“The first time I saw THEATRE OF TRAGEDY I couldn’t believe my ears.
That in itself is testament to the magic of the music they created. It was a feast for the senses that satisfied the need for something different, something exceptional, yet left me hungry for more. The THEATRE OF TRAGEDY name alone is enough to bring two distinct memories to the surface, crystal clear and sharp as a blade….
… Witnessing, for the first time, what I thought was an over-hyped Norwegian goth metal band unleash music a world apart from anything I’d ever heard to a throng of rabid fans on the Out of The Dark Festival in 1996, my jaw on the floor by the end of the first song, my beer forgotten.
… Standing at a listening desk at a local record store the following day soaking up the debut album, tears stinging my eyes as ‘…A Distance There Is…’ played out. So very un-metal, so absolutely unbelievable that a piece of music could strike a chord with someone weaned on traditional metal, old school thrash, speed metal, and good old fashioned rock n’ roll.
Since then I’ve been a die-hard fan, part of a legion that has enjoyed one hell of a ride over the past 16 years.
From listening to Velvet Darkness They Fear over and over to the point of knowing every nuance, coming to grips with Raymond I. Rohonyi’s clean vocals on Aegis and beyond, finding worth in the band’s Musique / Assembly era, accepting their decision to have Nell Sigland replace Liv Kristine, and the band’s return to the doom/goth vibe that made them famous, THEATRE OF TRAGEDY became and remains an irreplaceable part of my personal soundtrack. I know without a shadow of a doubt that I’m not alone.
Given the Theatre’s stages of evolution since they opened up their world to us in 1995, it’s both impressive and tragic they’ve chosen to end it all while at the top of their game. Forever Is the World spoke of promise and bigger things to come; the band that launched an entire metal genre had returned to form, seemingly prepared to show the upstarts how it should be done. Rather than questioning and mourning the loss, however, the band deserves praise for going out on a high note.
You hold in your hands THEATRE OF TRAGEDY’s final farewell, a celebration of their legacy. Yet even as we lay a poetic rose for the dead in their honour, the truth is they aren’t truly gone. Their music has made them immortal, a cherished memory that will never fade.”