Edenbridge – Solitaire (Napalm Records)

Tuesday, 19th March 2013
Rating: 8/10

Remember years ago when rarely a female singer cross into metal terrain? Sure, we cherish Doro Pesch and Leather Leone for their escapades, but the mid-to-late 90’s saw an explosion of femme fatale sirens thanks to the success of acts like Lacuna Coil, Nightwish and The Gathering. Forming in 1998, Austria’s symphonic metal act Edenbridge features another sophisticated lady on the microphone with Sabine Edelsbacher, and Solitaire represents their seventh studio record.

The songwriting and bulk of instrumentation duties are under the careful craftsmanship of Lanvall. as he handles guitars, bass, keyboards, and production. Musically, the quartet appear confident in exploring exotic, Middle Eastern passages, most notable in the doom march “Skyline’s End” where acoustic play sits side by side with an up tempo folk post chorus part. The heavier title track intertwines Lanvall’s guitar skills with versatile keyboard parts that aren’t merely filler symphonic silliness.

There are certainly tracks that have a distinct emphasis on comfortable melodies and hooks galore – the instantaneous “Higher” and “Come Undone” with Sabine’s higher register flexing certainly look like future crowd pleasers. Overall, Edenbridge emphasize more of a heavier philosophy than a lot of their Euro symphonic brethren, so do not fear feeling like you are listening to more of a gothic act, as even a ballad like “Out of This World” contains deeper, sweeping emotion that you rarely get in the movement.

If your collection contains equal parts from the European and American contingents, Edenbridge could be a welcome bridge to expand your horizons.

www.myspace.com/edenbridge

(This content originally appeared on Blistering.com)