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Hailing from Perth, Western Australia, this band has been around in one form or another since 2000. They are currently formed by the five members Alitia Atkins (vocals), Uwe Harnisch (bass), Linus Chen (guitars), Guy Lilico (keyboards) and Duane Bonney (drums & vocals). Their story is wild spanning these years as they went through different formations, living in England and Australia part of the time and plenty of drama on top of all of that. But what we are presented with today is this solid five-person goth-metal band with a solid sound.

Their musical style has a nice variation and should be a definite favorite for fans of the more emotional gothic metal sound, especially with the addition of female vocals to further deepen the textures of the overall style. The first references that come to mind for those not familiar with this band include Avrigus, Tristania, Darkwell, Type-O Negative and even some of the gothic rock bands with a bit of a metal influence.

With just their 2007 debut album available so far, they are off to a good start developing a fan base in different parts of the world. They are able to do some live shows and have received positive reviews from press, radio and fans. Keep an eye on this band, I think they are another great act to watch.



ShadowPlay - Review

Here is another awesome band out of Australia with their smooth and melodic, yet grinding style of gothic metal. The years and hard work that has gone into this album really show through the composition and production of the music contained on this disc. The artwork is beautiful, packaged in a jewel case with a booklet containing lyrics and a couple of nice band pictures. The album is presented in the form of ten beautiful, yet powerful tracks.

The music on this disc is really written and performed well across the majority of the tracks, and I think fans will find it hard to come up with many short-comings. Overall the tempo is kept mid-tempo around 80-100 bpm, so it's not a driving, thrashing album, but the inclusion of the crunching guitars give each piece a powerful edge that moves along with the solid percussion. As each track moves along with the touch of metal keeping it lively, Alitia's angelic vocals ride across the soundwaves creating beautiful soundscapes over the rough and driving backdrop. As you listen to each piece along these lines, the spellbinding atmosphere really envelops you, like a warm mist. The inclusion of various layered electronics and piano are a nice added bonus for this band's style as it brings out some of the powerful classical atmosphere, then you add on some choirs of vocals as more background layers and you really reach a master piece on tracks like "Faded", "Alone", "Everafter", "Once"
For those wanting a little more of a driving edge, this disc won't disappoint either. Though the tempo itself really doesn't pick up too much, the faster tracks do have some more intensity with more electronics and driving drums doing double time for the introduction or building up guitar solos or the chorus of these pieces. "The Awakening" is an example of one of these pieces, though I personnaly would have left the little guitar solo scales out of part of the track except where they blend in with the other grinding guitars, it seems too much of a throw-back to the big-hair heavy metal bands of the 80's, not the dark brooding gothic metal that I like to feature. But if you can get past that, and many metal fans will actually really enjoy that part, it really does bring back memories of a younger day, but the music on these tracks is equally awesome as the others. Of this faster paced variety, I think that "Elegy" as become a favorite with the inclusion of more electronics and bombastic guitars over the driving beat. This piece takes the best of the metal, goth and electroniic world and bring it to life in a moving anthem.

Another thing to note besides the muse vocals that Alitia provides, Duane jumps in on several pieces taking the lead and backing vocals on many occasions. This provides some real depth to the album and some great variety. This variety is always a good thing while staying true to the overall genre presented. As the album drives on, the listener is just taken in piece by piece into the awesome musical world that is created by this band. Piece after piece is powerful, beautiful, captivating and just great to listen to. The emotional and musical intensity remains strong right up to the end with the climactic piece "The Hour" with all of it's majesty and splendor finally giving out to the soft piano piece "In The Mirror" to really wrap up the album in style.

Wow, after really listening intensely to this album, it's almost emotionally draining, but uplifting in so many ways. This is music that many people can really enjoy, as mentioned it's beautiful yet powerful, soothing yet moving and edgy, a real diversity in moods and music, highly recommended.

Rating: 4.5/5



Website:
www.theshadowplay.com

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