Reviews roundup – AngelSeed vs. Arcane Symphony vs. Elvis Costello vs. Imaginary People

91jl82bl9h4l-_sl1440_ANGELSEED
Crimson Dyed Abyss
Sliptrick

The debut album from a six piece, female fronted band from Croatia.  Can you guess what it is yet?  Yes!  They’re a symphonic metal band.  How did you manage to figure that one out?

So they’ve got some stiff competition out there, as it is the genre du jour of Eastern Europe at present.  But AngelSeed have got something going for them.  Granted, they’ve decided that early Nightwish is the best thing ever (and it is).  So, most of what you’re hearing, you’ve heard before.

But they have a few good songs, which power away in fine style.  Most of them are near the beginning of the album, so it does tail off a bit, but ‘Bloodfield’, ‘Dancing With The Ghosts’ and ‘Man With Black Roses’ are as good as anything else in the genre right now.  With a wee bit more time in the studio they could develop into something good, so give them a listen.

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51ik85goyul-_ss280ARCANE SYMPHONY
A New Day Begins
independent

Just for a change, we’re off to to Mother Russia to listen to a debut album from a female fronted band.  Can you guess what it is yet?  Yes!  They’re a symphonic metal band.  How did you manage to figure that one out?

They’re a new band with a short history but based on what’s here, they may well have a long future.  They don’t look so far back for their take on the genre, aiming more at early Lacuna Coil instead of Nightwish.  So they have a lighter take to their music.  But again, there are a few good songs here.

In this case, lend an ear to ‘Loneliness’, ‘Trust Yourself’ and ‘To Live Is to Love’ to get the best out of Arcane Symphony.  Again, they could use some more time in the studio to iron out some kinks, especially in the vocals, but they’re easily fixed.  Another one to file away in the could be good pile.

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61xsn6p2bf7l-_sl1200_ELVIS COSTELLO
Detour Live At Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
Eagle Vision

Oh.  Elvis Costello.  Never mind.  Someone else I don’t understand.  I esepcially don’t understand how he’s a thing.  His early stuff was terrible, his more mature stuff was worse, and the only decent thing he did was his almost country album.

But, apparently, he’s an institution these days, beloved of people with no taste and a subscription to the Guardian.  Apparently, the Detour tour allowed Costello to use a Storytellers style to talk about family, life and his career along with the stories behind such songs as ‘Watching the Detectives’, ‘Alison’, ‘A Good Year For the Roses’, ‘I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down’ and many others.

Which means it’s a lot of him on his tod.  At least the old songs stand up better than newer ones like ‘Church Underground’, which is an utter mess. Things do perk up when Larkin Poe pop up to harmonise on a few tunes, and a degree of musicality takes to the stage.  Otherwise, I can’t think of any reason to watch this. Ever.

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61d8klbtlrl-_ss280IMAGINARY PEOPLE
Dead Letterbox
Five Five Diamonds

On the subject of things I don’t understand.  Talking Heads.  And that’s the American band, not the splendid Alan Bennett monologues.

But some people go all moist at the thought of them, and I’m guessing that the assorted members of Imaginary People do likewise.  What else could explain the mysteries of songs like ‘Summerstock’ and ‘Agata’.  At least, I assume they are songs.  There are musical instruments being mistreated and a degree of what could be called singing.

Granted, there is a male walrus somewhere who would love the vocals of Dylan von Wagner, seeing them as an opportunity for some odobenus rosmarus styled rumpy pumpy, but outside that, and a guaranteed four star review in Mojo magazine, this is not the kind of thing that we should be encouraging.

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