Label : Ravenheart Music
Review by Tony Cannella
Beautiful, passionate, full of heart and cinematic, those are some of the words that I would use to describe Tatiana’s Niovi. First of all, they hail from Greece and they combine a number of influences ranging from opera to symphonic metal to soundtrack type stuff, classic rock and more. It can all be heard on their debut album “Breath of Light” which is out now via Ravenheart Music.
Lead vocalist Tatiana Manolidou has a tremendously expressive and diverse voice and musically Niovi is fantastic. The intro “Breath of Life” segues into the orchestral “When I’m Lost” nicely and provides a solid opening. It isn’t a typical pounding metal opener; instead it is a song that provides plenty of atmospheres. Continue reading »
Interview by Danny Robertson
Introducing Lateless, the metal quintet from Russia who released their second EP “Breath Again” earlier this year. Here we catch up with them to discuss a little about their history, their influences and their future plans.
How did the band first form?
Nataly: Originally the idea of collective creation was appeared in 2007, but together we were gathered only in February of 2009. On the first rehearsals our guitarist Vyacheslav has strummed a melody which other participants began to develop. During the second rehearsal we have been already working over almost ready composition, witch has been burnt so naturally. It was “Breath Again”. I think, it is possible to consider that it was a start line.
Yaroslav: The idea of creation of group at us was for a long time. Only in the beginning of 2009 we managed to all to gather and try the forces. All of us for a long time each other knew and consequently already nominees of musicians have been completed. There was the most important question and who will sing? And here on one of concerts our guitarist Vyacheslav has acquainted me with Natalia and through not which time, we have broken to rehearsals.
Would you say those same influences still help to shape the new material?
Nataly: Yes, of course. However, we are not standing at the same place. Music is alive being. It varies, it adapts to new conditions, it develops and improved. Lots of our tracks are not similar against each other as sometimes happens in families – brothers and sisters are very different they have different characters and absolutely different appearance.
Yaroslav: Initially nobody influenced us and I think, as now influence of whom or is minimum. When we only started to rehearse and think out tracks, we had no special concept, as well as that we will do, all is pure intuitively. I think that that moment will come soon that we already will start to influence some groups. Though it is unconditional in the world there is a weight of talented collectives. It is necessary to think. Now there comes autumn, and this season to me always the beginning-middle of September was pleasant especially. It such sad and melancholic, moderately depressive and romantic. I like to sit one not far from the house in park before lake, on to dream, on to think. The loneliness moves me to musical progress in respect of a music and material writing. Sometimes also I am am attacked by depression and I forget about all.
What are your aims? Is there a longtime dream you’d like to fulfill?
Nataly: To subdue the Everest and to make travel around the world. As to music … I am still in that fine condition when music is a language with help of which you can express your private world, tell something that is very important for you. As a matter of fact, I think that it is the highest creativity point from which the majority of musicians are begin, as paradoxical it isn’t be. But then become sad processes which put commercial success above internal freedom. I understand that it can seems very fondly, but, to my mind, the sense of creativity is consist of freedom of expression. And, of course, at is great happiness when your inwardness are understood and divided, when with the help of your imagination and your self-expression you can open something new to other people, and together you find the way to your own internal free “I”.
Yaroslav: Is more whole at present not so much, but they are. To write down an album, with a good and qualitative sound, the material at us is ready also I think that in the end of autumn in the beginning of winter we will sit down in studio and we will write down it. We will search in parallel publishing label, most likely the European. At us in Russia they are not professional enough. To win back concerts in support of an album. And further it will be visible? As to my dream, of what I can dream at me there is a favourite group in which I play, people with which it is pleasant to me to work.
Some bands prefer not to be pigeon-holed – are you comfortable as a band with specific labels? What genre of music do you most feel comfortable to be associated with?
