Album Review: Dreams in Fragments – “Reflections of a Nightmare”

Dreams In Fragments - Reflections of a Nightmare

After making a hard left on symphonic and gothic metal around 2014 and going straight off the deep end, I figured the genre was as good as dead. Given the saturation of it, I became jaded and decided to stick to bands that I knew and loved. Over the years, I have seen bands come and go in this genre and while some have done things differently by changing their sound, others have been using the same tropes. When I heard of Dreams In Fragments and their latest album Reflections of a Nightmare, I was hoping for new things – a change in the beauty/beast vocal trope, new tones embedded in the music, and maybe a new approach to the genre. Every year, I am disappointed with new bands and unfortunately, this one is no exception to the rule. Continue reading

Second Circle: Ghost Ship Octavius and Mortanius

second circle - ghost ship octavius and mortanius

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

We’re still early in the music season, and it’s been a hot minute since we talked about power metal here on the site, despite my promises to the contrary.  Happily, not only has February started to bring a few promos to the inbox, but it also brought a theme, with two bands whose names end in “-ius” which is enough for me to get off my ass and do a Second Circle.  So without further ado let’s dive into Ghost Ship Octavius and Mortanius. Continue reading

Album Review: MaterDea – “Pyaneta”

MaterDea - Pyaneta

Over the years, symphonic metal has remained stagnant, allowing bands that have remained in the game to continue releasing albums while new, fledgling bands have to stand out by incorporating new elements in the tried-and-true method of operatic vocals and death growls. In short, it’s a battleground where bands have to prove they have staying power. Now, that doesn’t mean that bands have to add new things in order to stand out – sometimes, having the same formula in your albums is better than throwing different elements at the wall to see what sticks. In the case of MaterDea, their fifth release Pyaneta does a little bit of both, eventually changing into something more cohesive and consistent. Continue reading