Sylvaine / Euphrosyne @Temple Athens 3/3/2023


“loosing touch with the ground…”

It may be just a figure of speech but sometimes it is true, the only medicine against the sorrow is music. With that in mind the concert of SYLVAINE in Athens seemed to carry a therapeutic relation and functioned beneficially since  black conquers everything after the unspeakable massive tragedy of the deadly train crash in Tempe, Greece. Sylvaine managed to create a stunning atmosphere with their unique performance. EUPHROSINE was the ideal opening act on this great evening.

“entering the void / love left unspoken…”

So, in the shadow of the tragedy only a few people were outside the venue at 20:30 when the doors opened and you could feel the numbness in the air. At 21:15 Euphrosyne got on stage and immediately took us by the hand into their unique music world and they dedicated their show to the victims of the massive train tragedy in Tempe. Kicking off with “Pale Days” was kind of painful though since a day before they released a video with the acoustic version of a song and that was also dedicated to the victims. The lyrics are salt in the wound so hopefully we heard the distortion version, this way we could hide the tears easily.

“childhood / turn to dust…”

Last time I saw them live was in early December when they had the release show for their debut EP “Keres” but they were kind of cagey. Now they were much more confident and everything worked fine for them with no sound issues or other technical small problem that can spoil your performance. Their atmospheric post black metal created the ideal soundtrack for the cold (by all means) night. All of them were great on guitar, drums and bass while Efi Evangelinou had the chance to show her different faces as she was moving from desperate screams to melodic whispering while her kinesiology was giving them an extra touch of theatricality.

video Euphrosyne live:

“everything must come to an end…”

So, it was somewhere there at the end of their show I realized they were on stage for forty minutes already which clearly confirms what I was saying at the beginning of this live report. But there is no cure that lasts forever, the music from the Dj during the thirty minute long break (as they were preparing the stage for the headliner) made me feel uncomfortable once more, especially when I heard some songs from… Dead Can Dance.

At 22:30 the band from Norway got on stage and I cant recall any other time that the headliner is on stage and the Greek fans don’t start to scream. The intro ends and then “Earthbound” from Wistful album kicks off, a song that is a typical composition of Kathrine Shepard’s music universe as it contains not only the eerie atmosphere but also the ethereal patterns. Then “Nowhere, Still Somewhere” from her latest release didn’t leave any doubt that this would be a special music night.

“Will the ache ever ease up…”

When Sylvaine talked to the fans for the first time she seemed really surprised with the absolute silence in the venue, “oh wow, you are so quiet!” she said but no one really could be loud although it was hard to explain. Talking about the fans I must say that the venue wasn’t packed but it was definitely far from that empty venue some years ago at Death Disco when she played in front of forty people in total.

Her music is a special blend of post metal that carries two different faces, the minimal goth approach from one side and the black metal outbursts from the other side. What I like on her is that she avoid some mainstream tricks as she prefers to follow her own path, no surprise she seems to feel deep inside her every note she brings to us. That’s why she didn’t have any problem to play the nine minute long “Abeyance” and then back to back the eleven minute long “Fortapt”. Everything she played from that moment was special but if I had to choose only one moment that would be “Eg Er Framand” that left us with a bittersweet taste that not even the light rain outside could wash away…

video Sylvaine live:

Sylvaine set list:

Intro / earthbound / nowhere but still somewhere / abeyance / fortapt / thrjar / I close my eyes / mono no aware / a ghost trapped in limbo / morklagt / eg er framand

® live report/photos/video: Konstantinos Mindcrimek Vlachos