Personally, I love progressive metal and I couldn’t give up the opportunity to go see ENMA, behind closed doors and INHALO tonight. At 5 euro, currently almost as expensive as a beer, that’s almost seeing 3 bands for free! I wasn’t the only one to reach that conclusion: the place was packed! Tilburg being the unofficial metal capital of the Netherlands and ENMA being from Tilburg, they probably have a lot of local fans as well. However, the place was packed from the first till the last band, and judging from the movement and the smiles on peoples faces, everyone enjoyed it at least as much as I did.
INHALO started with an opening track which sounded really cool, but would have made even more impact if they had a live keyplayer on stage. They did a playthrough of their whole album ‘Severe’ which the band released in july this year. INHALO has groove in just the right places, it’s easy to headbang and groove along. Emotional vocals, plenty of vocal and guitar harmonies and delays for days. Frontman Fons has a voice that reminds me a bit of Steve Wilson, but is unique in other places and fits the music perfectly. Add harmonies of both Peter and the female guitarist (who’s name I’ve missed! I’m so sorry!) and you get a dreamy sound that fits Riverside and Porcupine Tree. One of the final tracks in their setlist, ‘Last Vestige’, even brings in some metalcore vibes. INHALO brought a lot of energy to the stage, and performed a flawless set. Frontman Fons had great interaction with the crowd and had a lot of humour. Great opener for the night!
behind closed doors
behind closed doors is an instrumental trio with member from Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. They released their album ‘caged in helices’ today, so this was their album release show. The lack of vocals also means they don’t have a frontman to interact with the crowd, but I didn’t miss that at all. Behind closed doors is a soundtrip from start to finish. They create a massive wall of sound, playing over a backing track that not only includes the string quartet and violin parts that are featured on ‘caged in helices’, but multiple layers of guitars as well.
Behind closed doors is tight a fuck. The more djenty riffs and atmospheric melodic parts follow each other nicely and create a setting where you just want to emerge yourself in the sound. At some points it even reminds me of black metal, with the cellos and the dissonant wall of sounds. They deliberately create music without lyrics, to give the listener the freedom to create their own story to the song. They meant the listener to emerge themselves in sound, and they did so perfectly with this performance.
Final act of the night is ENMA, who also have an album release today. They do a full playthrough of ‘Apathy Awakened’ during this gig. The massive wall of sound we’ve had earlier tonight is lacking a little bit at some points, but that’s only because this band plays most lines live, except for some strings. After the first track however, the band seems to feel more comfortable on stage and the balance in sound is fixed. This is the first act with synchronised headbanging on stage, with the guys each having a gorgeous head of metal manes. ENMA is grungy, groovy progressive metal, again with heavy Riverside, Tool and even Opeth influences. The vocal harmonies for this band are epic and live as good as on the album and the vocal lines are what remind me of Opeth the most in some parts. The band seems to have a lot of fun on stage, interacting well with each other and with the crowd, but the crown goes to frontman Alex. His facial expressions are a show on its own :-D. The setlist as well as the album is a nice mix of heavier and more mellow tracks. Congrats on a great release!
Want to check out these bands for yourselves?
Listen to their new albums in the players below. Or you can check out their pages in out database: