Fireworks

Aghast Afterglow - 'Imaging' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     November 18, 2016    
 
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The talent involved is obvious, and there's plenty to be admired.

Winning the coveted prize for the most nonsensical band name so far this issue* (what IS an Aghast Afterglow?!! - answers on a studded wristband to the usual address, please!), it comes as no surprise, given the name and album cover, that this is another Female-Fronted Symphonic Rock album. This lot are from Italy, hence the single track 'Muto Inconscio' in Italian, and have broken their recording duck with 'Imagining', diving into a quite crowded marketplace.

It's no great surprise that the album starts off with an eighty second instrumental (as without one, a band could get thrown out of the "Dramatic Rock Club"), though it's nice to hear one that actually has a bit of life in it, rather than just a minute of ethereal dullness. Opening track proper, 'You're Killing Me From The Inside', lets the listener immediately see what AA are all about. It's a solid, well-paced track with angry guitars and keyboards swirling around the good-but-not-great vocals of Lisa Lee.

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I can feel a certain amount of passion throughout the album, and although the opener is the standout track there's nothing here to make me feel any less of the band. Well, nothing until the quite (a)ghastly cover of Donna Summer's 'Hot Stuff' which closes the album, with Lee's accented English sounding like she's asking where she can find an Asda(!). Aside from this, 'Imaging' has plenty for the average Symphonic/Goth Metal fan to really get their teeth into; although my ears would have preferred a few more memorable choruses and some tracks that challenged Lee's vocals more.

Aghast Afterglow have spent several years polishing this album, and it certainly sounds pretty good. The talent involved is obvious, and there's plenty to be admired. That said, I hope the next album addresses the slight flaws in song structure, resulting in a more streamlined, catchy album with more mass appeal.

Alan Holloway

(* this review is from Fireworks Magazine #74)

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