JAMES LABRIE / EVERGREY
The 45 minutes gig of Swedish progmetalguys Evergrey was much better this evening than when I last saw them in Weert in 2004. Although the sound, better said the mix, was not as good as usual in the best rock venue of The Netherlands. Evergrey presented us a “summary” of their latest live CD/DVD. Best tracks this evening were “The Masterplan”, with awesome guitar picking and “A Touch Of Blessing”, probably the best song of their last album “The Inner Circle”.
Then James La Brie came unto the stage and looked quite relaxed and happy. His new solo album (for review see our archives) “Elements Of Persuasion” is a great prog metal album, which certainly has musical references with Dream Theater’s last masterpiece “Train Of Thought”. The band consisting of John “The Beast” Macaluso on drums, Andy DeLuca on bass and the fabulous unknown guitar player
Mario Sfogli kicked off with “Crucify”, which is also the opening song of EOP, of course. Live this is also a great song, with stunning vocals by James and dazzling guitar playing by Sfogli. “Alone” and “Undecided”, also of the new album, followed, before James said “hi” to the audience.
As I am a huge Dream Theater fan I have heard James at least a hundred times alive, but this evening his voice was the best I have ever heard, really second to none. As I was watching him I noticed that he slightly changed his style of singing, and that worked for the better without any doubt.
We were also treated to some Mullmuzzler song material, among others “Shores Of Avalon”, “Confronting The Devil” and “Venice Burning”. Great prog rock songs, but I rather prefer the new material, like for instance “Lost”, “Freak”, “Slightly Out Of Touch”(with goose bums melody) or “Oblivious”, which is a rather heavy song. The marvelous set ended with “Invisible”, making this a first-rate prog metal evening, even without James doing any Dream Theater songs. For the critics who still had/have doubts about James’s voice, I can truly say, he proved them definitely wrong, finally…
review & Photos by Martien Koolen,