Independent Releases

Review by Vard Aman

Delia, and now Marvel – Kiev, Ukraine, seems to be holding onto some real gems currently, that’s for sure! Marvel formed in 2006, and released their debut album, “V Kazhdom iz Nas” (which at the time of writing this review I had not yet heard) in 2010. In early 2011 they released two versions of a new EP “Reduce My Pain” (in English) and “Ona” (in Russian – meaning “She”); and at the end of 2011, their new single “Naiti Sebya” (meaning “Find Yourself”). Marvel describe their music as being Alternative Rock, which is a pretty broad description but probably a good one as Marvel’s musical style going by their EP and single is a very hard one to categorize. There is a very strong Metal element in their music as well, in fact, considerably more so than many of the bands out there who do claim to be some kind of Metal (usually in the guise of Modern Metal or Nu-metal). Marvel are honest and true to themselves. They play the music they want to play. They’re Marvel. So, with that, let’s stop talking about what they play and concentrate on how well they play it instead – which is very well indeed! “Reduce My Pain” consists of 3 tracks. All 3 are very well written and arranged and very well preformed and produced (and really catchy – they’ve been dominating the in-my-head playlist for a while now, and I’m certainly not complaining). Vocalist, Olga Skripova, makes use of a perfect combination of power and control, and she uses her voice not just really well, but wisely too. Her voice is the dominant feature but compliments the music perfectly – displaying an amazing talent but never forgetting that she’s part of a band. This to me is the hallmark of a really great vocalist – which Olga most certainly is (whether you share my opinion on hallmarks or not – listen and you’ll hear). “Tantra” is the first track and has a feel to it that the song title suggests. It’s also the most uptempo song on the EP but with measured changes that lays the platform for the next 2 tracks. One criticism I do have of “Tantra” is the use of a distortion effect on some of the vocals – I don’t think the effect really adds anything to the sound other than give it a slightly industrial feel (what for?) and I think that anything that excessively masks a voice like Olga’s is really taking something away rather than adding something. Other than that one small criticism it is a really good track. The next 2 tracks, “Reduce My Pain” and “My Own Passion” are the real highlights of the EP. They are both intense and powerful songs, and superbly (and intricately) written. They are a musical journey full of rises and falls; nadirs and zeniths; calm serenity building into brutal crescendos and falling again… all within 8 minutes (12 if you count “Tantra”). There is no central lyrical concept connecting all 3 tracks, but musically it does feel as if there is – and Marvel could not have done a better job of it had this actually been their intention (or maybe it was). That said; perhaps it is a good thing then that this is just a 3 track EP. Had it been longer, might the effect of its impact have been lost? Maybe, or maybe not; but one thing for sure is that while it might be a short musical journey, it is not one that will be forgotten in a hurry. And it’s a journey that makes one want to go back to the beginning and do it all over again… and again… and again….

So what if they had added a fourth track to the EP? Well, just listen to “Naiti Sebya” straight afterwards and find out. Marvel’s musical journey continues. The single is similarly well written to the material on “Reduce My Pain” with all of the musical crests and troughs and interesting extras that seem to typify Marvel’s music. “Naiti Sebya” is slower (in parts) than the material on “Reduce My Pain”; almost a ballad (in parts). The production is a little muddier here compared to the crystal-clear production on the EP but only when compared to the EP (in other words, if you listen to “Naiti Sebya” on it’s own you won’t notice). I’ve listened to both versions of the EP (“Reduce My Pain” and “Ona”) and think that overall I prefer the English version. Olga has a firm grip on the English language and the vocals on the English version seem to flow better than on the Russian version. In this case it is to do with Olga’s lyrics and vocal delivery on the 2 different versions and on the English version she has absolutely nailed it! There is only one version of “Naiti Sebya” – in Russian. Both versions of the EP and “Naiti Sebya” are available for FREE DOWNLOAD from Marvel’s website and I very strongly recommend you head over there, download it and listen to it. (For the Cyrillicly impaired: Скачать = download. Go to the Музыка tab to find “Reduce My Pain”). You’ll be very glad you did, and there is something here for everyone. I tried all review to resist the temptation to put it this way but in the end I had to give in: Marvel are just, well, marvellous!

Rating – 95/100


Tracklist

“Reduce My Pain” EP

  1. Tantra
  2. Reduce My Pain
  3. My Own Passion

 

“Naiti Sebya” SINGLE

  1. Naiti Sebya (Найти себя)

 

Line Up

  • Olga Skripova – Vocals
  • Dmitry Poludnitsin  – Guitars
  • Vlad Yemets  – Bass 
  • Dmitry PlyushDez  – Drums 

 

Links

MySpace * ReverbNation * Facebook * Twitter 

 

Please follow and like us:
error1
fb-share-icon0
Tweet 20
fb-share-icon20