May 13th, Pendragon in de Boerderij, Zoetermeer.

I've seen Pendragon live 14 times so far so this was the 15th time I went to a concert by this wonderful band.

As part of the "everyone is a VIP" weekends, the band around master guitarist Nick Barrett had come to Zoetermeer for the first version of this. Pendragon is definitely one of my favourite bands and given the fact that I couldn't go to both nights I had to make a choice. It was not that difficult because although I think Love over Fear is a great album, it was played in its entirety the first night, it was clear to me that I had to go on Saturday because Not of this World, one of my favourite Pendragon albums, was played in its entirety.

The fact that the new mini-album North Star would be for sale also made a difference and with high expectations I travelled to Zoetermeer with two friends. The enthusiastic reports of the first evening made the already high expectations even clearer.

Now there was a lot to read in advance about the troubles that the band, and especially Nick and his wife Rachel, had to deal with in the past difficult years. A detailed explanation of the importance of the financial part of the entire enterprise could be read on facebook. There were many reactions to this, both supportive and critical. Fortunately, the room was very well filled on both evenings and a lot of merchandise was sold. I too couldn't resist the new T-shirt with custom image of Not of this World in a beautiful burgundy colour. (I'm not allowed to come home with another black shirt  😊 ) In this way it is possible to support the band a little more because they absolutely deserve it.

Immediately after the opening chords it was clear, there was a special vibe in the room. Nick played on his beloved guitar, a modified Fender, and that sounded nice and fresh and crispy as usual. Not of this world was then played in its entirety, the chemistry between band and audience was palpable. Very special. Still, I noticed that the sound of Nick's new favourite guitar, a Gibson, sounded much warmer and fuller, so the solos get a bit bogged down in the overall sound. We were quite far in the back and it was a pity because otherwise the sound was fine. Perhaps I am the only one who noticed this because my fellow visitors had little trouble with it. Probably a personal deviation that often bothers me, but the sound of a guitar can be so destinctive.

For a band that hasn't performed for over three years, they played a tight set and with a lot of passion. Clive Nolan and Peter Gee did what they always do and drummer Velasco stood out for his excellent playing and was allowed to show this again with a wonderful drum solo. Also nice were the excellent background vocals which is a real addition to the overall sound.

After Not of this World, a number of older and well-known songs followed, where it was especially noticeable that the tempo increased and songs such as Freakshow and Indigo showed the somewhat heavier side of the band. Personally, those are not really my favourite songs but the atmosphere was and remained great. After several encores, it was clear that all visitors were very enthusiastic and that there is still a very loyal following. That must have felt really great for the band and everyone in the band's entourage.

Personally, I thought this performance was very good but not the best I've ever seen from them but it's clear, Pendragon is still a top act and will hopefully give us new music for a long time to come.

I have often listened to the mini album North Star and my review is here :