Siren’s Cry – Scattered Horizons

sirens-cry-scattered-horizons-20120625163404

Nightmare Records

Review by Rick Ossian

From the storied legends of Austria comes some pretty intense female-fronted symphonic metal, ala Tarja, Magenta or perhaps even Mostly Autumn. Vocals are provided by Katie, who is obviously a very intense key to the entire operation here. Her operatic acrobatics are on display on nearly every track. They can be extremely heavy at times, but we like that so no harm done there. A typical opener, Introitus, serves to let us know that we can expect some vain progginess, but to also be prepared for some BIG, production-style rock. Whispered words and haunting keyboards lead into a rather lengthy track, S3V3N, which, at 6-and-a-half minutes, would lead us to expect a synth-prog epic. Not necessarily so in this case. This is more of a class in rock riffs. There is also some fine shredding on the guitar, very cool vocals, and a wicked little keyboard solo at about four-and-a-half minutes in.

Oratory & Sins features a thrashy opening and more vocals. Katie’s voice is, again, almost haunting here, and we are also again treated to some particularly nice keys. There is a proggy breakdown of sorts and ‘monk’-style vocals at about the four-minute mark. An excellent finish as well.

On Elegy of R’lyeh, we get a slight change of pace. Another prog length epic (seven-and-a-half), this number contains some very pretty piano playing and a prophetic warning from our hero(ine) about ‘hav(ing) seen the black universe. There are some angelic vocals at work here as well, Katie particularly outdoes herself here. One could even say that this Elegy is a vocal tour-de-force. Keyboards, guitars and drums also play their parts.

In Draconian Spectrum, we are treated to some very heavy thrash and more ‘monk’-style vocals which turn slightly demonic. It features a good rhythm and some very heavy riffing. Cold Amber & Scalding Tears is another tune featuring haunting vocals and more pretty piano playing. This crew definitely are aware of their strengths and use them appropriately.

Sahara Sagas Part 1 is an exercise in prog epics. At nine-and-a-half minutes in length, it features five distinct, separate parts. So, a suite, then. (I. Overture- Sands of Time/II. Beyond the Veil/III. The Unravelling/IV. Shahryar The Great King/V. Astray). We begin with violins, flute, then absolute SHRED. Again, the vocals are somewhat haunting, even menacing at times. The guitar again comes to the fore, and there is an excellent solo at about 7:20. The exquisite piano playing and the ‘monk’-style/demonic vocals mark another return here as well.

On Serpents of War we find (at about 4:40) some heaviness with chunky guitar riff (s) and shredding. The vocals turn angelic, and the drummer (Frederic) gets very busy.  Keyboard whiz (Michael), guitarist (Phil) and bassist (Soren) all get their turns this time around.

The final epic piece here, A Controversial Mind, is another beautifully synchronized masterpiece, both vocally and instrumentally. The intro features some nice guitar strumming, and I hate to sound like a broken record here, but the vocals are expressly haunting. I was about to give these folks three stars, but this cut changed my mind and made me add a star!

So, if you are into bombastic, symphonic, Teutonic metal with heavenly female vocals, Siren’s Cry may very well be your cuppa for this time around. Enjoy!

Rating: ****/5

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