Lords of Metal review » Within Temptation - Mother Earth Tour DVD


Within Temptation - Mother Earth Tour DVD (DVD)

Within Temptation - Mother Earth Tour DVDHorst: The year 2002 saw the big break of the Dutch Gothic Metal band Within Temptation. After years of surviving in the (Metal) underground their latest album ‘Mother Earth’ was picked-up by the masses all of a sudden, and what followed is best to be described as ‘a dream come true’. The album went platinum in Holland (more than 80,000 sold) and did very well abroad also. The band played on every important festival in Holland and Belgium this year. Ozzfest, Parkpop, Waldrock, Pukkelpop, Rock Werchter, Dynamo Open Air, Lowlands, I mean, everywhere you went you were confronted with Sharon, her boys and the inevitable inflatable forest. Now personally I thought it was a bit overdone (after two shows the trick becomes a bit boring), but most of the festival visitors seemed to have a great time, and that is what really counts, right? To close this year in style the ‘Mother Earth Tour’ DVD was put out recently, with which the fans are treated on a nice flashback of this very successful year for Within Temptation.

I do not think that I have to talk about the music, for I guess all of you regular LoM readers quite know what WT are and where they stand for. Also the lost surfer who accidentally stranded in this review will probably know the band from MTV or some other pathetic music-channel, and if you are still drawing a blank, then I guess you lived a life of solitude for the past few years on some forgotten mountain top in the Himalaya. The Box has three components, two DVDs and one audio CD. Let us take a look at them, shall we?

On DVD 1 you can find live-footage from three festivals the band played this year. If you choose to play them in the standard running order it looks like this:

Lowlands (Holland) : Deceiver Of Fools, Caged
Pukkelpop (Belgium) : Mother Earth, Enter
Lowlands (Holland) : Our Farewell (with a guest-singer), The Dance
Rock Werchter (Belgium) : The Promise, Dark Wings
Lowlands (Holland) : Restless, Deep Within (with the inevitable George from Orphanage on grunt), Neverending Story

The live material ends with the WT hitsingle ‘Ice Queen’, which is brought to you as a mix of images from the three different festivals. The quality of the images is excellent by the way, just as the sound quality. I really wonder in relation to the latter how much time they spent in the studio to patch things up. Anyway, in essence it is all a big flashback to last summer. The images of festival visitors in the sun and in the rain, Sharon’s typical mimicking, her fancy-dress parties, the enchanted forest, the fire, the zillions pieces of paper, everybody who happened to catch them this summer probably knows what I am talking about.

Besides the live footage you will also find three video clips on DVD 1: ‘The Dance’, ‘Ice Queen’ and ‘Mother Earth’. It is kind of funny, but in essence these three clips kind of represent the progression of the band through the years. ‘The Dance’ is nothing more than a rather silly and sometimes even hilarious computer animated cartoon (done on a Commodore 64 or something?). With the clip from ‘Ice Queen’ things are going the right way, although up until this day I have never quite understood the role of that blond teenage girl in the clip, but then again, pretty girls dressed in underwear are always a sight for sore eyes to us male chauvinists, right? ‘Mother Earth’ really was their first video that made sense, with nice images fitting the lyrics of the song very well.

DVD 2 is filled with a lot of extras, but I am afraid that, unless you are a big WT fan, you won’t make it through the whole show without using the ‘fast forward’ button on your remote control. What is on the menu then?

Broerenkerk : Two songs (‘Deceiver Of Fools’ and ‘Ice Queen’), taken from the gig the band played at a church in Zwolle (Holland) this year, when they performed a set with a complete choir. I must admit that it looks quite impressive, but regarding the sound it doesn’t make much difference if they use a choir or the usual DAT-tape. Maybe it was quite a happening if you were part of the crowd, but on DVD it is not a killer really.

‘The Making Of…’ : ‘The Making Of The ‘Mother Earth album and cover’ is a real bummer. I expected to see some kind of Rockumentary about the recordings and design process, but instead the viewer is confronted with three minutes worth of home-video footage of the band in the recording and photo studio, supported by a piano tune. Relevant value: none whatsoever. ‘The Making Of The Mother Earth Video’ was more fun to watch, with (again) home video images of their trip to Sweden (where the clip was shot). Because this footage is larded with comments from the band members the amusement value is way higher.

‘Ice Queen’ – Multi Angle Version : The Lowlands version filmed from different camera angles. Just a nice live video-clip.

Backstage : A collection of images which where shot during different tours and festivals. Among others you will find stuff from the Mexican tour, Pinkpop (Holland), Tivoli (Utrecht, Holland) where they received a golden record, Ozzfest (Holland), Rock Werchter (Belgium), Lowlands (Holland) and Parkpop (Holland) where they received a platinum album. It is nice to see this kind of material once, but it isn’t really something I will put on a lot in the future.

Impressions & Interviews : A collection of interviews and stuff from local and national Dutch and Belgian TV & Radio shows. Highlights: the acoustic version of ‘Ice Queen’ in the Belgian TV show 2MXL (really strange, when Sharon doesn’t sing ultra high for a change) and the interview with a Dutch TV hotshot by the name of Jan Douwe Kroeske during the Lowlands Festival (honestly, I really think that JD didn’t know how to deal with the band). The DVD ends with a photo-gallery, which contains about twenty pics. As a bonus the DVD-box comes with an audio CD with the complete Lowlands 2002 gig. The sound is excellent, and with twelve tracks the CD is filled quite nicely.

Well, all said and done I think the conclusion is obvious. This DVD-box is a must-have for every Within Temptation fan and all the others who think WT is a cool band and like to have a visual souvenir from the festivals they visited this year. For the objective viewer there is surely enough to enjoy, especially the live images are cool – and like I said, the sound is just as good – but I don’t think they are longing for all the extras on DVD 2. So it is up to you to decide if you are willing to pay 24 Euro for this product…


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