Nataly: To tell the truth, as for me the classification has not got enough value. Of course, there are a lot of rules, subtleties and cunnings in the process of record of any music direction about which professionals know. That’s why the label for me an indicator of the sound’s quality, at first.
Yaroslav: We against stamps and a cliche over music, same first of all art. I am imposed by many styles and directions, now they will be not listed. As to labels, a situation simply pitiable. All of them by and large are not professional, a maximum that they can make it for group to print circulation of an album and to make T-shirts. What promo actions other, concerts and rounds in I will take albums are not made. At us it is a lot of groups and the majority of them is not necessary and a penny, 80 percent of groups are not professional, have no sufficient records and other. Not on think that it because of crisis so was always. As to us that we without a label, also I wish to address to all who reads this interview. We are ready to cooperation, write to us, we will be glad to contact.
Which current acts do you admire most?
Nataly: Inspiration is rather changeable woman. There are a lot of positive in my life now, and it helps me to write. Last text has turned out very sensual. It is possible to tell that the sensuality is inspiring me now.
Yaroslav: As to inspiration it comes spontaneously and unexpectedly. I as on the author of music I am influenced by very many things, it can be both weather and the feelings, any experiences, actions. And many other things that is in human consciousness.
What were your last 3 CD purchases?
Nataly: Ho! It was Oper “Aida”, Black Sabbath “Paranoid” and soundtracks from Tarantino’s films.
Yaroslav: Recently I not so often buy CD. Certainly it is bad, but I download music from the Internet, so much groups are simple because for about one hour and you do not know what to expect from their material. To download and listen easier, if the material clings me, I will go and I will buy CD. That I have got last three CDs, it were Amorphis, Long Distance Calling and perhaps Endless Journey.
What’s next for the band, where can we expect to see you in the coming months?
Nataly: We are planning to act in Murmansk the next month, and also we are planning to act in Saint-Petersburg, on a warming up of remarkable collective Amorphis, whose latest album was amazing. Respect!!!)
Yaroslav: Plans for the nearest some months the such. Now we prepare for several big concerts in the autumn in Russia. We will have a presentation of ours ?? “Breath Again” in the city of Murmansk in the north of Russia, its landscapes are similar to the Norwegian fjords. Then we play with Amorphis in St.Petersburg at them one concert in Russia in support of a new album. That will be further while foggy.
Any last messages you’d like to send out to people?
Nataly: Hope to see you soon!!!!
Yaroslav: First of all I wish to thank Femme Metal Webzine, and also in particular Miriam, for the shown interest to us. Listen to good and qualitative music. We hope for the further cooperation with you. Greetings from Russia.
Label : Emmeciesse/Heart of Steel Records
Review by Tony Cannella
One thing I have learned over the years is that there are so many great, unknown and talented bands/musicians in the metal world. Italy’s Shining Fear are another perfect example of this. The band had only previously released one demo “…Catch the Breathe” in 2005. Now, 5-years later they have issued their debut full-lenght “ApocaLife”. The style that band displays is energetic, Power Metal with a bit of Progressive Metal mixed in as well, to create a cool, atmospheric debut. The band is fronted by Barbara Mischeri and her powerful vocal style is definitely one of the strongest aspects of Shining Fear but that is to take nothing away from the other band members, who all prove to be very accomplished musicians and songwriters. There is no fooling around here as the band get right into it from the opening of the very first track “ApocaLife”. From there things only get heavier with “Caresses in Darkness”, heavy but not without melody, which is pretty much the case throughout the CD. There is simply no interruption to the powerful guitar riffs and the instantly like-able and clear vocals of Barbara Mischeri packs a lot of power in it’s own right. The fourth track “No One Erase” speeds up the pace a bit with it’s almost thrashy style and is one of the heavier moments on the CD. This was a big highlight for me. The band manage to incorporate old school metal guitar riffs, cool solos and plenty of melody, as can be heard on the tracks: “Haunting Damnation”, “Eight”, “Two Worlds Collide” and the great closing number “Final Sentence”. After 9-songs and 50-minutes worth of music it is easy to come away impressed with “ApocaLife” and Shining Fear‘s brand of Power Metal. “ApocaLife” is a hungry sounding, juggernaut of a debut and the band prove they have a lot to offer metal fans both in terms of talent and songwriting abilities. Hopefully Shining Fear won’t remain remain “unknown” for long.
