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Merciful Nuns - Thelema VIII
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- Hypaerion
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Random album

Zephyra - Kämpaglöd [EP] (2013) - Review

Band: Zephyra
Album title: Kämpaglöd
Release date: 6 February 2013
Label: Self/Released

Tracklisting:
01. Route 611
02. Forced Family
03. Pessimist
04. Release My Anger
05. Imprisoned Queen
06. Kämpaglöd (Instrumental)

Some of you might say that this doesn't belong on Terra Relicta, but we don't limit ourselves that strong on musical genres. Anyway, Zephyra is Swedish female fronted band which warned the metal scene about them with their first EP entitled First Blood, which was self-released in 2012. Now we have in front bands second studio effort, another EP with a title Kämpaglöd and containing six songs that in a way show a step forward from their first one, but I must admit that some things that I enjoyed on their First Blood EP are missing on this one. Of course the band shows with their mix of progressive, melodic, thrash and dark metal a lot of talent and they are able to be really agressive, but also emotional and somehow obscure.

First of all we must notice great guitar work by Tony, as it be with all great melodic lines as with leads and thrasy riffs. Åsa is a great singer, her vocal range can deal with harsh lines, sometimes similar to Angela Gossow from Arch Enemy, and clean lines, that reminded me in a way to Christina from Lacuna Coil. This combination makes the music interesting and gives it a nice drive, the only problem is when Tony tries to sing on some occasions and he ruins the feeling and I believe that the band should leave vocal duties just to Åsa. In an interesting way Zephyra inserts progressive elements and tiny, more atmospheric, dark parks, just like in the opener "Route 611", with a part that is almost kind of black metal-ish. Bass lines are not that evident, only on second track "Forced Family" we can hear that Tobias is amazing at what he does. Still the strong point remains the melody, catchy riffs and last two tracks "Imprisoned Queen" and "Kämpaglöd" are breathtaking. Especially the last one, EP titled instrumental with its emotional Metallica ("Orion" comes in mind) inspired riffs blew me away. I missed up here a song like it was on previous EP "Inside Revealed", where the band showed how beautiful and strong emotional ballads they can make. Still Kämpaglöd includes a lot of interesting parts that can push the band from underground into more visible and well deserved place in the metal scene.

Zephyra are another band that deserves your full atention if you are into melodic thrash metal, with lots of diversity and power. They should only work a bit more on production - it's somehow too dry, find a better drummer and like I said before, leave the vocal duties just to amazing Åsa. Fans of bands like Arch Enemy, Dark Tranquility, Nevermore, Metallica, Lacuna Coil, Pantera shall not wait any longer and grab this piece of music. For now I will be curiously waiting in which direction the band will go on their awaited full lenght. (Check out song by song commentary by Åsa to get more insight HERE)

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 7,5/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band: Arcturus
Album title: Arcturian
Release date: 8th May 2015
Label: Prophecy Productions

With the underlying black metal roots, Arcturian delivers such a grand surprise by simply overblowing all the inserted stylistic elements to a point, when you may feel all will explode. But it does not. Not only rich orchestrations, use of various string instruments and piano melodies found their way to fit perfectly into the picture, Arcturus went modern old school, and even added a fair amount of dubstep. The peculiar inclusion of electronica is not in any way abusive of the sound, but it rather gives it a hypnotizing and mysterious note and deepens the profound atmosphere of it. With razor-sharp guitar arrangements, blasting drumming and ICS Vortex's dramatic vocal work, Arcturian is just what we love about this band: bizarre, deranged and schizophrenic, even diabolical and wildly obscure at moments. With so many various elements being intensified to its maximum point, Arcturian is all in all a straight-forward, extremely cohesive and swirling work of art. Its core may be askew, but its atmosphere stretches from ghastly to romantic, from stygian to lucent and is from the first to the last note deeply vigorous.


Read a full review HERE