Netherlands and more

Blog about life in Holland (and a lot of other stuff)

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Sky is no limit Apr 11, 2016

Igor Abakumov, also known as Mr. Raskolnikov, an ex-member of Radiolaria, has shared some new material with me: tracks that were recorded for his own solo project called Zapreschennaya Akustika ("Forbidden Acoustics"). Even though it's a home recording and perhaps you can't really appreciate the Russian lyrics, the musical aspect seemed quite interesting to me.

So far four new tracks are available, all of them pertain to the sky for some reason:

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The castlerun, second edition Apr 9, 2016

This spring is full of sporting activities. First aikido (I hope my certificate with nice Japanese characters is already on its way), now a half marathon.

As I mentioned, the event was to happen on March 28, on the second day of the Easter, which is a public holiday here in Holland. It's the second edition of De Halve van de Haar, and half marathon (21.1 km) was the longest distance available.

The medal is actually grey, it's the light that tints it.

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Shodan: 11 years on the way Mar 27, 2016

Last weekend, on March 19, 2016, the author of these lines has qualified for the first dan Aikido Aikikai.

The black belt.

Exactly 11 years ago I've entered the dojo of Rudik Manukyan (in Russian), who had second dan Aikikai (the original branch of aikido stemming from its very founder) at that time. Thanks to his lead I've grown from naught to second kyū in three year's time, and left for Holland shortly thereafter.

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Dream Theater presents The Astonishing in Theater Carré Mar 4, 2016

The band Dream Theater is absolutely legendary. They are considered the founders of the progressive metal genre, and each of them alone is equally legendary. If you doubt that, just watch their Instrumedley video; not many musicians in the world are capable of playing something like that.

The band was presenting their new album The Astonishing in the Theater Carré in Amsterdam on February 23rd.

Dream Theater in Carré. Before the start of the show.

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Austria, Sölden, snowboard Feb 12, 2016

I've been lucky to have had a good deal of wintersport this season, as well as to come back in one piece.

Our destination was chosen to be the Austrian Sölden, also located in Tyrol like Ischgl where I'd been a year ago.

Sölden. Tyrol. Alps.

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A Winter Evening with Stream of Passion — 2015 Jan 19, 2016

If you think I pay too much attention to Stream of Passion, I can tell you I've seen a man on the show for whom that show of the band was the 94th.

Moreover, with the ticket price of €14 it would be stupid not to go.

So just before the New Year's eve, on December 27th, Marcela Bovio & Co played a traditional winter gig.

Anneke van Giersbergen (clenching her fist) and Marcela Bovio.

Just like two years ago the show was hosted by a small and cosy club in Utrecht called Tivoli de Helling. The concert featured an impressive list of guest singers:

  • Anneke van Giersbergen (The Gathering, The Gentle Storm)
  • Lisette van den Berg (Scarlet Stories, Epic Rock Choir, Karmaflow)
  • Dianne van Giersbergen (Xandria)
  • Merijn van Haren (Navarone)
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