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(Self Release) Reviewed 30th July 2015
Christian Rockers Fireflight fronted by Dawn Michele are back with their latest offering. Due to a website glitch, we are having to do this review again, as the original seems to have zapped its way into cyberspace and not come back. Anyway, the band was formed in 1999, so they are well established on the music scene. After having been on a label that is a major player within the Christian Music scene, the band decided to self release this record, with the help of a crowd funding campaign. Anyway, the 12 tracks here are an awesome helping of Pop/Rock with touches of electronica, giving the listener a solid release to get their grubby paws on. There is a message within the lyrics, but the band do not overly preach the message. Furthermore, I myself admit that I am not an overly religious person, but I sure like good music when I hear it. There are standout cuts galore here, that will have you bouncing around like a demented lamb in a field full of dandelions. Listen to tracks like ‘I’ve Got The Power’, the power ballad ‘Here and Now’ and 'The Fallout' from a record chock full of nuggets. The band’s website is at www.fireflightrock.com
...recommended...8.75/10 (The Nugget)
(Self Release) Reviewed 29th July 2015
Equinoxem come from Argentina, a country that seems to be making a strong foray into the realms of female fronted Rock&Metal. ‘Nightgenesis’ is the band’s second full length album, and is the second rather good Symphonic Metal album I have had the pleasure of listening too today. We have operatic vocals compliments of Ashe Alder , with male vocals/growls from Matt Tallón. And let us not forget the Mystic Choir: Erika Van De Staaj, Natalia López and Roberto Castiglioni. ‘The Serpent Seal’ opens proceedings and is a mid tempo half decent number to kick things off. Following that, the music throughout the cd is mainly mid tempo and familiar Symphonic stuff and okay, it has all been done and heard before but nonetheless, it is all rather good. However, I did find myself losing interest a bit towards the end of the record, as I felt it was getting a little one dimensional and repetitive. The band’s website is here
... 8/10 (Dave)
(Self Release) Reviewed 29th July 2015
Electra Barakos was born in Los Angeles California, but raised in Athens, Greece. Influenced by her father who is a professional Bass player, Electra started her music career from a very early age. She started playing piano when she was 6 years old, wrote her first song and recorded it when she was 8, was involved in a professional children’s choir in Greece, performed for the Greek President, and attended a Performing arts high school in Athens. Now in 2015, this is the rather talented girl's debut full length release, offering the listener 11 tracks of rather good catchy Pop/Rock. This review is actually a re-review as the original seems to have disappeared from the website, but if you like the aforementioned style of radio friendly and inoffensive Pop/Rock music, offering tracks like 'Push Me', 'I Gotta Go' and 'Life's A Bitch', then this release is well worth checking out. Electra's website is at www.electrarocks.com/home.html
.. check it out, you know you should. Recommended to all and sundry out there..8.75/10 (The Nugget)
EMERA…’LEAP OF FAITH’
(Self Release) Reviewed 29th July 2015
The recent review that was done of Emera’s album ‘Leap Of Faith’ seems to have disappeared into cyberspace along with a couple of others, so here is a quickie. Emera hail from France and offer the listener 10 tracks of rather good Melodic Metal, with rather sweet female vocals. I would say that this is rather good , it being the band’s debut that was released towards the end of 2014. If you like your metal with a bit of ooommppphhh together with loadsa of melody, this is certainly worth checking out. The band’s reverbnation site is here
.. 8.75/10 (The Nugget)
(Stygian Crypt Productions) Reviewed 28th July 2015
The history of this Russian band under the mysterious name “Fferyllt” is deeply rooted in the autumn of 2003, when the keyboard player Dmitry Elissev had thought over making a musical project devoted to Western European paganism. The first line-up was gathered in spring 2007 and the band begun active creative work. In 2009 the label Stygian Crypt Productions released the debut album of the band. A year later in 2012 the same label released the second album 'Prediction'. In 2015 FFERYLLT finished work on the third full-length album that is reviewed here. The main features of the cd is the female voice of Ekaterina Godlevskaya, the male growl of М. Chikviladze, choirs and orchestral arrangements, also parts of Western European folk instruments (bagpipe, Irish flute) and more traditional for Symphonic music, the cello, violin, viola and double bass. And it all adds to a Folk Symphonic Metal masterpiece - 11 tracks (my version) of it, with the tracks ‘A Sprengisandi’ and the bombastic 'A Missing Page' being current favourites of mine. Actually, I think Folk Metal has generally become the domain of Beauty and the Beast Metal, with the female vocals now quite often accompanied by male growls. But if you like a good old shot of Folk Metal with your pint of mead, together with plenty of orchestration, pipes and the biz, get this album. Available at CDbaby amongst other locations and recommended… 9/10 (The Nugget)
