Loreley Amphitheatre, St. Goarshausen, Germany
22nd to 24th July 2022
After a three year hiatus, Night of the Prog, number 15, returns at Loreley.
After the traditional stop for dinner at the Maxi Grill, we also traditionally missed the opening band – shame as I’ve been enjoying Soulsplitter’s recent release Connection – a bit on the metal side, if you like that, which I do!
Essential to stay hydrated in the summer months…
And now we’re in, just on time for Smalltape, their second appearance on “The Rock”. Nice performance, although the mix is a bit rough. Playing cuts from their great new release The Hungry Heart, which is a more symphonic shift compared to their first album, The Sea.
Pure Reason Revolution hit the stage and are sounded great. Max had improved and the crowd has increased by 50%.
What’s interesting with PRR is that last time I saw them live (Midsummer Prog 2019…), Chloe was on bass and vocals and front stage, now she’s behind the keys, no bass guitar, but it works, and my goodness, they’re rocking!!
[A correction to the above – Chloe Alper wasn’t playing with PRR as she wasn’t available, but in my defence, the young lady on keyboards and vocals did a very good impression of her from a distance!]
Penultimate band was The Pineapple Thief, very much a band of the moment and riding on the crest of a wave for the last few years, going full strength to strength. Bruce Soord has always been a great song-writer, but the band have been propelled to a new level since Gavin Harrison joined. I think it’s the fourth time I’ve seen them in as many years and they put in a typically professional performance, with Bruce a bit more upbeat and chatty than usual.
As night fell, headliners Renaissance took to the stage. Not sure they were the right act; for sure they’ve got a place in the Prog universe, but much more the folk side of thing. That being said, there were plenty of folks there to see them and Annie Haslam’s voice is still magnificent.
One too many beers later and it’s time for bed!
Good morning Prog-lovers, it’s Loreley Saturday, the sweet spot for quality music, sun and a beer, or ten.
Kicking off proceedings is Sentryturn – to be honest I have never heard of them, but not bad, some elements of Riverside in their music.
Fughu next, imagine if Fish-era Marillion went metal and it’s in that ball-park. Got to love the lead-singer making an effort and involving the crowd, went down well.
Traumhaus now hit the stage with their symphonic Prog, playing some cuts from their late release In Oculis Meis – great album, give it a listen.
And later tonight we have Steve Hackett! A flower?
Jadis! My goodness, last CD I had of theirs was Photoplay, super symphonic Prog and a treat to see Martin Orford live.
Lazuli seem to play Loreley every year, and why not? They’re incredibly popular here, a real crowd pleaser. Long-time guitarist Gédéric Byarhas has been replaced by Arnaud Beyney, who bring some new textures to the songs, as well as playing bass from time to time. As always, a rising performance, along with the traditional 9 Hands Around the Marimba performance. I must give a strong mention to Vincent Barnavol’s drumming, which was remarkable. Everyone should see Lazuli live.
Headlining Saturday we were treated to Steve Hackett – also a regular fixture at Night of the Prog. The excellent Craig Blundell has taken over the drum stool and Jonas Reingold is now the regular bassist; that’s one hell of a rhythm section and they sure didn’t disappoint. Amanda Lehman joined the band on stage for the opening songs, so of course they played Shadow of the Hierophant – damn that’s a fine track… nothing new to report on the rest of the setlist, you all know it by now, but always a treat to hear Supper’s Ready and Firth of Fifth. Top performance.
Due to illness, Dave’s blog has to end here. 🙁 All the best Dave, get well soon.
[All photos by Dave Baird]
~ The Artists:
Fughu – Website | Facebook | Bandcamp
Steve Hackett – Website | Facebook
Jadis – Website | Facebook | Bandcamp
Lazuli – Website | Facebook
Pure Reason Revolution – Website | Facebook
Sentryturn – Website | Facebook
Smalltape – Website | Facebook | Bandcamp
Soulsplitter – Website | Facebook | Bandcamp
The Pineapple Thief – Website | Facebook