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Absynth Aura - 'Unbreakable' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/b9/ca/f4/2249_absynthauraunbreakable_1338913429.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 05, 2012    
 
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Debut album by the female fronted quartet from Italy.

There are European MHR/melodic power metal bands with female voices and then there is the new Italian quartet, Absynth Aura. I have chosen to start my review in this fashion, because vocalist Claudia "Klod" Saponi is – IMHO - the greatest new vocal find in the metal female voices scene for many years. Her range, power, adaptability, lack of an accent and perfect pitch lift what might have been a pretty decent debut album onto a plateau to which like-minded bands can only aspire. Even so, ‘Unbreakable’ is still not the perfect article, for the band can improve upon certain aspects of this nevertheless impressive release, as I will mention later.

Lest my praise for “Klod” seem OTT, the rest of the band - comprising guitarist Michele "Dr.Viossy" Vioni , Giorgio "JT" Terenziani on bass, and drummer Marco "Mark" Renzi - display a level of integration and interaction in their performance that is quite remarkable on a debut release in support of their über-talented vocalist while “Dr Viossy” is also a hugely accomplished axe-meister, and adds some outstanding touches, embellishments and solos to ‘Unbreakable’.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The opening pairing of ‘Believe Me’ and ‘Desert Flower’ are two of the three heaviest songs on the album, redolent of a cross between Halestorm and Lacuna Coil. Apart from ‘Will Is Power’ here is nothing else like them here. An initially surprising change of tempo and style ushers in the magnificent, powerful ‘That’s Why You Die’ while ‘Smile’ a gorgeous MOR-ish, mid-tempo ballad really frames Klod’s voice tremendously. A weird start to the uptempo rocker ‘Understand My Fight’ makes one immediately take extra notice, and there’s some extraordinary brutal drumming here that some might relish! The atmosphere changes completely again for the rather soulful piano-based ballad ‘Looking For The One’ which mischievously I could imagine Elaine Paige singing! The powerful and emotive ‘Life’ is an absolute gem of a track and features clean male counterpoint vocals from Fabio Dessi (Arthemis). ‘The Fire In My Eyes’ is another that begins in off-kilter fashion, but turns out to have a “typical” Euro power metal vibe but also includes counterpoint quietly spoken sections: plus a truly wondrous guitar solo! The afprementioned ‘Will Is Power’ has Klod sounding remarkably like Joss Stone, and this one certainly has a “big sound” and “big choruses”…phew!! ‘Unbreakable’ is – at 6:33 - the longest track and is mainly a highly charged and bombastic monster. However, it does falter later on, and thus loses impact: a definite area for improvement next time around. Finally, there is a wonderful cover of The Cranberries ‘Zombie’ which I reckon knocks the original into a cocked hat!

I accept that there is a tremendous variety of material on display here, and therefore others might be less enthusiastic about ‘Unbreakable’ than am I, but I hope that those of you keen on female-fronted material of the types mentioned will find this well worth seeking out. You will not be disappointed, I guarantee!

Paul Jerome Smith

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