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Serenity / Pythia / Pet Slimmers Of The Year http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/c8/d4/1e/2420_serenitylivereviewthumb_1340993874.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 29, 2012    
 
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Serenity / Pythia / Pet Slimmers Of The Year - Camden Underworld, London (UK) - 25th March 2012

Tonight The Underworld played host to Austrian symphonic metallers Serenity. Also on the bill was London based heavy metal band Pythia and alternative metal act Pet Slimmers of The Year from Peterborough (replacing the originally announced Nemesea).

Slimmers consist of three rather unassuming guys who simply strolled out and began playing. Their music is driven by the bass and guitar mixing heavy thundering riffs and intricate melodies. But even at their heaviest there was a relaxed feel to it all. There were no lyrics and the songs were not introduced so it’s only possible to say they showcased four lengthy tracks. The band left the stage as subtly as they entered laying down their instruments and walking off. The interval saw the place reach about half full including plenty in Pythia t-shirts. As soon as the lights fired up the band erupted with the single from their new album ‘Betray My Heart’. The guitars were on full throttle but this resulted in the lower end vocals from Emily Ovenden being somewhat lost. When she belted out the higher pitched wails she broke through but the deeper tones disappeared. Thankfully by the time they moved onto ‘Sarah (Bury Her)’ Ovenden could be heard much more clearly. Set list wise Pythia concentrated on the new album with the only other debut release track being ‘Army Of The Damned’. They closed out with ‘The Circle’, ‘Cry For A Nation’ and ‘Heartless’.

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Even though The Underworld didn’t fill anymore there was a huge roar as Serenity walked out. The ‘Heys’ began before they struck up the bombastic opening of ‘Rust Of Coming Ages’. Eventually singer Georg Neuhauser appeared like a triumphant general. He placed his foot on the amp and raised a fist to greet the excitable crowd. With this being the bands first headline shows here they had time to play songs from each record. ‘Reduced To Nothingness’ made an early entrance followed swiftly by ‘New Horizions’. With its English topic and lyrics this prompted a particularly feverish reaction from the crowd. Neuhauser appeared proud to introduce ‘Circle Of My Second Life’ and ‘Journey’s End’ both being rarely played. Other oldies like ‘Canopus 3’ and ‘Forever’ appeared along with rousing renditions of ‘Far From Home’, ‘When Canvas Starts To Burn’ and ‘Heavenly Mission’ from ‘the last release. Mid set came the emotional ballad ‘Fairytale’s’ which saw the first appearance of the bands guest female vocalist, Clémentine Delauney. There were lots of hands in the air and phones aloft for the harmonic duet at the conclusion. Serenity ended the night as it had begun with one selection from each record. Serenade of Flames’ saw the return of the guest female who encouraged plenty of hand clapping from those at the front. The audience was stoked further by ‘Valetum’ before they finished off with ‘Engraved Within’ from their debut.

Despite a half full venue, this was an excellent night. Pet Slimmers were an interesting choice to open. Despite each member playing their instrument well the laid back performance and persona was too mellow and atmospheric. Pythia on the other hand gave an energetic and entertaining performance, even if it wasn’t vocally perfect. Once the mixing was sorted, Ovenden gave a strong showing whilst the guitarists tore through various progressions and bounded around. It just a shame than an over emphasis on the six strings spoiled the opening of a lively set. But without a doubt, this evening belonged to Serenity. Neuhauser sounded wonderfully clear tonight and his voice shone from song to song. He was superbly supported by the musicians with each track being excellently performed. The band used this opportunity for an extended set well choosing a diverse set list.

Serenity seem to improve with each album and each performance. Tonight was a fine example of what they have to offer. It may not have been a packed house, but those that did come gave it all with their voices and hands.

Dave Scott

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