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Footprints In The Hourglass
Released: 2017, Lion Music
In a review I wrote early this month, I noted that the sub-genre of female-fronted, operatic, symphonic, neo-classical Metal is very crowded. Operose is another example of a new entry into this massive and still expanding sub-set of Metal. In a bit of a coincidence both bands in this style that I reviewed this month (Operose and Selene) are both trio’s, both from the UK, and in an even more odd coincidence, they both have an hourglass on the front of their cover art.
FOOTPRINTS IN THE HOURGLASS is the debut album by Operose who were signed right out of the gate to the Lion Music label. Operose combine the symphonic and progressive very nicely into great set of songs running a little under an hour. The collection of songs is bookended nicely by two long, songs each over 10-minutes in length, each with it’s strengths and character.
Vocalist Coleman is a tremendous operatic/soprano styled singer with great clarity and range. She is certainly a major asset to the band. She sings songs with a slightly metaphysical bent, songs such as ‘River of Memories’, Empty Mirrors’ and ‘Stand Among Angels’. In the last song she has a wonderful segment of what is almost a vocal solo accompanied only by gentle acoustic piano, before some really heavy-duty Prog-Metal and shred kicks back into the mix. The abrupt sonic transition could be considered by some listeners to be a bit jarring but I like it. The songs are well-composed, not too conventional and not too fast and heavy either, although are certainly heavier elements all across the album reminding us they are a Metal band. The pace is a little slow too mid-pace with the occasional flurry. The drums are actually quite busy which I also appreciate.
The production is very good, everything is nice and clear and Coleman is mixed up front which I like as it accentuates her beautiful voice. I’m very pleased with this release and this young band is a good as any in the busy genre. I hope many will gravitate towards Operose as one of their favorites.
1. Empty Mirrors (Death of Eurydice)
3. River of Memories
4. The Long Grass (Seconds Apart)
5. Remember Me
7. The Faded Portrait of Affection
8. Stand Among Angels
Kevin Deplanche Drums
Joe McGurk Guitars, Bass
Jennifer Coleman Vocals
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