at La Maroquinerie, Paris, France, April 22, 2023

CONCEPTION (Live at La Maroquinerie, Paris, France, April 22, 2023)
Photo: Séverine Peraldino

Of unexpected resurrection, Conception is probably the finest example. After four albums of unparalleled raw talent and inventiveness, treasured by every self-respecting Prog Metal fan, the Norwegian band disappeared from every radar at the turn of the millennium. 20 years later in 2018, the band made their return with an EP, My Dark Symphony, followed by the excellent State Of Deception.

Unfortunately, the pandemic disrupted this grand return for nigh on three years. Still, there’s always hope and at last, Conception stopped in Paris for a fantastic Saturday night the 22nd of April.

La Maroquinerie is a modest venue hidden away in the 20th arrondissement that offers a unique cosyness and proximity with the artists on stage. The audience displayed an impressive diversity with people coming from halfway across the planet to see the band, from Serbia or even Lebanon!

An Evening With Conception

In the friendliest of atmospheres, the show started with the classic “Grand Again” and “A Virtual Lovestory”, dissipating in everyone’s mind any baseless doubt about these musicians: they’re the most accomplished you can find! From Roy Khan’s vocals from another world to Tore Østby’s stratospheric soli, which he managed to make it look easy, Conception delivered the show everyone was waiting for. On backing vocals, the lovely Aurora Amalie Heimdal joined the band on the front of the stage for “The Mansion.” Her discrete presence throughout the show brought the exact amount of subtlety needed to highlight the songs.

The band achieved a new level of incredibility during the rendition of “A Million Gods:” a humbling experience for every guitarist in the room. To help the audience recover from this, “Silent Crying” and “Sundance,” beautiful acoustic ballads allowed everyone to sing along, which is usually difficult to do when you are trying to follow Roy Khan’s lead. This acoustic session also allowed Arve Heimdal, who until then was hiding behind his drums, to step to the front of the stage and interact with the fans as well.

“Under A Mourning Star” was another strong moment of the evening. The moments spent with Conception passed in the blink of an eye, and after a few jokes about being a “Viking Occitan” by Tore Østby, the heartfelt thanks of Roy Khan, it was already time to say goodbye with “My Dark Symphony” and “Roll The Fire.” To quote Roy Khan this was definitely the “definition of a good time.”

Conception – Setlist

  1. Grand Again
  2. A Virtual Lovestory
  3. Waywardly Broken
  4. No Rewind
  5. The Mansion
  6. A Million Gods
  7. Quite Alright
  8. Silent Crying (acoustic)
  9. Sundance (acoustic)
  10. Gethsemane
  11. Feather Moves
  12. Under a Mourning Star
  13. She Dragoon
  14. My Dark Symphony (encore)
  15. Roll the Fire (encore)


  • Séverine Peraldino

    Reviewer, interviewer and apprentice photographer for Metal Express Radio, Séverine comes from a small place in the Southern French Alps, near Grenoble. Her taste for classic Heavy Metal is a family heritage and after growing up listening to Iron Maiden, Dio, Metallica and Angra she expanded her horizons with almost every subgenre of Metal, from Power, to Prog, a little bit of Death and Black Metal. She mostly enjoys albums telling stories with originality. When she is not travelling around for concerts and festivals, you can find her reading a good book, or playing board games with friends.

    View all posts

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.