Rating – 90/100
- Caresses in Darkness
- Haunting Damnation
- No One Erase
- Two Worlds Collide
- Absolute Contrast
- Come From Hell
- Final Sentence
- Barbara Mischeri – Vocals
- Matteo Migliorini – Guitar
- Lorenzo Tomelleri – Keyboards
- Jacopo Ravagnani – Bass
- Pierluigi Lazzarini – Drums
Review by Tony Cannella
From Russia, the band is called Lateless. They have previously released two EP’s and now they have issued their full-length debut. They have been described as Gothic metal but I find their music to be more up-tempo than what is usually considered Gothic Metal.“Lateless” features a playing time of only about 35-minutes spread out over 10-songs. With their lead vocalist Nataly at the helm the band deliver a strong brew of mostly up-tempo songs, with some heavy guitar riffs present throughout the CD. After the short “Intro”, Lateless dive into the pounding “All Right” to get the ball rolling. My favorite track would have to be the furiously up-tempo “Prisoner of a Life”. This track features just an awesome melody that really drives the song. “The Caribbean” is one of the slower songs in tempo but is still quite heavy. The final track is the alternative version of “All Right”. There are some minor changes made to the song, mainly with the vocals, but it is still basically the same track. Other highlights include: “Styx”, “Breath Again” and “Lonely Days”. Fans who have their first two EPs will notice that many of the same songs are presented here. So, are Lateless a Gothic Metal band? That is probably irrelevant. The fact remains that Lateless are just a good band, and their debut is living, breathing proof of this.
Rating – 83/100
- All Right
- Prisoner of a Life
- Breathe Again
- Lonely Days
- My Second Nightmare
- Two People
- The Caribbean
- All Right (Alternative Version)
- Nataly – Vocals
- Vecheslav – Guitars
- Yaroslav – Bass
- Nick – Drums
Review By Tony Cannella
Russia’s Lateless have already released a very promising demo CD titled “Breath Again”. That was a strong output that really set the band well on their way. They have just released a new demo recording titled “Lonely Days” – well half of it is new – it does feature two new versions of songs that appeared on their previous demo. Whatever the case, it is still a welcomed occurrence to hear this band once again. The band have retained the heaviness that made their debut demo such a treat and that really makes this one work as well. Actually, they’ve only gotten heavier, yet still retaining their melodic sensibilities. All of that can be heard on the 4-songs and 17-minutes worth of music that can be heard here. The CD begins with “All Right” – one of the new songs and a great opener! This has a solid guitar riff coursing throughout the track and the vocals of Nataly are clean and crystal clear. Track 2 is the first of the two songs that can be heard on the “Breath Again” demo. “The Caribbean” was one of the highlights on that demo and it is also one here. It starts again with the sound of crashing waves then launches into an undeniable riff. Nataly also puts her great vocal range to use here. The next track “Lonely Days”can also be heard on the previous demo – in two different versions. This version is a more guitar driven, hungrier sounding take on the song. The final track “Two People” is another heavy one that is the perfect closer for this demo. Lateless continues to show promise and are one of Russia’s most exciting bands these days. Hopefully the day is not far off when we can hear a full-length from this band. “Lonely Days” is indeed another step in the right direction.
Rating – 75/100
- All Right
- The Caribbean
- Lonely Days
- Two People
- Nataly – Vocals
- Vecheslav – Guitar
- Sergey – Guitar
- Yaroslav – Bass
- Nick – Drums
Style switcher only on this demo version. Theme styles can be changed from Options page.
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