EGO LIKENESS…’WHEN THE WOLVES RETURN’
(Metropolis Records) Reviewed 23rd July 2015
Ego Likeness is an American rock band from Baltimore, Maryland. They were formed in 1999 by artist Steven Archer and writer Donna Lynch. After a hatful of releases, 2015 sees the release of this, their latest epic album that was released mid July. There are 12 tracks here of what can best be described as catchy up tempo darkwave/industrial rock, which will have you bouncing around the floor in no time whatsoever. Despite being a so called metalhead, I do like all types of music, as long as there is melody, and this album is included, being yet another awesome ‘dance floor’ release from Donna and Steven. A host of goodies here including the atmospheric closing title track. Well worth looking into, a decent album…8.5/10 (Dave)
(Self Release) Reviewed 22nd July 2015
Fronted by Tomina Vincent, Flynn Effect is an alternative metal band from Brisbane, Australia. The brainchild of a video game composer, they draw influences from artists like HIM, Rammstein and Lacuna Coil to create a bold but catchy and accessible sound. This 13 track album was released a few months back and has been held up in the reviews pile due to Dave being unwell, but better late than never. Putting into the blender electronic, symphonic and heavy rock elements, these Australians have pulled it off rather well. There are some blistering nuggets on this album including the opener ‘Whispers’, second up ‘Flourescence’, the powerful sounding ballads ‘Petrichor’ and ‘The Runaway’, the Middle Eastern influenced and totally magical ‘Comatose’ and the heavy and symphonic ‘Pretender’. Other sources have described the album as "impressive” and “a wonderful electronica influenced symphonic alternative album that grows with every time you listen to it." We can second that! The band’s facebook is here
... 8.75/10 (Dave)
(Season of Mist) Reviewed 7th July 2015
Here is a rather good French band, their musical repertoire consisting of what we would call Industrial/Gothic Metal. Fronted at the mic stand by the rather awesome vocals of Justine Daaé , there are eleven tracks here of the previously mentioned Gothic Metal with Industrial influences thrown into the melting pot. And this is good bouncy stuff on this their 2nd full length, with some pounding catchy tunes such as 'De Guerre Lasse' and 'Chronocide' to annoy your neighbours when played loud :) The album thunders along as a whole rather nicely thank you without any soppy ballads, although final track 'Contretemps' does slow it down a bit introducing a bluesy feel. The album is well recommended... 8.75/10 (Rachel Louise Smith)
(Self Released) Reviewed 1st July 2015
Edenwar was born in January 2014, inspired by the best sounds of the Symphonic Metal and Epic bands of the last decade. The founders, Nicolas Dobernack from Switzerland and Anna Fiori from Mexico, set their first steps in the fascinating world that lays between Metal and Epic music, mixing innovating sounds with complex atmospheric soundscapes. There are 8 songs here that shows the great potential of the band. This album counts on the collaboration of great musicians including Timo Somers (Delain), Fabio Lione (Angra, Rhapsody of Fire and Kamelot) and Christian Vidal (Therion), that empowers the album quality with excellent results. And let us not forget the EdenChoir featuring 20 people from Mexico. Eight tracks of sheer symphonic bombastic power on this cd and not a bad track to be found. The band's website is at www.edenwarband.com
. This is very good and well recommended...9/10 (Dave)
(SoundAge Productions) Reviewed 30th June 2015
EDEN hail from Russia and this is another rather good band that has come our way. There are nine tracks of awesome mainly mid tempo Symphonic Metal from a band I know very little about, but they are a five piece fronted by Maya Azarova, well I know that much! All the tracks here offer up an excellent listening experience, with subtle folk elements popping up in tracks like 'Pray' and 'Butterfly'. Not a lot more to say really, except Eden are a band well worth checking out. The album can be purchased here, with a preview viewable here...8.5/10 (The Nugget)
