29 Oct 2012 - Thorsten
Black-Metal | Consouling Sounds | Release date: 29 Oct 2012
Amenra is a phenomenon – their music is so experimental that it will leave you speechless whenever you see them. Capturing this was the aim of three different live-records by now. Each one is a different – not only the setlists but also in the sense of the band’s performance.
Amenra live shows are Amenra live shows are Amenra live shows – describing them is harder than telling your best friend to “eff off” when he’s too close, also because Amenra have this way of crawling under your skin, settling in nicely and not leaving your intellectual and emotional memory all too soon. I can still vividly recall these (what I call) “Amenra-moments” when whole crowds of hundreds of people made the very move at the very same time, moving like one huge wave to the sound of the trance provided by the guys on stage and their chant-like performance. The music is doomy, repetitive and has the same effect that old ancients tribal music must have had on native people some hundred years ago. And it even serves a similar purpose – often these rituals were used to cleanse those attending from something, maybe evil spirits, maybe driving away some ghosts basically trying to help people cleanse themselves from bad emotions.
There are by now three official Amenra live recordings: Live from 2012, Live II from 2015 and Alive from 2016. While the latter is focused more on the acoustic side of the band, presenting the songs in stripped-down versions, the former two show their differences in other ways: Even though they share some songs (both have versions of ”Razoreater”, “Silver Needle Golden Nail”, “Aorte” and “Am Kreuz”) but more than half of the songs on both lists are different, which of course also stems from the fact that the band had released some new material in between these two recordings. Furthermore, Live seems to be more crisp on the recording while Live II shows more of the live character as the audience is much more audible here.
Otherwise both recordings show a band in full command of their songs, their instruments and their whole equipment. It doesn’t actually matter which version of ”Razoreater” or ”Aorte” you prefer, who will be hard-pressed to find a Black-Metal-song which can pull you in more, which will completely erase all other things from your mind like this one. All three recordings also show why Colin is one of the most intense, if not the most intense, singer in the genre. You can completely believe him and his vocals, there is nothing preposterous about them. And in that aspect it also doesn’t matter, if his vocals are clearer and cleaner (as on Alive) or grittier, exorcistic (Live, Live II). One thing that definitely sets the first one from 2012 apart from the other is the guestlist on ”Aorte – Ritual because among others we had one half of Oathbreaker with Caro Tange and Gilles Demolder.
Thus, whichever live recording you prefer, you will listen to a band that will not leave you unmarked, unchanged. They will roll over you and leave a huge imprint on your concert memory!