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Coburg - The Enchantress (2017) - Review

Band: Coburg
Album title: The Enchantress
Release date: 24 October 2017
Label: Evolve Or Die Records

01. A Cold Day In Hell
02. Echoes In The Night
03. The Hall Of Ghosts
04. Into The Darkness
05. Requiem
06. The Enchantress
07. Thy Dagger
08. Till The Bitter End
09. Warrior's Blood
10. Rise

Coburg might sound like a new name on the scene, that's true, but the members involved in this band are all experienced musicians who already showed their talents in various bands. First of all, Coburg was initially formed by Anastasia Coburg under the monicker Jet Noir, making some intriguing dark electronic music, then there were some complications around the name and we got Coburg, which is totally different from what she was doing in the beginning of her musical career. The beautiful Anastasia is better known as being since 2013 a keyboard player in UK's pioneers of electro-punk-goth Naked Lunch, and she's also working as a photo model and actress (you should really check out her photos, she's amazing!). Ok, Anastasia composed almost all of the songs on this album by herself, except of few which were done in collaboration with keyboardist/backing vocalist Dean Baker (also in Galahad and Twelve Night). Beside Anastasia and Dean, Coburg consists of bass guitarist Mark Spencer (Galahad, Twelve Night), guitarist Sarah Sanford (Jet Noir), drummer Pietro Coburg (Jet Noir) and since recently also Tony Mayo (Naked Lunch) joined as a percussionist/vocalist, but Tony wasn't involved in the album.

The Enchantress is a satisfying debut, not something that you would expect from Anastasia, but since the amazing single "Requiem" (also featured on this album), released almost two years ago under the monicker Jet Noir, the things started to crystalize a bit. Coburg can be stylistically described as a mix of various genres, you have hard rock, symphonic rock, gothic metal, electronic rock, pop-rock, some progressive rock and yet much more. This eclectic, but at the same time very cohesive sound offered by Coburg is pretty original, don't fear that you'll get just another female fronted symphonic rock/metal derivate, no, the thing with Coburg is far more interesting.

On The Enchantress we can listen to ten very diverse and often dynamic songs. Coburg don't exagerate with any of the elements mentioned above, one of the stand out things is absolutely strong but at the same time emotive Anastasia's voice, which I find like a hybrid between Doro, Kate Bush and Lady Gaga. There are plenty of nice orchestral and symphonic arrangements, heavy guitar riffing, some intriguing guitar leads, fine melodic lines and powerful rhythmic line, adding certain tiny Middle-Eastern parts, piano insertions, gloomy synths, yet everything is well flowing and sometimes truly captivating. While there are many mood changes the band keeps the pace often mid-paced.

From the more catchy but still powerful song like is the opener "A Cold Day In Hell" on, we are thrown in quite an adventurous sonic world, even though every single songs stands on its own territory. The highlight of the album is absolutely the stunning hit "Requiem", blending heaviness with elegant symphonic metal, romantic pop rhythms and dark/gothic rock, yet enriching everything with some subtle electronics, also great guitar solo in here, simply beautiful and it wouldn't be strange if you'll be whispering the refrain for a long time after hearing it. As well we get some pretty energetic songs like is the turbulent heavy rocking "Echoes In The Night" or dark captivating and mystical ones like is the album title track "The Enchantress". There are of course some mellow songs, or better said parts of the songs, like in a bit strange out of place "Thy Dagger", but that can be forgiven when Coburg hits with the epic, over eight minutes long versatile and dramatic "Warrior's Blood", which I believe that none of well known heavy metal bands would be ashamed of, or when the band is toying with some ambiental electronic stuff and right dose of psychedelia in otherwise fantastic rocking smasher "Into The Darkness". I found very interesting as well the sorrowful, rather theatrical and moody, nicely building up in tension "Till The Bitter End", great orchestral insertion at the end of this one, and got all emotional when the evocative closing one, "Rise", begun to spin.

Coburg did a very good job on this debut album, I might be missing a bit of density and richness, but nevertheless, the songs have the necessary pathos and flow. The album is dynamic and it's almost impossible to get bored while listening to it. I certainly expect Coburg to evolve further, but for the beginning of their musical journey this is a truly good start. The Enchantress is one of those albums that could satisfy pretty varied sort of listeners, from those into symphonic metal, heavy metal, gothic rock/metal, hard rock, electronic rock and yet much more. Give it a listen, I believe that you'll find at least a couple of songs in here that will satisfy your listening needs.

Review written by: T.V.
rating: 8/10