The Gathering is a band from Holland. Before the current singer Anneke van Giersbergen joined they played doom metal with the old vocalist, Bart Smits. Back then the band really wasn't anything special, but after Anneke replaced Bart things really started rolling. Mandylion generated wide interest with its unique heavy yet peaceful style of metal/rock combined with excellent female vocals and warm soundscape, and the albums that followed, though not as heavy, established The Gathering style further while still experimenting and progressing more on each album.
On the album If_then_else the band started to dwell deeper into darker, heavier style again and continued that style on their mini-cd release Black Light District. Only time will tell what the next album, scheduled to appear sometime in the beginning of 2003, will be like, although the band has hinted it will continue on the more melancholic tracks established by the two previous releases.
The Gathering released five albums through Century Media but as the band apparently had some clashes with the label, future albums will be released through Psychonaut Records, a record label the band started to ensure total artistic freedom. In late 2002 Century Media released a live DVD "In Motion" without the band's authorization, which demonstrates pretty well the label's fine attitude towards them.
The DVD contains about 40 minutes of performance from Dynamo Open Air Festival 1996, another 40 minutes from Katowice, Poland in 1997 and music videos Liberty Bell and Leaves. The image quality is apparently very shoddy, as is the Dolby Digital 5.1 sound as the original audio (which is also available on the DVD) was recorded in stereo only. The only thing besides this on the DVD is The Gathering discography, from which Black Light District (released outside Century Media influence) has been tactfully omitted.
Their website is at http://www.gathering.nl. Psychonaut Records can be found at http://psychonautrecords.com.
Updated 03.09.2003: Added Souvenirs to the album list.