(OneVision) Reviewed 24th June 2015
In order to make his musical ideas real, guitarist and singer/songwriter Ronny Schuster started to search for suitable musicians in the fall of 2011. He consulted his past contacts and found Bert Wolter (bass), Philipp ‘Nafta’ Dießl (drums) and Yves Merten (vocals, guitar) as his companions to lay the foundation for a future co-operation. All three had already crossed Ronny’s path in bands like Testimony, Fimbulthier and Wishmaster (a Nightwish cover band). They then got to know 17-year old singer Nina Irmscher and keyboard player Denny ‘Malle’ Meitsky, who completed the line up of Ebony Wall in December 2011. And in May 2015, their debut album was released and it is reviewed here. And what a corker from this German band! They ply their trade by way of Melodic Symphonic Power Metal featuring both male and female vocals with great use of keys. And if you need a band that describes rather well the above mentioned style of music, you have found them. The cd opens with the thundering 'Strangers In Hell' and there is no let up as the album continues through tracks like 'Creatures of the Night', the melodic 'Dance of the Dead', the catchy and pounding 'Like A Renegade' and the mid tempo 'Die In Flames'. Then there is the customary power ballad 'Everlasting Game' - wonderful. More info can be found here. And to add, I hear that they have dressed as priests while doing their live shows. Interesting!! - A well recommended album...9/10 (Dave)
ETERNAL SILENCE...'CHASING CHIMERA'
(Underground Symphony) Reviewed 9th June 2015
Eternal Silence was born in Varese in 2008 from an idea by Marika Vanni (voice) and Alberto Cassina (guitar and vocals) to which are added Alessio Sessa (bass) and David Massironi (drums). The band began its live activities in northern Italy initially proposing covers of bands like Nightwish, Epica, Within Temptation and After Forever. In 2011 they recorded their first Ep of 4 original songs titled 'Darkness and Regret' that was published in 2012. The band galvanized by the great response decided to continue writing their own songs, until 2013 when they joined the studio to record their debut album entitled 'Raw Poetry'. The album then immediately gets the interest of the label Underground Symphony and in the same year Davide Rigamonti joined the group as lead guitarist. Now in 2015, we have the pleasure of their 2nd album 'Chasing Chimera', and what a jolly good record it is, offering up an abundance of good Symphonic stuff - a mixture of Heavy Metal, Orchestral epicness and an amazing vocal duo (featuring the vocals of Daniele Scavoni from Spellblast!) Most of the tracks run it at around the 4-5 minute mark, but the epic 'Hell On Earth' runs in at a bombastic 7+ minutes. As previously mentioned, this is great stuff and the album sure deserves one's attention. Their facebook is here
.. 9/10 (The Nugget)
FALSE HOPE FADES... S/T EP
(Self Released) Reviewed 3rd June 2015
False Hope Fades, born in late 2012, proudly hails from the city of Chicago. They are four unlikely characters who have united to create something soulful, unexpected, and genuine. Rosie delivers her twisted marriage of mighty melodic vocals and killer gruesome growls with regal determination. Kham's guitar saturates their sound with a heaviness and groove unique to modern metal, while Johnny empowers the group with punchy, heavy riffs that set their sound unequal to most. Brian's drumming guides the band with energy, skill, and unrelenting power. And if you do not believe me, then give this 5 track EP a listen. Opener 'Coward' is the ideal showcase to what this band offers the listener, and I would imagine they are a blast live. The melodic 'Clean' keeps the momentum going as does 3rd track in 'Break'. 'Wake Up' introduces Rosie's growls, while the mid tempo closer 'Words' ends this little album. This is rather good... 8/10 (Dave)
(Bernett Records) Reviewed 3rd June 2015
Evolvent fronted by the majestic vocals of Emma Elvaston, is a band from France and this is another good Symphonic/Gothic Metal album that has come our way. There are some good Melodic Symphonic tunes here coupled with the occasional ballad or two that are jolly well done. We also get to hear subtle deathly growls, but these are never over done. This is a record that is well worth checking out. The band's website is at www.evolvent-band.com, and I want to add that although this is a brief review, it is a rather good album. Fave tracks including the symphonic pounding 'Love Doesn't Love Me', the ballad 'We Are' and the slow to mid paced title track - a well recommended cd... 8.75/10 (Dave)
(Self Released) reviewed 22nd May 2015
