Galadriel - The 7th Queen Enthroned review
|Album:||The 7th Queen Enthroned|
|Release date:||October 2012|
02. Crucifixion DeLuxe
03. Still Not Dead Enough
04. This World Is War
05. The Last Time
07. Mother Is Dying
Five years after the release of the promising yet surprising Renascence Of Ancient Spirit, Slovakian metal band Galadriel is back with another output, this time entitled The 7th Queen Enthroned. As an avid consumer of gothic orientated bands I was thrilled when I heard that the band plans to release a new record and since their previous opus did prove to be high quality material I raised my expectations for this follow up, naturally.
Does Galadriel outrun their previous effort? Hard to answer, as the five-year gap seems to have changed something too. A five-year gap always gives the feeling that a band suffers from a lack of creativity. While the style that made Galadriel well known is still alive and kicking in this record, it cannot be considered anymore a symphonic output. As a matter of fact, I always had difficulty in labeling this band, though I always referred to them as a gothic doom metal band with dark, melodic elements rather than a symphonic one.
Still, you can find the same recipe in this record. Catchy, melodic tunes with a beauty and the beast vocal approach that is split evenly between the clean female performance and the harsh male vocal output, some infectious riffs and guitar solos here and there, but nothing that gives you goosebumps. Emphasis is placed on the vocal performance, with Sona "Witch" Kozakova delivering some splendid melodic and clean performances while Dodo Datel delivers a brutal but unsophisticated harsh vocal performance.
Both singers are not at the level of bands such as Draconian or Tristania, but their performance in this opus is decent at best. On to the songs now, what this opus lacks is the quality of being convincing. While it works for a couple of hearing experiences, you find yourself asking for something to stick out. While some tracks like the opener "Evilution" tries to grab some attention with a combination of clean and harsh vocals, the best tracks from this album are, without second thoughts, the ones where Dodo Datel is in the highlight.
Tracks like "Crucifixion Deluxe" where Dodo does not give any room for Sona to perform and from which you can hear a riveting piano performance at the end of it or "Still Not Dead Enough", a track that also features a punching guitar solo opener can be considered as highlights. Other tracks that struggle to take the spotlight are "The World Is War" and "Mother Is Dying", the last one being one of the few tracks where the female vocal performance outshines the harsh male one.
In conclusion, if there is one thing that this band nailed with this album it is the production quality and the fact that this album has a perfect length; if it had been longer it would've been boring, if it had been shorter it would've left me asking for more. In other aspects, it does not outshine its predecessor but is far from being a failure. What prevents this band from having access to a wider audience is the lack of substance and the incapacity of being convincing. While not being as memorable as their previous outputs, The 7th Queen Enthroned is worth listening at least once, because it provides what pretty much any decent gothic/doom/melodic metal opus does and it definitely does not disappoint.
Highlights: "Evilution", "Crucifixion Deluxe", "Still Not Dead Enough". "Mother Is Dying".
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