Review by Tony Cannella
“Urban Fantasy” is the title of the debut full-length album from France’s Unseelie. The band plays symphonic gothic metal which is of a very high quality. The band is an excellent example of why the female fronted metal world is thriving. Drawing from influences such as Lacuna Coil, Tristania and The 3rd and the Mortal, Unseelie has managed to create an epic, multi-tiered debut.
“Urban Fantasy” is an ambitious album that is divided into three sections the first is Biocide which features the first three songs “Strangers”, “Quantify Your Soul” and “The City Feeds on You”. Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World is the title of the next section and begins with the excellently melodic and melancholic “Frontier” This song goes through tempo changes and there is a big bombastic feel to it which is really cool. “Hunters’ Game” has a cool straight forward groove to it. Lead vocalist Anne-Emmanuelle Fournier turns in a breath taking vocal performance as she contributes both clean and extreme vocals. She uses her clean voice predominantly but that makes her extreme style more effective when she chooses to go that route. After “The White Passenger” and “Of Water and Dreams” the final section Heirs of the Fall is next. This duo of songs and the bonus track “Closer to Apotheosis” closes out the record. “Prometheus’ Pain” and the 7 ½ minute “Beauty Is Our Only Saviour” is epic storytelling.
Unseelie is certainly a promising band which has a lot to offer its listeners. There is something very Avant Garde about “Urban Fantasy” which – for me – was a big part of its appeal, it is definitely something different from the norm, but not totally different as to alienate mainstream metal fans.
Rating – 85/100
- Quantify Your Soul
- The City Feeds On You
- Hunters’ Game
- The White Passenger
- Of Water And Dreams
- Prometheus’ Pain
- Beauty Is Our Only Saviour
- Closer to Apotheosis (bonus track)
- Anne-Emmanuelle Fournier – All clean & extreme vocals
- Marc Chevallereau – Lead, rhythm, folk & bass guitars, keyboards and programming