Elvellon is a Symphonic Metal band from Moers, North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany. Through a combination of orchestral sound, hard riffs and the extraordinary voice of front woman Nele, the five musicians hit right at the heart of the listener with the five tracks on this very good EP. The standard of music being thrown at us here at Ravenheart at the moment is rather awesome to say the least, and this EP is of no exception. All the cuts here are gems, the tracks 'My Wings' and 'Oraculum' being favourites, so quite simply, if you are into Symphonic Metal, then get it - check their bandcamp site here
... 9/10 (The Nugget)
FOREVER STILL...'SAVE ME' EP
(Self Release) Reviewed 1st May 2015
Save Me is part II of Forever Still's concept album. Their 'Scars EP' was the dark and dreary beginning and now the main character is moving on to the next stage. There are three tracks here, all of which are rather awesome. Fronted by vocal powerhouse Maja Schønning, 'Awake The Fire' opens the EP in bombastic fashion and immediately tells me that this band is heading places. Next up 'Breathe In' shows no let up, being a heavier number but coupled with the band's trademark melodies, while closer 'Save Me' is just simply magical! This EP is the second of three digital EPs that will eventually end up as one physical full length album later in 2015 and we here cannot wait. This Danish Band who I am sure would quite easily set the USA on fire with their music, could and should be the next best thing, so keep your eyes and ears peeled. Their bandcamp is here - support independent music, as this EP has bowled me over!!!... 9/10 (Dave)
FAKE THE ATTACK...'STRANGER TIMES'
(Gray Records) Reviewed 23rd April 2015
Fake The Attack come from the county of Hampshire here in the UK, and this is the band's first new music since their 2011 'You Call This Freedom' EP. Fronted by Ashlyn Marshall, this CD is an energetic and diverse work bristling with ideas, embracing sparkling synths and subtle electronics along the way. There are 11 tracks of catchy pop/rock to embrace and it is all rather good. The release is consistent and nothing within the 11 tracks really disappoints. Okay, it may not appeal to the metalheads out there, but by and large this is damn good and ultra commercial in the process. If you enjoy acts like Paramore, Fireflight, Eowyn, The Material and the like, this should be right up your alleyway. The band can be checked out here... nice one - release date was 8th June but it has been postponed for the time being... 8.5/10 (The Nugget)
END OF THE DREAM...'ALL I AM'
(Self Released) Reviewed 23rd April 2015
Back in January in 2014, I reviewed a 4 track promo EP that was sent to me by Dutch band End Of The Dream. The EP was rather good and now, in 2015, I have the pleasure to review the band's debut full length effort. Anything from Holland grabs my attention and no doubt the attention of many others too, and this band fronted by Micky Huiijsmans is of no exception. It all kicks off with the awesome and melodic 'Follow The Angels', a 6 minute epic that featured on the EP, and this number grabs you by the short and curlies and immediately gives the listener an idea as to what to expect on this release. Next up 'Away' is equally as good, great mid tempo chorus and superb vocals! 'Colder' exibits Evanescence influences, while the epic and bombastic 7 + minute 'Shadows Embrace', maintains the awesome momentum that this EP gives the listener. 'Collide' is a slower and an emotionally charged number, vocally Micky sounding a little like Amy Lee, which is not a bad thing at all, while 'All I Am' the title track with its catchy chorus, is another great tune with an acoustic undercurrent. The last three numbers do not disappoint, 'Through The Dark', the 9 + minute epic 'Dark Reflection' with its progressive tendancies and closer the ballad 'Gone', all continue to show the awesome promise this band shows with this release. In summary, this album is going to appeal to a wide range of fans whether they support female fronted rock/metal music or not. There are Evanescence influences appearing at times throughout the album, not surprising really bearing in mind that Evanescence did release a track called 'End Of The Dream', but these influences are not a bad thing and I like it. The band's website is here
... well recommended.. 9.25/10 (Dave)
(Self Release) Reviewed 1st April 2015
