The moment between our lives. Always a topic for debate but what’s up for more debate is today’s review from Italy’s Afterlife Symphony. Their latest release, Moment Between Lives, is a pleasing cross blend of Symphonic and Progressive female fronted metal. While some may be turned off by female fronted acts, vocalist Anna Giusto, has such charisma and a dark persona that it definitely makes for an interesting sound. Claims suggest that this group is for fans of Nighwish, Epica and….wait for it…..Dimmu Borgir, I was a bit skeptical. To be honest, the group sounds more like the first two than the latter but don’t let that leave you discouraged. I would probably throw some Evanescence into the mix as well as We Are The Fallen; very gothy, dark and atmospheric.
There are elements that one would expect, heavier than thou riffs, pounding drums, structural arrangements and a large orchestral presence thanks to the keyboards and even go as far as citing famous composer, Hans Zimmer as an influence. What sets this album a part from the other bands in similar realms is the extra layering of darkness, very grim and melancholic in some ways. Another aspect that threw me off was the absence of operatic vocals, which in this case turned out pretty well as most would assume such circumstances.
Half-Moon Night, has some of the large and grand symphonic schemes that push this album. The progressive element also adds some eargasms that wistfully carry the track to an enlightened sense. My Existence To You and Broken Breath gives the listener a time to reflect. This is where the atmosphere gets somber and a little depressing but in a metal way. You might feel transported to another world upon listen.
Dreamers Paradox, gets ballady with a strong piano piece present. While that was expected at some point, I was taken by the two part track towards the end of the album. Novembre (Part 1) and Novembre (Part 2), is a very in depth track that comes with soothing vocals from Miss Anna. Part 1 is shy under two-minutes meanwhile Part 2 is nearly 9 minutes. The track transitions between a tribal/folky sound to headbangable, slightly apocalyptic with the orchestral background, definitely one of the more metal friendly and strong tracks.
Definitely for fans of the female fronted symphonic scene, their take on symphonic metal is slightly different to what else is out there, setting them slightly apart from the competition. At times I felt Anna held back but this is only their second album so hopefully the third time is a charm, as the saying goes. Overall, a soldi vocal performance and a strong performance overall from the remainder of the band. If you enjoy albums that give this ‘roller-coaster’ effect with some feeling attached to it, you’ll enjoy immersing yourself in Moments Between Lives. Stay Metal \m/
Official Website: http://www.revalverecords.com/AfterlifeSymphony.html
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