Thoughts on new stuff

Date:2019-02-09 11:21:19
Edited:2019-02-09 11:21:55
I normally wait till the end of the month and give reviews/opinions but I'll just post a few thoughts on new albums. Especially the ones that have been highly touted by Nos in particular. These are big albums and we need to dissect them hehe!

Soen - Lotus
Ok it's hands down their best album but I still don't really like it that much. At the moment I'd rate it around 6-6.5/10. I don't tend to gravitate towards moody darkness and melancholy so I immediately get off on the wrong foot with these guys. Having said that there are strong melodies vocally that please the ear immensely. The music I find mostly nondescript modern metal with some decent melodic riffs. If I listen to this album it would only be for the vocals which are superb. The music interests me much less. I think it's an ok to good album at the moment with a lot of depth and time investment needed. I just don't have the patience for this music to win me over..probably.

Within Temptation
Now this is a bit of a departure. Symphonic melodic metal is out and catchy mechanical heavy pop is in. I can imagine these songs on the soundtrack of a futuristic sci-fi franchise like Underworld or something like that. First of all Sharon has never sounded better. She sounds really damn good. Dunno if there's a few studio tricks going on but she sounds almost too perfect. The music sounds BIG and the production follows that course being sharp as a button. Guitars are thick and meaty and have that sort of industrial undertone that gives it that mechanical feel.

In the end you still need the songs and for the most part WT have done the business. 2-3 of the songs don't do a lot for me with the chief being Firelight. Snoozer that one. The lyrics have gotten a bit more socially aware as well. Moving well away from dreamy concepts on fantasy and love that they maybe had before.

Sure it's a really good listen but again in the end I'm not totally won over. The pace of the album is sorely lacking. Most songs meander along and lack diversity. You often feel like you're listening to the same song even though the title has changed. It's quite an emotional and ballsy album too. Like they want to move away from the old and in with the new like it or lump it. They've done a good job and I accept it and enjoy the songs, especially Sharon's vocals but in the end it's just a good album at the moment and nothing more. 7-7.5/10

I also played 3 Tremors finally. Meh..lot of screaming and not much melody. Production and overall "being metal" content is pretty good though. I love some of the pounding riffage here and there, but it seems they are in a battle with one another to constantly out scream each other! There's even a track called When the Last Scream Fades oddly enough. Problem is the last scream never does fade before another one comes along lol! I'm not going overboard with the hate like our resident non-metalhead Nos but yes this could have been so much better if they weren't trying to shatter glass on every line. I think if someone like a producer grabbed hold of them and told them look start singing there's a good true pounding heavy metal album somewhere in the there as they have the tools.

Herman Frank - Fight The Fear
This is actually slightly better than I was thinking but still not amazing. As expected Altzi is gargling glass on his way through the material but this is Accept style so we "accept" ahem these type of vocals. Riffs are the usual roaring stuff. If this said Accept on it no one would bat and eyelid. The highest I'd ever rate this is a 7/10.

Lord Divine - Facing Chaos
The first single was pretty nifty but the album as a whole is not great sadly. The ingredients are there with good riffs and production but the songs are mostly unmemorable. Trying hard to be Sym X but with loads of work to do. I think Guillaume is gonna jump down my throat with both feet but Diego sounds really quite annoying on this album. He sounds pretty good for a line or two and then starts to really use his growling heavy Dio vocals and it really starts to get painful. Trying way too hard. He's a great singer but he's really stretching it on this album. I doubt further plays can resurrect my interest in this. 5.5-6/10

Beast in Black - From Hell With Love
Easily the most fun thing this month so far. Sure it lacks substance but you can lose yourself in melodic 80s heaven with this. It's actually quite heavy in a couple of places with a few crunching riffs. As Nos says you have to raise an eyebrow and smile when the Greek dude starts doing his female vocals but it's all part of the charm. Just go with it even though it sounds wacky. Oh and I love their version of Killed By Death. Yer man even tries his best Lemmy voice and does a pretty good job. It's like an 80s disco metal party but in 2019! Fun times!

Just waiting for Avantasia, DT, Overkill, Find Me, Rhapsody of Fire and maybe a few death/thrash unknowns to see the month out in style.. Last in Line and Candlemass are very unlikely to help me with that predicament lol.

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