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On disc: Silent Fall

Otherwise - Claudia Ehrhardt - 8 stars


(Pitch Black Records - 2010)

Some will know French band Winterland which was founded 2005, they renamed in 2009 and now release their debut via Pitch Black Records as Silent Fall. Winterland released an EP called The Snow Begins To Fall - and 3 songs made it onto Otherwise.
With piano they kick off Who Is The Fool?, but after a few moments the band joins in and the opener becomes a melodic power metal tune. Even if the keyboard pops up here and there, it's a guitar-driven track. With Kill For Life they present the first Winterland track, as I don't know the EP I can't tell you, if they changed anything. During the refrain some harsh backing vocals are added, but the French also show that some progressive influences. A more balladesque tune is Haunted Sights, the guitar riffs are accompanied by keyboard sounds with give it a touch of EBM... But this is one is far from being a danceable tune with electro beats. Lead guitarist Olivier Caron shows his skills in a short solo and song supportive way, he's also responsible for the harsh backing vocals. Forever And Ever is another 'old' tune, a melodic power metal tune in the vain of bands like Sonata Arctica, Stratovarius and Heavenly. At One Cold Winter Night they slow down a bit and present a mid-paced track which surprises with twists and turns. One of the highlights on Otherwise! At the end of Play With Fire the harsh vocals are used as a counter part to the lead vocals. Nice idea, even if not everybody will like it. At World Of Secrets Adagio's Stephan Forté adds a solo, another catchy tune which is based in powerful melodic metal, but is spiced up with symphonic sounds, electro beats and harsh vocals. At This Could Have Been singer Adrien Eyraud is joined by Wildpath's Marjolaine Bernard on mic. The duet makes this balladesque track stick out. Heavy riffs and hammering drums lead you into Tears Of Fate. With On The Top Of The World the album comes to an end, but both the CD and the download version have a bonus track - thanks to Pitch Black Records for adding them to the digi-promo! The CD bonus track is called Heroes where the keyboard is more prominent. The song is just shy of 5 minutes, but somehow they lost me on the way.... The digital version has the opener Who Is The Fool? in an alternate version called 'black version'. The song gets a totally different feel with the black-ish screams who accompany the clean, melodic vocals. But they didn't turned it into a black metal song! But I guess this one won't please the majority of melodic power metal fans...
A more then decent power melodic metal album where the French try to cross boarders. Sometimes it works, sometimes not that well. Singer Adrien Eyraud should try to vary a bit more in future...

8 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


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