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May 19, 2012
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Luminis – “From Within” EP (2011)

Independent Release

Review by Tony Cannella

From New Jersey comes the Symphonic Goth Metal trio Luminis. Luminis began as a Symphonic Metal tribute band, playing songs from their favorite bands of the genre before embarking on their current path of writing and performing original material. Their initial work is called “From Within” and features a playing time of 4-songs, 21-minutes. Their sound is melancholic, moody music with symphonic elements and the operatic at times vocals of Tara. Piano signals the opening of the laid back first track “Into My Sin”. This has a mournful, somber quality to it. “Nightfall Child” begins with piano once again and has a slower tempo to begin things and follows the same musical path as the previous song. The songs are mostly taking on a down tempo pace, and I don’t think anyone would say that this is happy sounding music; still it is obvious that the band put a lot of their heart and souls into the crafting of these songs. The 3rd track “Falling Away From Me” begins with an acoustic guitar and orchestral opening which pretty much dominates throughout the duration of this ballad, which has a sad quality to it. The final song, “The Other Side of the Mirror”, is one of the heavier tracks featured here and quickly became my favorite, thanks to some excellent vocal work by Tara, changes in tempo and a cool choir-like chorus. For a first try, Luminis has delivered a pretty good introduction with “From Within”. The band could probably be helped with a better production, but despite the weak production, the quality of the music shines through.

Rating – 72/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Into My Sin
  2. Nightfall Child
  3. Falling Away From Me
  4. The Other Side of the Mirror

 

Line Up

  • Tara – Vocals
  • Andre – Guitar
  • Steve – Drums

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation *  BandCamp * Facebook * Google Plus * Twitter * Site

May 14, 2012
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Karkaos – “In Burning Skies” EP (2011)

Independent Release

Review by Tony Cannella

Karkaos are an interesting band to come out of Canada. On their debut 6-song, 25-minute EP the band comes at you fast and heavy with an aggressive metal sound. Their vocalist Veronica Ortiz Rodriguez does an excellent job in going from death growls to clean vocals ala Alissa White Glutz from another Canadian band The Agonist. Karkaos has been described as Death Metal or Metalcore which I’m not sure is fully accurate. It no doubt stems from the vocals – even though Veronica Ortiz Rodriguez has way more to offer than just senseless death grunts, you can just feel the aggression in her voice. Musically there is a bit of a classic metal influence, some guitar harmonies and a full time keyboardist which is rare for this type of band. Sure “In Burning Skies” is pretty much straight forward, no fooling around metal, but they also add some melodic touches into the mix. After the brief intro “Catharsis”, Karkaos launch into the aggressive “Awaiting the Clock’s Last Turn”. This is the perfect introduction to Karkaos. The classic metal riffs are there and Veronica is an excellent front woman who packs plenty of power in her voice. Next we have “Ashes”, which is slower in tempo but still heavy and the inclusion of keyboards gives the song a pretty cool atmosphere. There are also some clean male vocals included in this song. “The Last Stand” is next and is my favorite. It starts off with a bit of a Celtic influence before blasting into full on heaviness. The final two songs “Lie for a Lie” and “The Tempest” brings “In Burning Skies” to satisfying conclusion. While “In Burning Skies” is just a taste of what Karkaos has to offer. The real test however, is when they release a full-length album to see if they can sustain the level of consistency on “In Burning Skies”. “In Burning Skies” is good – not great – but it is a nice start for this young Canadian band.

Rating – 80/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Catharsis
  2. Awating the Last Clock’s Turn
  3. Ashes
  4. The Last Stand
  5. Lie for a Lie
  6. The Tempest

 

Line Up

  • Veronica Ortiz Rodriguez – Vocals
  • Francis Tremblay – Guitars
  • Vincent Harnois – Guitars
  • Michel Pelequin – Keyboards
  • Guillaume Vaillencourt – Bass
  • Normand Martel – Drums 

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation * Facebook

Mar 13, 2012
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Infinitus Mortus – “2012″ (2010)

Independent Release

Review by Tony Cannella

From New Jersey comes the symphonic metal duo Infinitus Mortus. Judging by the sounds coming from their debut “2012″, it is hard to believe that there are only two members in the band. The lead vocalist is Tara and she is joined by the multi-instrumentalist Steve who pretty much does everything else. As you could probably decipher given the album’s title, “2012″ is an ambitious concept album, based around the Mayan prophecy that the world will end in 2012. Dark, Epic and Melodic are three good words to describe “2012″. In front Lady Tara, you have a truly talented vocalist with an expressive operatic style. Steve completes the dark vision with his many talents. The intro “The Dark Rift” gives way to the rapid fire riffing of “The Next Atlantis”“Worst Plague Of All… Love” begins with some nice piano and then settles nicely into a mid-tempo, heavy, melodic groove. My only complaint – and it is a small one – is that perhaps Tara’s vocals are a little low in the mix. Besides that minor complaint, “2012″ is really loaded with good metal riffs and songs. Highlights include: “Blood Lust”, the symphonic ally beautiful ballad “My Apocalypse”, “The 10th Planet” and the albums closer “A Golden Age”. For those who love conceptual metal, then Infinitus Mortus is a band well worth checking out and “2012″ I’m sure is only the beginning for this Jersey band.

Rating – 88/100

 

Tracklist

  1. The Dark Rift
  2. The Next Atlantis
  3. Worst Plague of All… Love
  4. A Drink From the Nile
  5. Blood Lust
  6. My Apocalypse
  7. The 10th Planet
  8. The Unknown
  9. The Final Battle
  10. A Golden Age

 

Line Up

  • Tara Ortiz – Vocals
  • Stephen Megna – Guitars, Keyboards, Bass and Drums 

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation * Facebook

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