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WEBCounter by GOWEB    

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   PROGPOWER 2002
youngest fan Melody © Marlies Wobben Sjiwa - Baarlo (NL)
October 5th-6th 2002

http://www.progpower.com

René Janssen's ProgPower Europe 2002 festival, held in Baarlo's Sjiwa, is one of the coolest I have been to. This festival has the right size and is well organised. In the afternoon the first three bands played, then there was a dinner break. During this break they had a cover band playing down in the bar and then carried on with 3 bands in the evening. On two days, 13 of 14 bands played. Unfortunately Theory In Practice had to cancel due to some problems with their transport. Their bus broke down near by Hamburg. Tough for me, it was the band I was looking forward to the most. Nevertheless, it was still fantastic, kind of cosy with a little touch of magic. (Silkie)

SATURDAY

Dutch band ANTARES were asked to fill in at the last moment for Everon, who again had to cancel unfortunately. Good band with dominant keyboards. First song "The Noise" was a good opener, heavier than we expected. During the rest of the show, some parts tended to be a bit too long and couldn't hold our attention though and we didn't stay for the whole show. (Marlies)
Divided Multitude © Nico Wobben
DIVIDED MULTITUDE drove 30 hours, all the way from Trondheim/Norway to Baarlo, to play this gig. They were one of the harder acts at ProgPower. From the first point of view the band did not seem to fit in the typical cliché of a prog band and they had some sound problems. Also the vocalist wasn't as powerful as expected and didn't reach the right tone here and there - he was at his best at the rougher passages. It was still a pleasure to see their enthusiasm to play live and to hear the typical Norwegian style. They had a good mix of more quiet and heavier parts and a lot of power in general. A nice bunch of guys enjoyed themselves this weekend in Baarlo :) (Silkie)
Stonehenge © Nico Wobben
/mp/\.jpgm/ Not as heavy as Norway's Divided Multitude, but Hungarian prog metal band STONEHENGE were still kicking well. Another band full of enthusiasm with ear catching songs. Their set had songs from their debut album "Angelo Salutante" as well as from the upcoming album. Zoltán "BZ" Bátky is a great singer and frontman and enjoyed going in the audience to headbang along with them. Sure we will hear more of the band in future. (Silkie)

We missed the dutch UP THE IRONS coverband due to the dinner break we had and from what we heard afterwards we regretted it. It turns out that singer Sascha Burchardt (ex-Sun Caged) does a really wicked imitation of Bruce Dickinson!! (Marlies)

Dead Soul Tribe © Nico Wobben One of the greatest highlights was the Austria-based DEAD SOUL TRIBE, Devon Graves' band. The show started belated due to some sound problems. Devon Graves (a.k.a. Buddy Lackey, well known from his time with legendary psychedelic prog band Psychotic Waltz), with his charismatic vocals, proved once again how to express emotion. With his great rhythm section, drummer Adel Moustafa and bassist Roland Ivenz and also his new rhythm guitarist Roland Kerchbaumer, who had to learn his stuff in a few weeks only and did a great job. Devon knew how to put himself in spotlight, but that's what we love about this genius. Due to Devon's eccentric show, the fans mainly were focused on him and the rest of the band were easily forgotten. And no matter how the psychotic wizard played his guitar, even tenderly caressing with a bow, he did it in its extreme to express that he is one with his guitar. For the song "I Remember" he had changed over to the flute. It was a great show. (Silkie)

Heaven's Cry © Nico Wobben Yes, another great highlight, Canadian's HEAVEN'S CRY did their first gig in Europe. With two albums in their package, they proved themselves live with a magnificent show. With an impressive combination of two lead vocals, three guitars (one was an acoustic) and a fantastic rhythm section, they played their complex songs in a relaxed atmosphere. It is really hard to describe what makes this band so special. Heaven's Cry present pure perfection in a live show, playfully refreshing, the members supplement each other, esp. both lead singers. Hopefully we get to see the band in Europe again soon. (Silkie)

Threshold © Nico Wobben THRESHOLD's last show at ProgPower wasn't so good, so they had to make up for it now. Andrew McDermott was in much better shape now and he did a great show. Musically there was nothing to complain about, it just all sounded great. Only thing is that Andrew's vocals don't do a thing for me personally, so I wasn't too fascinated with this band anyhow. The fans were enthusiastic though and enjoyed songs from the last few albums, like "Phenomenon", "Fragmentation", "Falling Away", "Oceanbound" and encore "Long Way Home". (Marlies)

SUNDAY

The Dutch band ARABESQUE with two female lead singers had their very own style. They combined different styles, but it was a bit hard to figure out in which direction they wanted to go. A bit funky, a bit jazzy, also a bit extreme, nothing really impressive. (Silkie)

Sun Caged © Nico Wobben With the next Dutch band, SUN CAGED, the first highlight of the day entered the stage. Joost van den Broek in Star One outfit behind the keyboard (he practically rolled out of the Star One tourbus on the ProgPower stage!), Rob van der Loo on bass, Dennis Leeflang on drums, Marcel Coenen on guitar and vocalist André Vuurboom did a very good and tight show. André might need to work a bit more on some technical parts of his vocals, but musically, their technical skills were often breathtaking. Hopefully we hear much more of them in the future, because with a very good stage presenence like they had, they should enter bigger stages soon. (Silkie)

A.C.T. © Nico Wobben The Swedes of A.C.T. were the surprise of the day. They did not only do an ear-, but also an eye-catching show. It started already with all the hats at the drum kit, but also singer Herman Saming knew how to entertain. Very good band in the Saga tradition. Unfortunately we had planned our dinner break a bit earlier, so we only saw the first three songs. (Silkie)

Not much to say about THE SONG RETAINS THE NAME, they played covers of Led Zeppelin. Due to the fact that Theory In Practice couldn't make it to Baarlo, the cover band was able to play on the big stage, but didn't seem to impress anyone. (Silkie)

Well, how should we start here...for sure we expected much more. It seemed like the highly recommended ASHES TO ASHES had a bad day. First of all, their stage presence was a big disappointment! Björn Luna (bass) was the only one who knew how to move on stage, while Michael Stenberg (guitar) and vocalist Kenneth Brastad didn't, well that was the impression they gave. Zilla was obviously mainly on the keyboard to play the samples, rarely she played the keyboard or/and did some backing vocals, which were very weak. Sometimes it seemed like she wasn't really singing herself. Also vocalist Kenneth wasn't very impressive this evening. The band After Forever © Nico Wobben couldn't transform the atmosphere of the albums into the live show and they didn't seem too happy themselves either and decided to not play an encore for those fans who shouted for more. (Silkie)

Excellent headliner was AFTER FOREVER. They've become very popular and it showed they have gotten a lot of live-experience. Floor has a beautiful voice, alternating between a soprano and a normal voice and she is a sight for sore eyes. She moves very graciously and seductive, yet very metal (headbanging) at the same time. They played songs from both albums, "Prison Of Desire" and "Decipher". Special mention for latest recrute, guitarist and stage-animal Bas Maas! A great finale of ProgPower with this overwhelming show! (Marlies)

submitted by Silkie 01.01.2003

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