Death/Doom (early), Atmospheric Doom (Mid), Atmospheric Rock (later) from Netherlands
Formed in October 1989 by drummer Hans and Rene Rutten and vocalist Bart Smits, started as a Celtic Frost / Hellhammer-inspired death metal act before adding guitarist Jelmer Wiersma, bassist Hugo Prinsen Geerligs and keyboardist Frank Boeijen and changing their direction towards a more experimental, "atmospheric" approach. Issued their first demo recording, Moonlight Archer, in 1990 and issued in June 1992, their debut album 'Always...', which became a great success. Sadly, it would also be the last record to feature the aforementioned line-up, as musical differences led to the departure of Smits. Before and after their debut album, The Gathering recorded several promos/demo's/ e.p.'s. Some of them have never been released before (pre production demo recordings with vocalist Bart Smits, 6 songs for the 'Almost A Dance' album, 6 tracks). Together with several live recordings this album contains all material from The Gathering's early days, 1989 - 1993. Mastered and restored by Mike Wead (King Diamond / Mercyful Fate), booklet and cover art by Ivan S. Bragin and including liner notes and rare old pictures.