Embersland is a six piece Melodic Metal band from Barcelona with male (harsh and clean) and female vocals, and this the band's second album is yet another good recording to come the way of Ravenheart Music. The vocal duties are shared between May, Will and Xavi and this 9 track album offers up quite a variety for the listener to enjoy. I must say that I myself enjoyed this album, with the epic 9+ minute opener 'Sunrise (Part II) being one of my favourite numbers, 'Sunrise (Part I)' by the way being the closing track on their debut release 'Sunrise'. 'Second up 'Closer' is a powerful but punchy tune and sets the scene for what is to follow. The Symphonic 'WTF...Fuck Off' is not a disgruntled overpaid Chelsea soccer player (sorry Chelsea fans) talking to a referee, but is an interestingly titled track and a good one too, and being a tough N London girl, offers up solid proof that this band talk my language :) Other highlights are a plenty including the slower and rather more atmospheric 'Where Are You', the ballad 'Deadweight' and the wonderful 'Be There For Me'. It is my pleasure to review music this good - the band's website is here
.. 9/10 (The Nugget)
(Self Release) Reviewed 11th March 2015
EVYLTYDE is a female-fronted British metal band based in and around the London area, who bring the sound of traditional classic metal into the modern age, with a mix of killer riffs, searing power chords and melodic vocals!!! Established in August 2013 by Danny Merton (guitars) and Hannah Delany (vocals), after both were recruited for a project to reform a cult UK metal band from the 80s, the band throw at us on this release some classic metal with melody that will leave you screaming for more. Indeed, there are some classic cuts galore here from the opener 'Down Below', the riff tastic 'Kick You Down' and 'Chastity', the acoustic based 'Disappear' and the metallic 'Living To Die'. I have heard a lot about Evyltyde on the underground music scene here in this part of England (Essex), and listening to this release confirms all that I have heard. The band's website is here
- this is rather good me thinks, played with lots of venom!... 8.75/10 (The Nugget)
FATE PREVAILED...'BLUE SKIES BURN RED'
(Self Released) Reviewed 3rd December 2014
Fate Prevailed is a six-piece metal band from Ontario with a full and addictive sound. Combining melodic female vocals with heavy instrumentation and screaming vocals, the band appeals to a wide variety of listeners. The music is progressive, technical, and changes with every song. Although this album is being classed as an EP with only 5 tracks, it runs in at around 37 minutes, so could even be put into the full album category. Apart from the opener 'The Hunt Is On' that runs at just a little under five minutes, the remaining four numbers all run at over 6 minutes with the epic 'Merciless' well over 10 minutes. So one gets their monies worth here. Vocally, Ariane Ganga reminds me at times of Vicky Johnson from UK band WINTER IN EDEN. This album is tuneful and rather good, and despite the harsh vocals, they are not over the top, the clean female vocals working well with the mainly death male vox. Coming from different musical backgrounds each member of the band brings new life to the music as they come together. Dark lyrical themes, raging solos, and haunting melodies make Fate Prevailed a band one needs to hear. And to add, closer 'Surrounded' is a fave of mine - great keys/guitar interplay. The band's website is at www.fateprevailed.com
, and to be honest, this release is well recommended... 8.75/10 (Dave)
FOREVER STILL...'SCARS' Single/EP
(Self Release) Reviewed 19th November 2014
Forever Still hail from Denmark and their rather good 'Breaking Free' EP was reviewed by us here in July 2013 (doesn't time fly?) Now it is time for a little three track goodie called 'Scars' from this very good young Danish band fronted by Maja Schønning. And you know what?, this band is knocking on the door of the premier league. If you like bands like Firefly, Paramore and Evanescence, then this should be right up your alleyway. The opener 'Scars' is by far the heaviest track here but is loaded with melody. 'Once Upon A Nightmare' follows and is a heavy melodic offering, the kinda song that would have Evanescence/Paramore fans in music heaven. Closer 'Miss Madness' is an awesome power ballad to end this awesome EP. The EP in-fact is the first of three digital EPs that will eventually end up as one physical full length album in the spring of 2015. It can be downloaded directly from the bands website: www.foreverstill.dk
, where the band let their fans pay what they want for it. Well worth it I think!... 9/10 (Dave)
(Free download - self release) Reviewed 27th October 2014
