• Feather Crow - Arlekin Memories (2012)


    This brand new band comes from Mexico City? Well, that sounds rather exotic, I should try this out! The band is composed by five women that perform vocals, guitars, bass, drums and keyboards? Great, an all female band could sound rather interesting! The vocals and lyrics are mostly in Spanish? That’s another reason for me to give this release a few spins as I really appreciate languages and am glad to hear something other than just English vocals. The band plays a gothic rooted version of symphonic metal? That’s very fine because both genres are among my favourite ones.

    As you can see, there were many motivations for me to check out the thirty minutes long debut release of the Mexican band Feather Crow that is entitled “Arlekin Memories”. Despite a really open-minded attitude and some enthusiasm, I though got quickly disappointed. Almost everything about this band is bad. The production is thin and way too old school but this wouldn’t be too bad as what we have here is still a self-produced debut release. The vocals remind me of a less expressive and quite thin version of Within Temptation’s Sharon Den Adel. This sounds not too bad in the first few songs and the singer definitely has some potential but it gets rather redundant after a while.

    What really makes this release a flop is the mostly faceless song writing and the ordinary instrumental performance. Especially the guitar riffs are thin and lack energy. The bass guitar is not much audible as well. The drumming is exchangeable and lacks diversity and dynamics. The keyboards are well performed but far too dominant which makes them sound rather artificial instead of adding an atmospheric background note. The most ridiculous parts of the album are the incredibly bad black metal vocals in a few songs. I have no clue if they are performed by some of the female members or by a guy but they just sound plain bad. I don’t even understand any word of what this thing is yelling in the microphone. It’s not because I don’t speak Spanish. If these sick growls had been done in English, French, German, Japanese, Latin, Mandarin Chinese or Russian I wouldn’t have understood a thing as well. Add to this that the vocals don’t harmonize well with the main singer. The final result only gets worse instead of adding some diversity which was probably the main goal.

    In the end, there is not much interesting about this release. The production and the keyboards sound cheap. The riffs are exchangeable and the drumming lacks energy. The vocals are thin but have at least some potential. The song structures are mediocre and the tracks lack of memorable parts. Maybe one and a half songs of this release are at least listenable but that’s it. Just avoid this at all costs. This band adds nothing new to the genre and is a lot less impressive than one might think at first sight.

    Originally written for The Metal Observer


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