Released: 2015, Revalve Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Gothic-Symphonic Metal outfit AGHAST AFTERGLOW have existed as a project since late 2010, originally starting as a duo but since growing into a full band. Debut album ‘Imaging’ was released in 2015 by Revalve Records and is steadily gaining attention.
Instrumental intro ‘Fearless’ opens with a music box intro leading into synth orchestration before closing a music box outro. The industrial beginning of ‘You're Killing Me from Inside’ is in sharp contrast but this is soon replaced by a piano punctuated swirling mash of strings and guitar. Vocals here and throughout are a mix of Cristina Scabbia and Amy Lee, with the overall sound is more towards the rock end of the spectrum. The Lacuna Coil comparison leads me to think they sound Italian and upon checking the bio I find this to be correct. ‘Angels Can't Love’ is a duet with Mark Basile from Italian prog/power metal band DGM but this doesn’t stand out as much as expected for a track featuring a guest vocalist and is overshadowed by other songs, such as the brooding ‘Stolen Dreams’. The band have created a slick video for ‘There’s No Time’ no doubt due to its catchiness. ‘When Will Winter Come Back’ is be a good candidate for another worthy of the youtube attention. ‘Stream of Awareness’ is the most symphonic of the album and includes some interesting synth effects.
With no song longer than 5:30 you will be presented with fresh and accessible 9 songs at the mainstream end of the gothic symphonic metal spectrum. A full listen to the album is rewarded with an entertaining rock cover of Donna Summer’s ‘Hot Stuff’.
Against the already large number of female fronted symphonic goth-metal acts to choose from they do not stand out that much. Their press bio compares them to Epica and Nightwish but those looking for bombastic orchestration and choirs will be disappointed. This is a good release than they will gather many fans of their own, but it is difficult to stand out against the established bands without possessing a new angel on an over-subscribed genre.
Review by Victoria Fenbane