I may be the pretty innocent looking Essex girl, but when it comes to my music, the heavier the better. I picked up on Edenian via facebook and this EP is available via free download, the link is a little later in this review. This Melodic Death/Gothic Metal band is a beauty & the beast band from Ukraine and this is rather cool to my ears. I so wanted to review it, and when the gaffer Ravenheart Dave said go ahead, I was in heaven. There are five tracks here, three originals and two covers. Fans of bands like Draconian and the like will lap this monstrously heavy record up, but having said that, the angelic female vocals courtesy of Valerie Chudentsova add a little sanity to proceedings. Meanwhile Max "Eternal Tom" Molodtsov growls maintain the ample dosage of heaviness. The two covers are curious but very good...'Snow White' (Xandria) and 'Eternal' (Paradise Lost). For now the band consists of two main members, the aforementioned Max "Eternal Tom" Molodtsov & Valerie Chudentsova. They use hired musicians to perform live shows. Edenian say they play for passion - not for fashion! Good on them, well recommended - 8.75/10 (Natalie Gold)
FLIGHT OF FIRE...'SHATTER THE SKY'
(Self Release) Reviewed 1st October 2014
Four rather vivacious and skilled women explore the combinations of upbeat hard rock, emotional folk rock, and complex symphonic rock that is Flight of Fire. With influences ranging from acts such as Led Zeppelin, Joan Jett and The Blackhearts, Rush, Dream Theater, Journey and Heart amongst many others, this is a rather good release. The vocals of Maverick are totally spellbinding, and this is showcased no better than on the powerhouse of a bluesy belter, the 6 minute 'Diary Of A Broken Heart'. The band can also go Progressive Metal with the number 'Illusion', while the atmospheric ballad 'Always' is rather good, Then we have the folky camp fire acoustic feel to 'I'm Lost Without You', again another rather cool vocal performance from Maverick on this track, who together with the rest of the band shines throughout, also adding that Tanya Dmuchowski is one damn good guitarist. The members of Flight of Fire feel passionate about influencing the music industry away from music that demeans women. They hope to follow in the footsteps of their idols – Joan Jett, Janis Joplin, Ann & Nancy Wilson and Stevie Nicks, and to make their own impact, inspiring girls not only to take up instruments and rock in a male-dominated field, but to live more emboldened, intrepid lives. And that is what Ravenheart Music is all about! Their website is here - this release is rather pleasing to my ear, offering a nice mix of music from heavier tracks to rather more lighter moments ... 8.75/10 (Natalie Gold)
THE EDGE OF PARADISE...'IMMORTAL WALTZ'
(Self Release) Reviewed 30th September 2014
The Edge Of Paradise is a Hard Rock/Metal band from the USA, and this is their rather tasty latest release that will soon be appearing on the shelves of your local music store. Fronted by Margarita Monet this is a rather good and at times quirky 8 track release. Kicking off with the feisty and quirky 'It's My Show', this track showcases the awesome and at times rather flirtatious vocal style of Margarita. And the quirkyness continues with next number 'Immortal Waltz', a kinda fair ground feel to these opening numbers, so far and so good! The following numbers 'Rise For The Fallen' and 'In A Dream' are great melodic numbers and if you keep still during these tracks, then you must have a serious problem! The album continues in fine fettle with tracks like 'Ghost' that reminds me a little of Queen - a great chorus!, the catchy 'Break Away' with the storming powerhouse vocals of Margarita and closer 'Goodbye'. Produced by Michael Wagener (Van Halen, Megadeth, Metallica, Ozzy...), every track here is a good un and I personally like this record very much. The band's website is at www.edgeofparadiseband.com/
... 9/10 (Dave)
EYES OF VERONA...'EX-VOTO'
(Inspur Music) Reviewed 9th September 2014
EYES OF VERONA is a high energy alternative sounding rock band from France and I do like receiving music like this, as it makes a welcome change from the Gothic Symphonic stuff that often comes our way. Heavily influenced by both English and American contemporary rock scenes, the band draws its inspirations especially from their European roots. Fronted by a young lass called Sophie, I must say that this is another excellent album that we have received here at Ravenheart. The band initially released the EP 'Chapter 1: The Fight' and the remaining part of the trilogy is here with this album. The opener 'Chapter 2: Trust' is a brief instrumental before 'Restless Nights' explodes from your speakers, a melodic rocker with a progressive undercurrent. A rather good start and it continues with 'Our Little Friend', a catchy alternative sounding rocker with crossover potential if you want my honest opinion. There is some further good stuff here including tracks like the pounding 'Renovatio', the catchy 'Annie', the brief haunting 'Chapter 3: Glory', the hi tempo 'Free the Swan', the acoustic 'My Odyssey', the awesome 'The End Of Babel' and the powerful and atmospheric 'Hare and Hounds'. Overall a very good effort from this French band...8.75/10 (Dave)
