Green Carnation and Beyond The Embrace - February 25, 2006 - Back
US Tour
Albany, NY - Valentine's

First off, the drive to Albany was complete shit!! It started with snow, then more snow, and finally... a blizzard. Vehicles side winding in front of us (my friend Jonathan & I) and going into the ditch... whew! We didn't die, so it was worth the drive after all.

Once we arrived at Valentine's in Albany, we found out how much of a shack the place was. The venue was actually upstairs from the actual Valentine's bar and looked like some other bands' practice space. Oddly enough, though, the place held a comfortable number of people. There probably were no more than 100 people in attendance, probably less because of the horrid weather. So lets see.....

There were 2 local bands that came on before Beyond the Embrace (of which I can't remember the names - sorry?). Both bands were actually very decent. One was kinda like Into Eternity, who utilized half-prog metal clean singing and half-death vocals. The other was more of a sorta Thrash/Metalcore sounding piece.

Beyond the Embrace came on around 9pm and they were certainly worth the wait. This Metal Blade band is kinda like In Flames or Children of Bodom with more technicality. The lead guitar player fucking wailed!!! That was some of the best solo playing I've heard in an extreme band since I last saw Morbid Angel. The sound was very rich in texture. Meaning... all of the instruments could be heard as if you were listening to the disc. An awesome showing for a rapidly growing thrash/death band!!

Finally... Green Carnation of Norway!! This is a band I've been waiting years to witness. Kjetil had been around about the place the whole night, so he had some beer in him and I thought.... uh oh, I hope they sound alright. Good news! As soon as they hit the stage, everything was fairly clear. The sound at first wasn't as good as Beyond the Embraces', but that was likely because of the keyboards.

They played for about an hour and a half...which more than compensated for the long, treacherous drive. The atmosphere was absolutely brilliant once the sound engineer had the levels adjusted right. The two best tracks of the evening for me were probably The Quiet Offspring and A Place For Me. I was a bit disappointed that they didn't at least play some exerts from "Light of Day..." or anything from the "Journey to the End of the Night" album, but the newer material sounded splendid! It was all from the 2 newer metal albums (Blessing in Disguise and The Quiet Offspring). I'll bet they played half of both albums at least.

Afterwards, we chatted with Kjetil and Tchort. I asked them if the weather made them feel at home..."Yeah, sure!" was the reply. All in all... Green Carnation was an extreme honor to finally be able to see and they were a solid live band!! I can't wait to see them again.

The drive back was awesome…


Reviewed By: Thomas Mitchell