THE GATHERING

(NETHERLANDS)

DISCLOSURE

(2012)
LABEL:

AUTRE LABEL

GENRE:

ATMOSPHERIC ROCK

TAGS:
Female vocals, Hovering, Melancholic
"Closer to "How To Measure A Planet?" than to "The West Pole", "Disclosure" confirms that The Gathering still remains this precious and inspired band."
CHILDERIC THOR (07.09.2012)  
4/5
(0) opinions (0) comment(s)
A few years ago, Arjen Anthony Lucassen, who called on her several times for Ayreon, regretted that Anneke van Giersbergen was wasting her time and talent in a band such as The Gathering, which he did not feel was worthy of her singer's exceptional voice. The trajectory that Anneke and her former band now follow separately seems to prove him right, the former successfully multiplying projects under her name, or that of Agua De Annique, and various collaborations, while the latter's activity is limited to a single album since 2009, without counting however the EP City From Above, complementing The West Pole.

In fact, and notwithstanding an inspiration still intact, it remains true that The Gathering struggles to keep the aura that was his between 1995 and 2006. However, the first post-Anneke opus was an undeniable success that saw its authors continue to work, to shape their art thanks to a new recruit of choice, Silje Wergeland, whom Octavia Sperati's two offerings, Winter Enclosure and Grace Submerged, had already made known to us. Her vocal mimicry could both reassure and disappoint those who would have preferred a radical change. Recorded three years later, what about Disclosure, the long-awaited tenth album? Would it be in the same vein as "Heroes For Ghosts", the dazzling single released many months ago?

As often with The Gathering, the work displays a deceptive simplicity that requires many attentive listenings to erase it. More surprising, however, is the choice of placing in the opening the two perhaps less successful but pleasant tracks, which, however, allow the menu to gain little by little in intensity. Despite the powerful Norwegian singer's voice, "Paper Waves" can't hide its banality, while "Meldown" is uneven, although interesting in that it gives the impression to go in several directions at the same time, mixing female and male vocals (the one of keyboardist Frank Boeijen), electronic keys and trumpet notes, for a result that at first seems to be a failure but which ends up showing real qualities.

However, it's from "Paralized" that Disclosure takes off towards the atmospheric colours of How To Measure A Planet?, the band's masterpiece. Very beautiful, this title prepares for the elevation embodied by "Heroes For Ghosts" in a shorter version of a few seconds. Apogee of the listening, this track, more than ten minutes long, is also the one where Silje's vocal lines are most confused with Anneke's which perhaps explains the effect it has on the listener who will always regret the departure of the Dutch girl. Close in its progression and its twilight darkness from "Black Light District", the track starts slowly before unrolling an instrumental bridge of an emotional beauty to give you shivers, between Hans Rutten's hypnotic drums and this heart-rending trumpet.

Framed by the two parts of the diptych "Gemini", stratospheric pearls carried by the Norwegian charm, "Missing Seasons", disenchanted breath of a touching sobriety, and even more "I Can See Your Miles" animate a second half of a more homogeneous album. This last track turns out to be the second track on which Disclosure can count on to consolidate its status as a great record. It's also the most audacious track, crossed by multiple ambiences. Generous bass, magnificent violin lines, electronic sounds and drum roll merge to take off very high towards the stars.

In spite of a few minor reservations (hesitant male vocal on "Meltdown", a soft beginning), Disclosure confirms that The Gathering still remains this precious band. This one delivers a record more in line with the expectations because it's closer to How To Measure A Planet? than to The West Pole. But, even though she's been accompanying the Bataves for four years now, Silje still doesn't manage to make people forget her predecessor. It's not for lack of talent, however, but simply for charisma, Anneke's sweet and mischievous presence being hard to replace...
- Official website

TRACK LISTING:
01. Paper Waves - 05:33
02. Meltdown - 07:56
03. Paralyzed - 05:05
04. Heroes For Ghosts - 10:42
05. Gemini I - 04:55
06. Missing Seasons - 03:26
07. I Can See Four Miles - 09:04
08. Gemini Ii - 05:04

LINEUP:
Frank Boeijen: Claviers
Hans Rutten: Batterie
Marjolein Kooijman: Basse
René Rutten: Guitares
Silje Wergeland: Chant
   
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READERS
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