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This looks dull - 62%

Whalenut, June 28th, 2011

This is a good effort. With some changes it would be a great effort.

My first impression as I hold the album in my hands is “This looks dull”. The album has a one-in-a-million digital art cover; there is nothing wrong with it, it just looks incredibly boring.

The first track is a bombastic instrumental. It has a bit of a film score atmosphere, which is really nice. After this intro the actual songs begin, and it becomes clear that the singer is the main attraction on this album. She differentiates herself from the gothic operatic female voices that flood the genre. What a power! The music itself sounds like heavy metal with progressive and gothic influences, and a hint of folk (especially the mandolin pieces in some songs).

The problem with the music is that it’s too safe, and I miss some musicianship. Don’t get me wrong, the musicians can play their instruments, but they fail to impress. Most riffs sound familiar, the solo’s are functional but not amazing, the drums are ok but a bit dry. There is also some male choir during the choruses and such, but they are so low in the mix that they become almost inaudible. It’s a shame, because it would give the music a nice edge.

So, better riffs, better leads, better mixing, an interesting cover and this band would have a chance to build a nice career. They already have a singer of international class, but the rest of the band is very average. The songs grow on you after a while, which is a big positive point, and the album is enjoyable. But nothing more I’m afraid.

Solid but not outstanding enough to survive - 73%

kluseba, December 21st, 2010

I lately discovered this female fronted Symphonic Metal band from Belgium because I read about it in a forum. The main difference between this group and the average Nightwish or Within Temptation clone is that singer Ann van Rooy has a lot of power in her voice and doesn't try to sing as high pitched as many. I would comapre her voice to Magaly Luyten or maybe Floor Jansen. The other interesting factor about the group is that they are mostly heavier and more down to earth than many groups of the genre. There are some keyboards and some very great folk influences from time to time but basically the band doesn't forget to rock in a quite straight and yet sometimes progressive way.

My favourite songs on the record are the slightly folk influenced and rhythm orientated "The night awakens" as well as the very diversified "Entwined" that also has some folk approaches. Musically, the band does some progressive epics like "Roots of reality" that take their power out of the tranquilty while they also play some faster and rather modern songs like "Closure" or the typical and somehow boring piano ballads like "Angelheart" of the genre.

They all do this in a very solid way and are easy to appreciate but the problem is that they offer nothing new to a very recent and very popular genre. They mostly sound like "After Forever" minus electronical influences or like a softer version of "Beautiful Sin" plus some folk influences. I know that the band is actually on hold but if they will ever come back, they should focus on their forces that are the folk influences and the slightly progressive touch of their songs as well as the talent of their singer and they could get distinguished out of the masses. But by now, this solid record doesn't have enough efforts to stand its ground and peak out of the masses.