April 7, 2017 - De Pul, Uden (NL)


Exactly one year ago I wrote the following sentence; 'I guess the fans and venue crew made them feel like they were playing a home game. In return they gave an amazing show which will remain a great memory until they return to this venue the next time they visit the Netherlands!'. It was a small part of the concert review (see review) of the performance Karnataka did at De Pul in Uden, not knowing that indeed one year later they would return. However this time around no support act would 'steal' their playing time. They needed all the time to get their show done before the curfew would take place at midnight. Because during their 'END II END' EUROPEAN TOUR 2017 they'll be performing the award winning albums The Gathering Light (2010, see review) and Secrets Of Angels (2015, see review) in their entirety. Time was precious, but due to technical problems during their late sound check, this meant that they could not start on time.

Hayley Griffiths
Finally the moment arrived and the first of the two albums could be played completely. As expected, The Gathering Light would cover the whole of the first set. The opening piece The Calling included a backing track. The first musician was French drummer Jimmy Pallagrosi. While standing behind his drum kit he gently hit the cymbals, following on, Italian guitarist Enrico Pinna joined him and this was more or less the start of the second track from the album. While State Of Grace came to life, Turkish keyboard player Cagri Tozluoglu and bass player, bandleader and Welshman Ian Jones appeared on stage as well. All playing their parts perfectly. For the next track Your World female lead singer and eye catcher Hayley Griffiths completed the line-up. After the song was done the best way possible, she welcomed the Dutch audience in their native language. She carried on with the more mellow piece Moment In Time before the two highlights of the album were played. I guess a Karnataka concert is not complete without Serpent And The Sea and Forsaken. Most of all the latter is a real treat for every proghead and should be heard by everyone who calls
Joy on stage: Jimmy Pallagrosi and Enrico Pinna (r)
himself a lover of progressive rock. The middle section is just outstanding, just listen to Enrico's amazing guitar solo and Jimmy's brilliant drum parts and you know what I am talking about. After two more songs, the oriental sounding Tide To Fall and the wonderful sing-a-long title track, the band left the stage to refill their batteries for the second set. Leaving the crowd with a very positive feeling. After all they had impressed them with a fine hour of well performed progressive rock tunes!

After a short break the band began with the opening track from the Secrets Of Angels album. Again an oriental piece of music could be heard during the performance of Road To Cairo. For the second set, which lasted also one complete hour, Hayley had changed her black outfit for a gold top combined with black shorts. Once again she impressed her audience with her amazing voice and strong stage presentation. Most of all during Because Of You and Poison Ivy she showed that she isn't just an ordinary vocalist. Many times she used her operatic style voice making her different from the other well known female progressive rock singers. Whilst performing, she also managed to interact with her fellow musician on stage and had a smile on her pretty
Ian Jones and Hayley Griffiths (r)
face! I guess that's how you put on a show! Mentioning all of the songs performed is something I will not do, except for the title track which finished off the second set. Secrets Of Angels is certainly the magnum opus on the album and also during the second set. Before they started this song about war, Griffiths introduced the musicians on stage. During the beautiful Celtic opening the percussion parts of Pallagrosi and Jones were very spectacular to watch. After the rather aggressive parts played on the guitars and drums it was time for the more melodic middle section. Here, Tozluoglu and Pinna shone with their performance, and the bands lead vocalist could once again shine by doing some fantastic vocals. After the song was brilliantly finished, the Dutch audience wanted more. However, as I was informed earlier by Ian Jones, no encores were to be expected during this tour. So when Hayley returned to the stage it was a real surprise to see what she was going to do. She charmingly informed the spectators that during this tour only The Gathering Light and Secrets Of Angels were going to be played back to back and nothing else. I guess everybody was already very satisfied with what had been offered music wise by the band, that they had no problems leaving without an encore and joined the band later on at the merchandise table.

Once again Karnataka did set the stage on fire at the Pul in Uden. See you next year, knowing it will be a party once again! Thanks!

Henri Strik (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

Setlist Karnataka:

Set 1
The Calling (intro tape)
State Of Grace
Your World
Moment In Time
Serpent And The Sea
Tide To Fall
The Gathering Light
Set 2
Road To Cairo
Because Of You
Poison Ivy
Forbidden Dreams
Fairytale Lies
Feels Like Home
Secrets Of Angels

Pictures Karnataka by Arthur Haggenburg

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Line up Karnataka:

(left to right)
Cagri Tozluoglu:
Enrico Pinna:
guitars, backing vocals
Hayley Griffiths:
lead vocals
Ian Jones:
bass and bass pedals
Jimmy Pallagrosi:

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