Shadowsreign - Bloodcity - The Forgotten Memories Part 1
10 January 2006

01. The Bloodmaster
02. Cult Of Lilith
03. Salvation (Escape From Bloodcity)
04. Far Away From The Sun
05. Bloodcity
06. Reflections
07. The Cainian Brotherhood
08. Section 9-99 - The Colony
09. My Destination
10. Dawn Of Rebellion

After Lord Vampyr and Theatres Des Vampires parted ways he formed a new band under his name and released an album, after this album the band changed its name to Shadowsreign, a band being promoted as gothic metal. I wouldn't refer to this band as gothic simply because I am a gothic metal elitist and gothic metal for me is metal with obvious gothic rock/death rock/dark wave references, henceforth Shadowsreign do not deserve this label.

It varies from heavy metal to black/death metal, depending on the passage, having as well its more atmospheric and acoustic passages that make the sound of the band more affected, but the question that must be answered is if their debut album "Bloodcity - The Forgotten Memories Part 1" is good and something worth checking. Well, the answer I would give is no, I didn't enjoy this album, almost not at all, except for some very few songs and some passages here and there, which means nothing to me, I want an album to strike me down with its inspiration and "Bloodcity" was lacking a lot of it.

The members consisting of Shadowsreign seem to be very good in terms of musicianship, unerring drumming, interesting bass lines, quality solos, they are here, but the songs are not so good as someone would expect because only qualified members won't actually make the difference, it's inspiration and emotion that makes it if you know how to interpret your instrument and this factor was definitely missing. The guitars have a heavy edge, you can find some inspired solos as well, whereas some others are just a nonsense show off, and there are times the riffing tends to have a more extreme way of expression embracing death/black metal soundscapes, don't expect something exaggerating though. The rhythm section is groovy and powerful, lending the ideal groove to the compositions, yet, the vocals are not something extremely good, they are common vocals, the grunting or screaming vocals are just fine, nothing less nothing more, and the clean ones are not the best you can find around, so... if an album lacks good vocal lines it immediately loses a huge part of its magic and the outcome is not the most ideal.

Let's see the songs one by one the way I personally found them. "The Bloodmaster" is an interesting upbeat death/black metal song that opens the album, neither something ground-breaking nor totally uninspired, just something in the middle, common and without personal identity. "Cult Of Lilith" is another interesting upbeat composition, quite atmospheric, I think the female vocals save it from being another boring song of the many in the album. "Salvation - Escape From Bloodcity" is worth only its 2:17-3:05 part, the best passage of the album in my opinion, the rest of it was boring and uninspired, I wasn't surprised really! The following "Far Away From The Sun" tries to achieve an interesting atmosphere/emotion, but in the end the song becomes something uninspired and boring and you don't recall a lot from it, so not exactly the song I'd love to listen to. "Bloodcity", "Reflections" and "The Cainian Brotherhood" are three more boring, non-memorable and of unknown reason of existence compositions, so pass them by at all costs. Something interesting starts going on with "Section 9-99 - The Colony", but still it requires guts and inspiration to write music that will remain, "My Destination" is the second more interesting song of the album which is actually good, I will be honest, it has a strong groove and rolling feeling, and finally, for the end of the album Shadowsreign kept a really wonderful song, "Dawn Of Rebellion", I think they had to compose something very good for themselves and for those who spent their money on this album.

By all means, try not to purchase this album, there are worst releases around for sure, but I'm sure even a masochist would prefer his money in his pocket rather than spend them on Shadowsreign. They have a long way to walk in order to become something better and worth-checking, good production and good musicianship won't help if they lack emotion and inspiration.

Performance: 7
Songwriting: 2
Originality: 5
Production: 7

Website: http://www.lordvampyr.it/


Written on 18.10.2006 by
"It is myself I have never met, whose face is pasted on the underside of my mind."
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Jason W. - 19.10.2006 at 07:51  
Yes, I really don't understand the 'gothic' label attached to this by some promotions or other reviews... it simply is not. This is not really an enjoyable listen as far as I'm concerned, because there is little natural flow between the songs. I don't know if I would rate it so low, but perhaps not much higher (the sound quality is rather decent IMO). Unfortunately for me, this CD comes off as a mess without a purpose... I, do, however, think there is some potential... it's just not realized yet... "Bloodmaster" is decent, and I enjoyed "Salvation - Escape From Bloodcity" particularly. I just wish the vocals were more controlled at times - there are numerous styles but not much focus unfortunately
Karl_Satan - 22.01.2008 at 15:51  
I quite agree with the rating.. this album was such a disappointment. Hope he comes to his senses and continues writing symphonic metal like he used to.

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