Released: 2007, Century Media Records
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland
Imagine Bob Rock starting his own band that sounds like BLACK ALBUM-era Metallica. That is kind of what European uber-producer Waldemar Sorychta has done with his new project, Eyes of Eden. An accomplished musician and songwriter himself with Grip, Inc., Sorychta’s production ear has given bands like Sentenced, Therion, Moonspell and Samael their signature sound, but he is best known for his work with Lacuna Coil. On FAITH, swelling crescendos, glossy production and multi-layered female vocals blanket a seemingly endless supply of melodic hooks. Sound familiar? Well, it is since FAITH is basically a Lacuna Coil album sans the pointless male vocals. For her part, Franziska Huth captures all the breathy, Goth-tinged tones of Cristina Scabbia and Liv Kristine only reedier and far less powerful. The riffs are pretty good but nothing stands out and the whole package really seems like it stalls before it even began. It is difficult to recommend FAITH, not because it is a substandard album but moreso for the fact that Eyes of Eden sounds like Sorychta has plagiarized himself and every band he has ever worked with, then churned out a second-tier version of COMALIES hoping to ride some of its success.
Programmed string sections are everywhere here to boost up the musical palette. “Sleeping Minds,” “Star” and “Daylight” ride a swelling boom of violins and cellos that augment the thick riffing of Sorychta. Behind it all, HIM’s Gas Lipstick pummels away and even throws in a few moments of double-bass muscle on “From Heaven Sent” and “When Gods Fall” that teases the acoustic guitar flourishes. “Man In The Flame” could fool any casual fan into believing it is a new Lacuna Coil song (and a pretty good one, at that) with a tinkling keyboard and a subtle Middle Eastern vibe to Huth’s heavily-processed vocals. Additionally, if the throaty wails of Huth aren’t clue enough, “When Gods Fall” features some female-to-male vocal trade-offs during the chorus that will draw further comparisons. Thankfully, Huth avoids the current trend of baby-doll/growled vocals of labelmates The Agonist and In This Moment and the operatic pretensions of a band like Nightwish but there are still just too many similarities here to Lacuna Coil that are impossible to get past.
For what it’s worth, FAITH is a pretty solid album of mid-paced melodic Gothic metal. The vocals are good, the hooks are there and everything is musically-sound. Eyes of Eden have crafted an enjoyable album that will appeal to fans of the genre. However, many will be turned off by the unmistakable similarities to the vastly superior Lacuna Coil. Why listen to FAITH when I already have COMALIES and KARMACODE? There may be an audience here for those who wish the guy who screams in Lacuna Coil would just bugger off and let Cristina Scabbia do her thing, though.
KILLER KUTS: “Winter Night,” “When Gods Fall,” “Star,” “Man In The Flame”