|Review: Almora - Kalihora's Song|
Label: Zihni Müsik
Year released: 2003
Genre: Power Metal
Review online: December 10, 2003
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Well this is a disappointment. I rather liked this band's last CD, and was actually looking forward to this one. "Gates Of Time" had some rough edges, but showed a lot of promise. Almora have completely avoided said promise and produced a startlingly boring album as a follow-up.
Almora really haven't changed much since their last CD, and therein lies part of the problem. All the things that were wrong with "Gates Of Time" are still here: the songwriting tends to plod rather than soar, and the vocals of male frontman Ahmet still suck pretty bad. He's trying hard, I can tell, but he just can't sing. The band needs to ditch this guy and get a real singer. Even going with female vocalist Nihan 100% would be a huge improvement. Whereas "Gates" seemed to burst exuberantly from the CD player, "Kalihora's Song" slogs along for most of its length at the same tedious pace. The nimble guitarwork that made the last album so enjoyable is firmly muffled in the background in favor of plodding rhythm parts that sound a LOT like old Led Zeppelin riffs. "Forever Free" perks things up a bit, as does "Rage Of The Falcon", but the crappy singing pretty much ruins both tunes.
Now I can tell this is some sort of concept album even with the language barrier, but someone needs to impress upon this band that a concept does not give you a license to bore me. And bore you Almora will, with not one but TWO songs repeated on the CD. The second song and the last song here: "Cehennem Geceleri" and "The Hell-Nights" are in actuality the same damned song – a boring trudge of a song that goes on about twice as long as it should. I don't care what 'conceptual' reasons there might be for this, it is an inexcusable rip-off. Maybe they included it because one is in Turkish and one in English, but it still sucks. There are also two 'versions' of "Tears Of The Angels" on this disc and they both sound exactly alike, and the song already sounds too much like "Cehennem Geceleri" for my money. So what you get is really only 8 songs on 10 tracks. Oh, and the title song opens with a stupefying two minutes of heavily accented narration which I defy any sane human being to sit through.
So this album is a serious let-down. Here we have an obviously talented band from an obscure region of the world that seemed to show real promise, but rather than give us a rock-ass metal album, they decided it was better to be arty and dull. Here's a few tips: get rid of Ahmet, turn the guitars up loud, and write some songs that sound alive rather than like zombie marching music. Until then, I'm going to have to take Almora off the list of bands to watch. Dull dull dull.
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