Browsing articles tagged with " realms"
Dec 29, 2012
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INTERVIEW: Anaé – Adrana

Interview by Alessandra Cognetta

Anaè is the lead singer of the French metal band Adrana, a combination of progressive metal, heavy metal and classical music, enriched by a strong literary component. The mix of different influences as well as forms of art makes Adrana a unique musical experience and we’re here to find more about them.
 
First of all, welcome and thanks for taking the time to answer our questions, Anaè. How has 2012 been for Adrana so far?

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to present our music and artistic work! I am really thrilled! The year 2012 has been fairly quiet so far. After the release of “The Ancient Realms” and the first part of the French tour we were given a little time to work on new songs, work toward a movie clip and prepare a surprise regarding our future gigs to all of our fans!

One of the things I enjoy the most about your music is the “story” (I won’t dare to call it a concept because in my opinion it’s far more than that) behind your whole production. Can you describe for us the main themes of Adrana‘s adventures?

We would like that it becomes much more than a concept. We are working on it, but we are still far from what I wish to do in terms of total art (featuring theater, music, stories, dance, and a whole fantasy world). Our music tells the adventures of the warrior princess Adrana desperate to reclaim her fallen kingdom. It contains many elements of heroic fantasy like the character’s actions or places in a rather dark atmosphere, darkening progressively with each new album. Although the story revolves around a princess, this one is more gloomy and sanguine. There are many battles, betrayals, murders and unmentionable secrets that punctuate the epic story of Adrana. Adrana talks about the difficulty of bringing people together in their diversity, and the difficulty to win the trust of others. Adrana shows us that very often we find ourselves alone with our destiny. Finally, this quest leads the Princess to ask the recursive question as to whether the pursuit of a right cause, right as it is, justifies having to kill thousands of human and nonhuman creatures to get there?

We know what influenced your music, but what influenced your lyrics? How were Adrana and her Ancient Realms born?

The band name was invented, without special intention by Ludo and Maxime (guitarist and drummer, the founders of the band). They then included Grhyll, our keyboard player, and me to write the story. The first songs whose lyrics had no relationship between them (stories of vampires, putrefied nymphs, or warrior princess), have become the pillar of the epic story of Adrana. Now, Grhyll has taken charge of the story and I work exclusively on writing lyrics around the story created by Grhyll.

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Jun 6, 2012
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Industrial/Electronic Realms : Sleepthief – “The Dawnseeker” (2006)

