Rating:
6.5
Eldritch - Tasting The Tears
17 February 2014


01. Inside You
02. Tasting The Tears
03. Alone Again
04. Waiting For Something
05. Seeds Of Love
06. The Trade
07. Something Strong
08. Don't Listen
09. Iris
10. Love From A Stone
11. Clouds
12. I Will Remember [Queensrÿche cover]


Eldritch's thrash fuelled sound isn't your garden variety power metal, and they've never really seemed to fit any of the stereotypes of the genre, always presenting albums which are significantly heavier and more progressive than the norm. A unique band with a distinctive sound is what they are, which they continue to present on album in their latest record Tasting The Tears, albeit to mixed results.

Having taken their name from an old Watchtower track entitled "The Eldritch," which is from their second album Control And Resistance, these Italians have since put out a lengthy catalogue containing albums which merge power metal melodies with a thrashing intensity, which, for all intents and purposes sounds quite progressive. Naturally their sound was quite thrash based in their early days, hence their name's inspiration, and Eldritch have managed to maintain their unique style throughout the years.

Their latest record Tasting The Tears is a step that revisits their complex approach whilst also making a move to the more melodic side of their sound, with a significant refocusing on chorus lines and the performance of vocalist Terence Holler. Providing a characteristic voice for the band, his stylings seem all the more important for Eldritch at this point. Although the metal blend of thrash and power remains, both become more homogenised within the sound, which is given a very full treatment given the high quality production.

Typically, any "straightforward" thrash segments take a backseat throughout this album. Mind you, this is a backseat which does provide a strong supportive basis for many of the tunes here, with some intensely potent moments scattered throughout, however the vocal performance is the spotlight's focus.
This band's output has been one which generally flies under the radar of many melodic metal fans, understandably this is down to their deliberately knotty approach to song writing in their late 90's efforts, which pride an irregular kind of thrash as an underlying structure and works their melodic sensibilities around thrashing tempos and riffs. In other words their sound was originally far from the standard approach taken by many bands within the power metal genre.

This knotty nature makes something of a comeback in the song structures of this new record, the guitars working in heavily syncopated and jutting patterns just as much as emphasising accessible vocal lines, which bring out some of the corniest lyrics the band have offered to date, occasionally placed with piano accompaniment such as in "Iris". These two aims at offering something more complex, as well as something more vocally appreciable, seems to split things down the middle; the album comes across as conflicted and the song writing is generally sloppy as a result, despite tight performances.

Some of their most recent material benefitted from less complicated thrash passages, and albums such as "Neighbourhell" and "Blackenday" can be described as a melodic kind of thrash. Such is all but absent here, as the thrash comes across as heavily convoluted and difficult to distinguish in the album's mass of layering and the band's bid to sound not only melodically accessible, but also progressively complex.

Tasting The Tears is well produced and performed, however the song writing ultimately leaves a lot to be desired, despite the attempt to shake up the band's sound once more and revisit old intentions as well as present something fresh.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 5
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Eldritch
Album: Tasting The Tears


 



Written on 24.03.2014 by
R'Vannith
R'Vannith enjoys music, he's hoping you do too.
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