Coven @ Willem Een, Arnhem, 31 July 2019

Coven is one of the first bands to incorporate occult themes in their music. And as such had a major influence on the metal scene. Their first album was released in 1969 and is now 50 years old. Of the line-up from then only singer Jinx Dawson is still present, she formed a new lineup and did a tour through Europe. And Arnhem was the sole stop in the Netherlands. The small venue was nicely filled up, mostly with metal heads judging by the band shirts.

The opening band was Demon Head from Denmark who I didn’t know in advance. There mostly traditional hard rock music with some metal influences here and there. And to no one surprise some occult influences as well. Generally well played, vocally okay, but a bit bland. And the songs aren’t all that interesting really. For the last two songs or so they switch to acoustic guitars instead of electric which was kind of interesting. Not bad, but not all that great either.

Coven on the other hand was a whole different thing all together. After the instruments were setup, a coffin was placed upright on the stage adorned with a large upside down cross. And after some intro music, it was opened by the other musicians and Jinx appeared. She sang the first song Out of Luck with a face mask which made the vocals a bit muffled. The majority of the set consisted of course of songs from Witchcraft Destroys Minds and Reaps Souls. The awesome Coven in Charring Cross was played early in the set. As was Wicked Woman. The songs are a bit heavier and have a crunchier sound than on the album, but I guess that is mainly due to the 50 years old recording technique. The other songs were mostly from the latest album Jinx, and fitted nicely in the set. Musically very solid; Jinx vocal still sound as powerful as 50 years ago, but maybe not reaching all those high notes anymore. But great gig none the less.

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