Label : Neurodisc Records

Review by Luisa Mercier

After falling in love with their latest release, “Labyrinthine Heart”, I decided to listen carefully to their previous one, “The Dawnseeker”. First of all, let me spend a word or maybe more on the graphic artwork. It is something so beautifully crafted, never seen such an amazing design for a CD. The content is amazing as well. If I should compare the two albums. I’d say that this is more introspective, more emotional and relaxing, while “Labyrinthine Heart” is enriched with some lively moments. This morning my emotional standpoint is such I could write easily about this piece of art. It starts with “Eurydice”, apparently inspired to the Greek myth. Soft, delicate, caresses your ears and your soul. Also the video is one of the most well shot I have ever watched. An Eastern ethnic feeling introduces “Desires of Ages”. The orchestrations and the drums are thick on the usual lush background which provides the perfect environment for the lovely female vocals. “You Did a Good Thing” is maybe the only sad song in the Sleepthief’s discography. The others are quite melanchonic, nostalgic, but always with a sparkle of hope. This one is just sad. It moves me a lot. You did a good thing, you did, it’s a past tense. You tried to save her, it didn’t work, you have not to regret. That’s the message I get every time.  ”Just Say It” is slightly more upbeat and electronic than the previous ones. The chorus is memorable, it’s one of those moments which made me love Sleepthief, one of those things which raise your soul. Cover song time. The chosen one is “The Chaffeur”, originally by Duran Duran. I already listened to other bands covering this song (the Italian The LoveCrave for example) but this is the best by far. It’s a nice pop-rock arrangement with electronic background which shows the range of styles Sleepthief can play. Love Kirsty Hawkshaw’s vocals in the and how they blend with the more upbeat music. Following we find “Tenuous”, a gentler ballad, with vastly reaching orchestral-style arrangements. Listen for her soaring harmony layers throughout. Tension builds in the verse and is perfectly released in the lush chorus. Once again, the video shot for this song is really worth watching. One of my favourite is “Sublunar (Sweet Angel)”. It starts with a suspicious pace, soaring afterwards, sweetly coming to the beautiful “Hush, hush, hush”. I love how the different vocal layers are mixed, it gives an heavenly feeling. “Nightjar” is a dark, brooding and bluesy ballad, perfectly suited for the singer’s distinctive voice. Strings, percussion and electronics blend perfectly against the solo vocal line. I am still asking myself if “Fire from Heaven” refers again to Greek Mythology, to Prometheus to be precise who stole fire from Olympus. It’s quite clear that Justin Elswick has a thing for Ancient Greece. The song is a mid paced one with an ironic atmosphere, which makes it unique. “The Metro” is another cover song. Maybe this is the most club oriented track, with its upbeat and danceable aura. “Kiss to Savor” is maybe the most stunning song on this album. Featuring the vocals of Jody Quine, is lushous, sensual, sexy, perfect for romantic or something more moment. Harmony layers echo while the melody built alongside is powerfully delivered. Afterthoughts is a rhythmic and Celtic influenced number, most reminiscent of Enya‘s music in many ways. The voice is crystalline throughout–in lead and lush, multi-tracked harmony–layers. The verse is delivered very delicately against light electronics. The chorus is rich, rhythmic and layered with vocals coming at the listener from every direction. A masterpiece. “Entre Ciel et Mer”, the closer of the album, is the French version of “You Did a Good Thing”. Don’t’ know if it’s the language, but it sounds more hopeful like looking outside the window in a sunny day although having pain in the heart. I recommend to listen both of the Sleepthief albums, they have always something to offer to your heart and soul.

Rating – 90/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Eurydice
  2. Desire of Ages
  3. You Did A Good Thing
  4. Just Say It
  5. The Chaffeur
  6. Tenuous
  7. Sublunar
  8. Nightjar
  9. Fire from Heaven
  10. The Metro
  11. Kiss to Savor
  12. Afterthoughts

 

Line Up

  • Jody Quine – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Harland – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Nicola Hitchcok – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Kyoko Bartsoen – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Kirsty Hawkshaw – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Kristy Thirsk – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Caroline Lavelle – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Roberta Harrison-Carter – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Laura Edman – Vocals & Lyrics
  • San.drine – Vocals & Lyrics
  • Justin Elswick –  Piano & Songwriting
  • Israel Curtis – Programming

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation * Facebook * Twitter * Site

 

Jun 5, 2012
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Industrial/Electronic Realms : Aiboforcen – “Dédale” (2011)

Label : Alfa Matrix

Review by Luisa Mercier

After several years, the Belgian duo Aiboforcen finally releases their 5th studio album. In “Dédale” various genres of electronic music are explored: you can find harsh industrial beats but also some synthpop, trip-hop and EBM. The elements of the different styles are mixed quite well and the vocals of Ayria contribute to make everything flow together. The overall mood is quite dark and gloomy, disturbing; but now and then there is a ray of light for example “Time & Space” is a nice catchy electro pop song. There are also some guests vocalists on the album. Laether S. lends “Poem of Life” a hard industrial sound, the same happens with amGod in the song “Parasthesia”. While on the U2 cover of “New Year’s Day” we find Ayria who graces the song with her light, soaring vocals. Last but not the least, Donna of Ego Likeness on “The World Below”, which sounds much more grounded than the other songs on the album. Overall, it’s a very solid release and can also be considered a nice starting point to check the band back catalogue.