FROM LIGHT ROSE THE ANGELS...'FROM LIGHT ROSE THE ANGELS' EP
(Self Release) Reviewed 8th September 2014
This band fronted by VK Lynne immediately grabbed my attention. This lass is well established within the scene, and when a band lists their 'genre' as Electro-Symphonic Pop Rock, then I become very interested. We have 7 tracks running in at just around the 30 minute mark. This may not seem a lot, but I must say that this is an all killer no filler record, and is continually being played here at the Towers. VK has an awesome powerful voice and this is well showcased here, just listen to opener 'The Grey Returns' as an example. The final track by the way being an acoustic version of this number. And I must say that the sound of FLRTA is very European indeed, and you will not hear any complaints about that here. 'Selfish' is an awesome pounding rocker, while 'BloodRoses' is rather cool melodic power ballad. Overall, this release is damn good and I find little to fault, so check out their website here: www.fromlightrosetheangels.com/
- totally awesome! 10/10 (Dave)
(Self Released) Reviewed 19th August 2014
I know I have said this before and I will say it again. Every now and again a band comes along that totally blows my mind. This time it is 4th Circle from France. Fronted by the angelic and sexy (if I may say so) vocals of front lady Audrey Adornato, this band means business. Released in 2013 I believe, 'Lifetimes' is an awesome blast of Symphonic Metal that has taken the wind right out of my sails. Opener, the appropriately titled 'Opening', is a track of pure unadulterated cinematic proportions, what a start. This then leads us into the second track 'Past Isn't Everything' which with its progressive undercurrent is totally bombastic and rather catchy to boot. Leaving me breathless, we come to track number three, 'The Beginning' being a Power Ballad to beat all Power Ballads - a total blast. 'Neverending Madness' is a Symphonic Metaller's wet dream, with the first four numbers from this album offering 20 + minutes of pure heaven for the female fronted music fan, and it does not let up there. The album continues in a similar vein and I find very little to fault within the ten jewels that make up this recording. Just listen to the piano led ballad 'Eternal Stream', the melodic thumper, 'Wild As I am' with it's subtle background growls, the Symphonic sounding tracks 'Path To Eternity' and the grandiose 'One Blink', closing with the duo, the operatic bouncer 'Stopping The Time' and the rather good 'Breathing Again'. Having said all that, everything on here is damn awesome, this band is dynamite and I urge everybody to check them out at their website: www.4th-circle.com/home
... 9.75/10 (Dave)
The FALL OF EVE...'CALLS FROM THE HORIZON' EP
(Self Release) Reviewed 8th August 2014
Here we have a corking 7 track EP from Scottish Band The Fall Of Eve. This is rather good Melodic/catchy Symphonic Metal with the emphasis on the Symphonic and the vocals of Laura Tracey go down rather well me thinks too. The vocal style not of the Operatic variety, mainly a Pop/Rock style. Yes, I admit I do rather like this record and the tracks 'Original Sin' and 'Shields Of Faith', are two such tracks that lovers of this style of music I am sure will rather like. Indeed, this whole little effort is epic, bombastic and extremely good, and the band on this showing will surely soon get the call. Great stuff and well recommended from the Ravenheart team. Their Facebook is here and the album can be purchased from iTunes, Amazon UK etc.. 8.75/10 (Dave)
FRIGHT NIGHT...'LIFE ETERNAL'
(Self Release) Reviewed 6th August 2014
The standard of music that comes our way continues to keep us here at Ravenheart Towers happy but busy. The only issue we have is poor old beleaguered Ravenheart Dave trying to keep up with it all, hence myself popping into HQ and doing this review myself. Anyway, the latest addition to the reviews rosta here is Frightnight from Moscow. Having already released the rather good 'The Play Of Pain', they now have entered the fray again with this little 9 track epic called 'Life Eternal'. This is Gothic by the true sense of the words, featuring dual male/female vocals - Gothy, dark but clean male vox are delivered by Alexey Ovsiyenko and female vocals by Marianna Lukyanova, just as they did on 'The Play Of Pain'. These two interacted really well then, and the good interplay work continues here. Some great tracks on this recording including the opener 'Cherry Blossom', the mid paced pounding 'Infernity', the brooding 'Fatality' and the impressive near 7 minute 'Galatea'. Do yourselves a favour and check the band out at their Facebook here. Rather good throughout me thinks! 8.5/10 (Rachel Louise Smith)
