Evarest - Fear 3.5/5
2. Searching for lost times
4. Lost race
5. For goddamned love
6. Hero's fate
8. River of death
9. Go away!
11. For goddamned love (promo version)
12. Pohroma (Czech Republic version of Requiescat)
Evarest is a new band from Czech Republic and 'Fear' is their full-length debut. It's also only the 2nd release from Farvahar Records (following Lunarium's full-length debut), so it's an important release for the label.
Well, one thing that has really stood out with 'Fear' is that there is a lot of speed and I'd definitely call Evarest a power metal band. The guitar work is quick, catchy, and has the perfect amount of bite to it, sure to please major power metal fans. There are also some fantastic guitar solos and the band is obviously full of skilled musicians, so their overall talent musically is easily competitive in the genre. There are some keyboard parts, sometimes upfront (there are some very cool solos!), but this is not really a symphonic CD and guitar work is certainly the band's focus.
Vocally, the band is fronted by Eva Markvartova, who is not of the operatic variety, but she does have a high-pitched voice that's quite unique. To be honest, this is the only aspect of the band that's had me a bit uncertain of the CD's overall quality, for me personally. I definitely consider her vocals to be at least decent (I wouldn't call her weak), but they border on whiney in spots, especially at the highly expressive parts. In addition, there are times when the music seems to overpower her a bit and her voice is echoing in the background. I know there will be some fans that won't like her performance at all, yet there will be others who will think she's good. Personally, she doesn't come close to ruining the CD, but there have been some spins where I'm simply not in the mood for her voice and my enjoyment of the CD has been brought down.
Regardless of how the vocals affect each individual spin of this CD, when I think about the band in its entirety, the comparisons that have come to mind are Amberian Dawn, Forgotten Tales, early Nightwish, Wildpath, Auspex, Dawn of Destiny, Fading Starlight, early Dark Moor and Operatika. I must emphasize however, that some of these bands are much more symphonic than Evarest, and some of them contain operatic vocals, though as already described, Evarest does not. So while I can't think of a direct band comparison, this list should still give you a general idea of where the band sits in today's massive metal world.
I can't really pick a favorite song off this CD, as they're all strong with killer guitar work, but I will mention that I really like the powerful side of track 7 "Requiescat", which is also track 12 "Pohroma" (the Czech Republic version). The one ballad, "For goddamned love", is hit or miss for me, as sometimes I find it to be a nice slow song that's in the perfect spot on the CD (right in the middle), though there are times when I'm not interested in hearing it, as the band's faster songs (which greatly dominate) are truly awesome. Also, I do like track 10 "Victory", which is an instrumental that gives off an emotional feeling and is well done.
To sum up, Evarest is a great new power metal band that has most of the ingredients in place, and all of them if you happen to be one of the metal fans that will like Eva's vocals. So all of you power metal fans should check out 'Fear', as it's a competitive CD that needs to be heard by many fans of the genre.
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