Minstrelix - Reflections 3.5/5
1. Spiritus mundi
2. Lost sanctuary
3. Thirst for
7. Sky flame
8. Light casts a shadow
It was only last year that I reviewed Minstrelix's debut 'Memoirs', and they're already back with their 2nd CD 'Reflections'. For those who missed my review of their debut, Minstrelix is a Japanese power metal band that's fronted by a female American vocalist - Lola. Just like with the debut, she reminds me of Sonia Pineault from Forgotten Tales, but she's also comparable to some of the Japanese female vocalists, at least the ones that aren't extremely high-pitched. I personally like her voice and I think she sounds a bit better on this CD, although the difference is minor.
One of the things that stood out on the debut was the incorporation of some Jazz parts, which even though there weren't very many, added a unique element that really did stand out. Those parts are now gone with this 2nd CD, and to me, it's neither a good or a bad thing. Another slight difference between 'Memoirs' and 'Reflections' is that this CD is more aggressive, and for those who love the typical and quick Japanese guitar work, know that this CD is sure to impress you. There's seriously a lot of speed, and there are also some raspy male vocals that pop up at the end of the CD to add some more aggressiveness.
For overall comparisons, and just like the debut, this CD reminds me of the CDs from bands like Forgotten Tales or early Dark Moor, but many others could certainly be mentioned - Auspex, Inspire and Evarest off the top of my head. Basically, if you're a fan of female fronted power metal, this is a band you should look into, as they share similarities with many other bands. I personally think they're one of the better female fronted Japanese power metal bands, with Inspire currently leading the pack.
Unfortunately, this is a short CD at just under 40 minutes, but I think it's a little better than the debut, so the band is headed in the right direction. My favorite song is track 7 "Sky flame", as it has the best chorus and is the most memorable, but the CD is quite consistent as far as quality. So if 'Reflections' sounds interesting, or if you have and like 'Memoirs', I recommend grabbing this.
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