ENEMY OF REALITY...'REJECTED GODS'
(FYB Records) Reviewed 31st July 2014
And yet another awesome cd steamrollers its way into Ravenheart Towers. Enemy of Reality come from Greece, another nation emerging onto the scene - 'REJECTED GODS' being the band's debut album and it features 10 mind-blowing bombastic tracks of Symphonic Metal, with a few Progressive influences thrown into the mix. I keep hearing that the Symphonic Metal scene is becoming over crowded with bands, but to be honest, when it is this good, I don't give a damn. The record consists of powerful modern riffs and melodic progressive solos that raise the listener’s interest without becoming too boring. The chorus parts are quite intense and the operatic vocals are powerful and emotional at the same time. And with guest performances from the likes of Ailyn Giménez (Sirenia), Mike LePond (Symphony X), Androniki Skoula (Chaostar) and Maxi Nil (Jaded Star, ex-Visions of Atlantis), you know this is going to be something a little special. The album includes a 4-track sequence, based on the Greek myth of Orpheus & Eurydice. However, in this version the story is narrated by one of the Maenads (female followers of Dionysus) who tells a story of love and tragedy, while at the end of the myth it turns out that she was among the women that killed Orpheus, as they ripped him apart with their own hands. In more detail, sixth track in, ‘Her Descending Ghost’ begins the story with the tragic death of Eurydice by snakebite, shortly after her wedding. ’The Bargaining’ is about the descent of Orpheus to the Underworld, where he faces Hades in an attempt to claim back his wife’s soul. On ‘Grief Divine’ Orpheus starts ascending back to Earth with Eurydice quietly following him, while in a moment of mistrust and agony he ignores the only warning of Hades that was not to look back at her before they have both reached the surface. Finally, on ‘Torn Apart’ Orpheus returns to Earth alone, where he mourns the loss of his wife for a second time. At that time, he gets surrounded by the Maenads who, out of jealousy and anger, tear him apart limb from limb and throw his head and lyre in the river Evros. Nothing here to fault, with highlights galore, although I do particularly like the catchy and commercial sounding 'Lifeless Eyes'. Their Facebook is here, this record is damn good and another awesome addition to the music fan's cd collection... 8.75/10 (Dave)
ENK ELINATION...'TEARS OF LUST'
(Self Release) Reviewed 7th July 2014
Enk Elination (enkeli - meaning Angel in Finnish) is a British band fronted by a Finnish lass Elina Siirala, who is herself a former opera singer. She moved to London in 2008 and fell in love with the power and performance of rock and metal. In 2012 she started working with a guitar player Shadow Venger, who’s previous band Empyreal Destroyer was voted as the best unsigned band of 2007. Having myself been familiar with Enk Elination for a while now, all I will say is they are damn good, this cd is well worth the money and I am even reviewing this while taking some time out from Ravenheart and relaxing. The music is I suppose you would call a toned down Symphonic Metal style, with the angelic and perfect vocals of Elina nailing it to a tee. I could hear this girl on the West End stage. To be honest, all the tracks here are above par, not a duff one to be found. I cannot really fault this release, so check out their Facebook here and go make what will be a worthy purchase... 9/10 (Dave)
EPICA...'THE QUANTUM ENIGMA'
(Nuclear Blast) Reviewed 14th May 2014
Epica are back with a bang and have upped the ante yet again with this their latest release!! And Epica as always are totally Symphonic, Heavy, Melodic and Bombastic, mixing their signature heavy riffing to good effect. This album has literally blown my mind apart and is totally amazing, period!! And the choir basically offers up a complete backing vocal package. I am not even sure where to start here - leading lady Simone is on top form, we have the occasional growls from guitarist Mark Jansen and drummer Arien van Weesenbeek, and as for the choral arrangements, I have no words to explain the awesomeness of the choir. Just listen to songs like 'The Essence Of Silence', the pulsating 'Sense Without Sanity-The Impervious Code', the amazing 'Reverence-Living In The Heart' and the catchy 'Omen-The Ghoulish Malady', these being just four massive songs from an album chock full of awesomeness. This is not a huge review for such a huge record, it does not have to be - this is simply Epica's career best, enough said - simply astounding and breathtaking.. 10/10 (Dave)
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