Independent Release

Review by Tony Cannella

It’s good to see more and more symphonic metal coming from the U.S. lately. Pittsburgh’s Second Empire is one such band – and a good one at that. They have just issued their debut self-titled EP and after listening, I have to say that this band has a lot to offer.

The keyboard intro kicks off the opening tune “Everlasting” as the rumbling guitars join in. Lead vocalist Alex Lindsay Roth has a cool mid-range voice. This song really takes off in different directions with a strong orchestral part and a great solo. The next track, “Hold Me (‘Til We’re Both Dead)” gets started with a piano intro before the song steadily picks up the tempo. Still, this is a great mid-tempo song and one with an undeniably catchy melody and chorus. I loved this song! The 8-minute “Paradox Nightmare” is one of the heavier ones. The next track “Sorrow My Savior” starts as a ballad before progressively picking up the tempo and heaviness. The EP closes with the straight-forward “The Valley Beneath” to end things on a high note.

I enjoyed the Second Empire EP. Going forward, I have every confidence that this band has the ability to make a killer full-length. If you are a fan of Within Temptation, Delain and other bands of that style then I would strongly recommend Second Empire.

Rating – 84/100



  1. Everlasting
  2. Hold Me (‘Til We’re Both Dead)
  3. Paradox Nightmare
  4. Sorrow My Savior
  5. The Valley Beneath



  • Alex Lindsay Roth – Lead Vocals/Keyboards
  • Bret Stark- Lead Guitar/Vocals
  • Matt Kastner – Drums/Percussion




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