Two more reviews I wrote have been posted at Sonic Cathedral recently! They cover the debut albums by two bands from neighboring countries in Western Europe, and my opinions on both CDs are vastly different.
First up is my review on Antalgia’s Perception of Reality. It’s difficult for me to comfortably compare this Spanish symphonic progressive metal band to more well-known female-fronted bands. Maybe a cross between Epica, Diabulus In Musica, Evergrey, and Seventh Wonder would be appropriate…? Anyway, it was also difficult for me to decide how to grade Perception of Reality. I enjoyed the dynamic instrumentation, which features a wide range of guitar techniques and keyboard sounds that altogether create evocative and mature soundscapes. Despite this, a number of songwriting and production miscues made me want to shake my head in bewilderment.
I had a much easier time writing about Astral Tears’ Hypnotic. It took me only three sittings of maybe 2 hours apiece to write the article. That’s quick for me! But I know the writing came easily because I’d been listening to this fantastic album almost non-stop for the past couple weeks. This melodic metal quartet from France combines gritty, powerful alternative metal with progressive traces, Middle Eastern influences, and entrancing vocals that bring to mind Lacuna Coil’s Unleashed Memories / Comalies era. Turkish-born singer Beyza has mastered the famous Arabian vocal technique, and this gives an authentic touch to the more straightforward metal anthems and sounds right at home with the more ethnic-flavored tracks.
Poetry-related news will come later this month! Until then, hope you’re all well – and Happy 4th of July to all of my fellow Americans!