October 27, 2018 - Parkvilla Theater, Alphen a/d Rijn (NL)
It almost becomes a tradition that every two years the Cuban progressive rock act Anima Mundi comes to Europe for concerts. The Netherlands are as always one of the several countries they visits. For the second time in their career they came to Alphen aan de Rijn to do a concert for Serious Music Alphen. Two years ago they played at the Parktheater to promote their at the time new album I Me Myself (see review). The album introduced lead singer Michel Bermudez. But as you know in two years many things can change. In the meantime the Parktheater has been renamed into Parkvilla and the band has gone through a line up change again. The band is again fronted by a new face. This time around it is Aivis Prieto behind the microphone to promote their new album Insomnia.
The show the band did on a Saturday evening was the last one in a serious concert venue before they would return to their country a couple of days later. So I expected a well oiled machine, which could entertain their audience all the way through their two sets and final encore. Well this was certainly the case and the biggest complement
A performance which started with a first set, which was mainly focused on their new release. Five of the nine album tracks taken from the new album could already be enjoyed. The remaining album tracks from Insomnia were done after the break. Probably many people in the audience had to get familiar with the new tunes as well. Because the album had just been released and most of the fans just bought it before or after the concert. The other two compositions during the first set were taken from its predecessor I Me Myself. During the fine renditions of Flowers and Somewhere I noticed that the new vocalist didn't have problems singing the lines of his predecessor. As for the new material performed, it became clear that they sounded more energetic compared to the more clean studio versions.
This was also the case during the second set, which was brilliantly opened with a track taken from The Lamplighter (2013, see review). While listening to Dream Child Behind The Mask, it became clear that the bands new singer also could handle the songs which were on the album originally sung by Emmanuel Pirko-Farrath. He has a deeper and darker voice compared to all the other singers who used to be in the band before. But for Aivis it wasn't a problem at all. So once again bravo! Highlights during this second set were without doubt the two tracks taken from the earlier mentioned I Me Myself. Train To Future and Lone Rider are
After the second set the band once again entered the stage to do a final encore. An encore which isn't a surprise for most of the fans. As always Cosmic Man ends an Anima Mundi concert. A song on which most of all Yaroski Corredera can show all of his talents during his bass solo. But also Marco Alonso is during this piece of music for a very short moment in the spotlight, with a short solo performed on his drum kit. And as always some of the people in the audience forget that at the end of the song comes a amazing guitar solo by band member Roberto Díaz. They start applauding as if the song has ended. But that's of course not the case. They probably also forget that some beautiful keyboard parts of Virginia Peraza can be enjoyed as well. I guess it isn't that important because those things happen all the time during concerts.
Looking back on this year's concert of Anima Mundi I can only be positive about it. Because they once again tried hard to entertain their many fans. Even though I had hoped to hear some of their older tunes and less focused on the new album, they brought a smile to my face with their wonderful music. And that's how it has to be!
Henri Strik (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)
Setlist Anima Mundi:Set 1
The Dream Child Behind The Mask
New Tribe's Totem
The Wheel Of Days
Train To Future
Time to Understand
Anima Mundi by Arthur Haggenburg
Click on the picture to enlarge.
Line up Anima Mundi:(left to right)
guitars and backing vocals
keyboards and backing vocals
lead vocals and guitars
drums and saxophone
All Rights Reserved Background Magazine 2018