Within Temptation deliver finely tuned metal to Beirut

BEIRUT: After a delay of 45 minutes or so, Within Temptation gave local symphonic metal lovers an opportunity to indulge their passions, with the Dutch ensemble fulfilling its promise to make Tuesday night at Forum de Beyrouth a memorable one.

Fans were not of any single type. There were those from the metal scene, clad in black dresses and T-shirts, and adorned with the logos of bands associated with dark eyeliner and other black-on-black accessories. Less hardcore enthusiasts turned up at the Forum wearing seasonal outfits in this year’s approved colors.

When the doors opened around 8 p.m., approximately 3,000 people sprinted in to grab their favorite spots.

The audience was worked-up into a lather by an hour-long opening session with Anneke van Giersbergen, with the former lead singer of The Gathering and her metal accompanists driving the crowd crazy with their remarkable power chords.

With the dimming of the lights at set-change, the audience’s eyes urgently tracked every onstage move in anticipation of Within Temptation’s appearance. Before they knew it, the crew had appeared before them.

For the next 90 minutes, Sharon den Adel transfixed fans with her modest delivery of such songs as “Ice Queen,” “What Have You Done,” “Faster,” “Memories” among others.

Although this was Within Temptation’s first performance in Lebanon, they are hardly new to the scene, having been on the circuit for some 14 years.

Accompanied by her guitarists, den Adel offered a highly energized performance. Her vocal pyrotechnics were lit up by her dancing and leaping about the stage, suggesting the veteran still clearly enjoyed performing. From schooling the audience in how to follow the beat with the beginning of each tune, to the gratitude she showed with each round of applause, den Adel is still clearly the master of her onstage domain.

Before they departed, Within Temptation promised to visit Lebanon again, leaving their satisfied audience bereft, longing for their speedy return.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 12, 2012, on page 16.




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