas Boudoukos
Date: September 5th, 2022
External Link: ANNEKE VAN GIERBERGEN – Official Page
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