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VINE VOICETOP 500 REVIEWERon 25 May 2013
Within Temptation are a Dutch symphonic metal group - their music combines the sweep of orchestral music with the energy and power of heavy metal, topped by the superb vocals of Sharon den Adel. On their albums, the orchestral parts tend to be keyboard patches, but for this one-off concert, they joined forces with the Dutch Metropole Orchestra and a choir, and played a 2 hour set to a sold-out Rotterdam Ahoy.

And it's superb - in general, when a rock band gets together with an orchestra, the result is at best incongruous and at worst embarassing, but Within Temptation's music is designed to sound like this - the addition of a real orchestra and choir just fills out the sound to the way it is quite clear the band always wanted to sound. I was never 100% convinced by Within Temptation before watching this - they seemed to be slightly copying other bands in the genre, like Nightwish - but this CD and DVD has made a believer out of me. This is the definitive symphonic metal band, giving the definitive symphonic metal performance.

The show looks and sounds superb, with both band and orchestra on top form and clearly having the time of their lives. The video captures what it must have been like to be there, with only a slight overuse of unnecessary effects from time to time to spoil things. The 5.1 sound mix is stunning, with excellent use of the surround channels for the haunting Gregorian chants of the choir. If you buy the deluxe package, you get the full show on DVD and CD,plus a bonus disc of a second (orchestra-less) concert and a bunch of documentaries (generally in Dutch, but with English subtitles).

If you are a WT fan, you need this in your collection. If not, but the idea of symphonic metal sounds appealing, this is a very good way to try it out. Thoroughly recommended.
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on 10 August 2014
introduced to these by my son . took him to a gig on the recent tour and couldn't resist ordering this to help relive what was a fantastic live show. I can only assume you have some experience of within temptation if you are looking at their merchandise. this is a great live show and well worth the money . if you are just some random with a yearning to buy something then just jog on and buy it , there is not much in the same music bracket as this and sharons voice is 1 in a million.
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VINE VOICEon 22 November 2008
This is an amazing set and excellent value for money. There are two DVDs and two CDs.

The Black Symphony concert has Within Temptation backed by the Metropole Orchestra and is an amazing visual and audio spectacle. I particularly like the quiet mid-section where they play songs like Memories and the Swan Song.

One DVD has the Black Symphony concert and a few extras, the other DVD has yet another concert, this time without the Metropole, plus even more extras like interviews and videos. The second concert has some tracks, like Jane Doe, which were not played with the Metropole, so is also worth watching.

The two CDs are of the Black Symphony concert.

Many have said it already, but the Black Symphony concert at the Ahoy in Rotterdam is absolutely amazing. If you like rock music of any kind treat yourself to this as concerts don't get much better.
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on 28 February 2011
I must have watched the main concert of this package a dozen times by now, and it still amazes me every time. It's the most perfect blend of orchestral and rock music one could imagine, and I'm still kicking myself for missing the event when it happened. There is so much going on that it really is worth repeated viewing. For instance, I love watching the conductor, very calmly proceeding with his business each time the band goes into inferno mode.

The DVD package is extremely generous, with a double CD containing the entire sound track, and a second, orchestra-free WT concert packed in just for the heck of it. I'm not actually sure I have watched all the bonus materials yet - there's eight hours worth of footage, apparently.
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on 11 June 2015
Just dts... Which sounds ok, but if you have a nice 7.2 hd amp, and you're buying a blu Ray.... You expect dts hd sound! dts is expected on a did... But a blu Ray without hd sound is an offence and should be against the law! Apart from that, I'm happy :)
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VINE VOICEon 24 October 2008
Wow! On the 7 Feb 2008 Dutch gothic rock band, Within Temptation, took to the stage in Rotterdam to play to a 10,000 strong audience. Cameras were there to record the event, and the result was Black Symphony.

Backed by a 60 piece orchestra, supported by a choir, circus performers and with a couple of guest appearances thrown in, Within Temptation created a spectacle that few bands could live up to. Sharon's vocals are flawless, and her gothic presence commands the stage the entire time.

Containing 2 DVDs and 2 CDs this set is outstanding value for money, and is a must for WT fans.

Put you feet up, turn the volume up and enjoy the greatest show on earth!!!!
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on 10 February 2013
I have been a massive WT fan for years now and would recommend this Blu-Ray as a worthy addition to anyone's collection. I had already purchased the Black Symphony CD so had to get this. The show was filmed live with HD cameras so the picture and sound quality are both fantastic and amongst the highest I've seen. My home sound system is a Sony 5.1 with Canton speakers, every channel is alive with sound in this Blu-Ray and reproduction is faultless.

If you're a big fan of this group and have a decent home cinema system I can't think of a good reason not to get this - Highest recommendation
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on 16 December 2013
Excellent album. this gothic rock album is well worth a listen. A live album that, as you would expect, covers their best tracks. There are even more tracks on the DVD which is superb. Between each track the band speak to the audience but as I don't speak Dutch I have no idea what they are saying. It seems to go down well with the fans though.
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on 3 February 2014
The Black Symphony was a one off performance featuring a twenty piece choir and a forty piece orchestra. Where as with the cd you are aware that it is a live cd and not studio quality, the dvd is just fantastic. On a 5.1 channel set up it is superb. Sharon Den Adel's voice has a wide range and with an orchestral backing combined with the bands own instruments this is something I will watch again and again.
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on 3 June 2014
This is billed as a DVD which I bought because it was the cheapest way I could get Black Symphony I knew I would get 4 discs, what I didn't realise was that I would get not only the concert DVD, but also a second concert, loads of extras and the double CD of the Black symphony concert, fantastic.
The music is brilliant and deserves to be so much more widely known.
One of the best examples of putting rock music into a symphonic context. When done well it can really work and this does.
Buy whatever version you can but this 4 disc version must be the best value around.
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