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Secret Rule - 'The Key To The World' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/cb/dd/18/Secret-Rule-The-Key-to-the-World-83-1527451747.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     May 27, 2018    
 
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If you're a Melodic Metal nut who likes Symphonic leanings, there may be enough in terms of the musicianship - especially the interplay of guitar - to pull you in.

It's album number three for these Melodic Metal rockers from Rome, a band hoping to inhabit the world of Amaranthe or fellow Italians Lacuna Coil. This latest release feels less Gothic and not as Symphonic as what has gone before. It's Metal with big chugging riffs, ripping Neo-Classical solos and Angela Di Vincenzo's big voice bringing some Pop, Rock and Symphonic elements, while the keyboards (courtesy of Henrik Klingenberg of Sonata Arctica fame) swirl around and plump up the sound. They also pull in some guests with Henning Basse (Firewind, Mayan) and Ailyn Giménez (ex-Sirenia) adding their skills to the proceedings.

Reviewing the band's last effort ('Machination' back in issue #75), I felt that while a lot of the intros and lead ups to the hooks were solid and often inventive, the hooks themselves failed to leave a lasting impression. I have to say I feel much the same way about this new album. Thirteen tracks are a lot to wade through without choruses to lift the music out of third gear. The production, as on the previous album, is good and does well to make a cohesive whole of these disparate influences, but without choral hooks that stick, the songs bleed into one another. Di Vincenzo can clearly hit those high notes, but you need to have a song to sing, and despite her ability to soar, at times I felt the vocals lacked a little of that well-known Latin passion.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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While the guitar work is chunky and fine, it's the keyboards that add much of the variety to the compositions; they swirl on 'Empty World', are Prog Metal-like on 'Lost Child', offer piano balladry on 'No More' and provide electronic Pop with a heavy Industrial bent on 'I'm You'. The atmospheric title track, the Metal attack of 'Twin Flames' and 'A Reverie', despite some wobbles, all have hooks that come the closest to working, whereas the slightly Eastern 'My Realm' just sounds uncomfortably high for Di Vincenzo.

Others have enjoyed the previous two offerings more than me, so if you're a Melodic Metal nut who likes Symphonic leanings, there may be enough in terms of the musicianship – especially the interplay of guitar – to pull you in. However, I remain unconvinced song-writing wise and wonder if Di Vincenzo is really the best fit for the band's sound.

Duncan Jamieson

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