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Review: Haunted by Angels - Season of Death
Haunted by Angels
Season of Death

Label: Independent
Year released: 2004
Duration: 63:29
Tracks: 10
Genre: Unclassifiable


Review online: October 21, 2004
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.4/5 (68%) (5 Votes)

Here's a band that I haven't seen discussed anywhere in the metal circles that I frequent - unless I miss some conversation somewhere. The band describes itself as a mix of gothic and progressive metal and that's not too far off, even though some of the songs here don't have much to do with either. In other words, it's a bit difficult to corner them into a specific category, so I won't. :) The vocalist is female, but it's not the symphonic stuff that has plagued the scene over the past four years. She does very clean and melodic vocals most of the time but also turns more aggressive and raucous at times. Overall she does a great job at handling the vocals and the reproaches I could have against the vocals would actually be more about repetitiveness here and there than the vocal performance itself.

Musically you get quite a mix here. Other than gothic and progressive, there's some more straightforward heavy metal sound in there as well. The keyboards are used quite a bit but not in annoying way and they help build up the songs' atmosphere when they are most prominent. Only "Raven and the Dove" has some real shitty late-Metallica lazy stop-and-go "riffage" (if I can call it that) and the only thing that saves the song is the vocal work. I wouldn't be surprised if the guitarist had grown up listening to Metallica records because a few of the guitar parts on the album sound like mid-80s Metallica - not the same music style, mind you. There's quite a few tempo changes in some of the songs and you find yourself switching from melancholic melodies to a near-thrash riff-o-rama (in "No Looking Back", for instance.) Me likes. ;)

The album ends with an interesting cover of "Dust in the Wind". But... If I run into another cover of that song, I'm gonna go ballistic. :) Overall a good album, nothing to rave about but it's easy listening (no, not in the pop sense of the term) and contains a good balance of catchy rockers and more melodic numbers - you get enough variety in there for it not to get boring after only a few listens. Don't let the gothic and progressive influences deter you if those aren't your cup of tea, for there's a lot more going on here. An interesting band to keep an eye on. Recommended.

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