Rating – 80/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Dédale
  2. Everything Gets Sacrificed (feat. Ayria)
  3. Shadows
  4. Time & Space
  5. Light
  6. Poem Of Life (feat. Leaether Strip)
  7. Sordide Sentimental
  8. Lhassa
  9. The World Below (feat. Ego Likeness)
  10. New Year´s Day (feat. Ayria)
  11. Crysis
  12. Mass
  13. Rhythm Of Light (feat. Diffuzion)
  14. Parasthesia (feat. amGod)
  15. Méandres

 

Line Up

  • Benoît Blanchart – Music, Synths & Sampling
  • Séba Dolimont – Lyrics, Vocals & Sampling

 

Links

Facebook 

 

Jun 4, 2012
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Industrial/Electronic Realms : Acylum – “Karzinom” (2011)

Label : Alfa Matrix 

Review by Luisa Mercier

Pedro Engel, the mind behind the project Acylum, is always ready to challenge the ebm scene. The new full-length “Karzinom” follows the steps of the previous work “The Enemy” but with a different and much better production. Together with his wife Nadine Cooraz, he delivers tracks like “Shoot’em Up” and “Question” which take over the listener with their rythm, while “Deutsch” has lyrics that will sparkle criticism once again among the lovers of the genre. The orchestral arrangement only add layers to the tracks. Acylum have created an album of madness, but once again it’s a vision of a world you’ll want to visit again and again. It is confusing, alienating, but fascinating at the same time. So, you only have to start the trip to try with youe own ears.

Rating – 80/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Haus Am See 
  2. Shoot’em Up 
  3. Sweat Cunt 
  4. Angel
  5. Question 
  6. Freeze
  7. Deathzone 
  8. Flatliners
  9. Deutsch 
  10. King Acylum 
  11. Silence 
  12. Spit On Your Grave 
  13. Freeze (HausHetaere Version)
  14. Question (Amgod Remix) 
  15. Silence (Reaxion Guerrilla Remix) 
  16. In Memory

 

Line Up

  • Pedro “Acylum” Engel – Music & Vocals
  • Nadine “Cooraz” Engel -  Lyrics & Vocals

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation * Facebook

Apr 13, 2012
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Adrana – “The Ancient Realms” (2011)

Label : Brennus Music

Review by Tony Cannella

France’s Adrana have been together since 2004 and site some of their influences as: Rhapsody of Fire, Nightwish (that one is the most obvious), Symphony X and Dream Theatre among others. The band has previously released an EP and a full-length and now returns with their second full-length album “The Ancient Realms”. The music on “The Ancient Realms” has the complexity of some of the above mentioned bands and vocalist Anae’s all out, blitzkrieg of operatic vocals will be loved by some and loathed by others. Whatever you want to say about her voice, you can’t deny that it is huge and a dominating factor for better or worse on “The Ancient Realms”. “The Ancient Realms” begins with the symphony laden intro “Fall of an Iced Dusk” as the piece gets heavier and then segues into the powerful up-tempo opener “The Frozen Path”. This is an excellent opener and a good introduction to the band. Judging by their song titles it is not hard to see where Adrana looks to for inspiration with their fantasy based lyrics. Next we have “The Grey Princess” which continues in the same vein. For sure Adrana add a lot of elements that you would expect out of a symphonic metal band, but they also add a lot of heaviness and blasting rhythms to the songs – and some cool tempo changes along the way. Sure Adrana may not be the most original band out there, but in my opinion originality is overrated, everything’s already been done! The fact is, “The Ancient Realms” features some good songs, musicianship and most of all passion. Highlights include: “Revelation”, “The Old Guardian” and “Prison of Memories”. Vocalist Anae’s vocals may be polarizing and divisive, but personally I grew to really like them and she adds a lot to the songs. Sometimes I wish she would bring it down a bit, but still for the most part she sings the hell out of the material and it can also be very inspiring. Adrana may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but fans of the opera symphonic metal genre should at least have a listen of “The Ancient Realms” and see what this French band is all about.

Rating – 78/100

 

Tracklist

  1. Fall of an Iced Dusk
  2. The Frozen Path
  3. The Grey Princess
  4. Revelation
  5. The Old Guardian
  6. Prison of Memories
  7. Theater of a Blazing Night
  8. Burning Horizon
  9. Over the Past
  10. Poison
  11. The Bow and the Beast
  12. Obsidian Collapses
  13. A New Dawn

 

Line Up

  • Anae – Vocals
  • Grhyll – Keyboards
  • Ludo – Guitars
  • Mric – Bass
  • Max – Drums 

 

Links

MySpace *  Facebook * Twitter * Site

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