Rabies - Drop in infinity 3.5/5

Reviewed: 11-1-12





Tracklist:

1. War
2. Return
3. Wings
4. Secret of horus
5. Dead forest
6. Duel
7. I’m leaving
8. Enough
9. Soot


Rabies is a symphonic gothic/power metal band from Russia and this is their debut studio CD. About half of the songs are epic, bombastic symphonic gothic metal and the other half are upbeat, rocking, crunchy symphonic power metal. Due to the huge symphonic keys the gothic metal often has a majestic epic movie score feel, while some of the riffs and the clean guitar leads and runs frequently give it a somewhat traditional metal feel. The symphonic power metal is faster, busier and catchier than the gothic metal, with crunchier riffs and a greater focus on the vocal melodies; almost every song features a memorable anthemic chorus and there is a beautiful power ballad.

Their female vocalist, Vladislava Solovyova, has an operatic style typical of these genres, but hers is quite a bit more diverse and versatile than usual. She effortlessly transitions from an enchantingly beautiful mezzo-soprano to an earnest, strongly penetrating alto, with a soaring, exhilarating delivery that usually dominates the songs. Although she sings everything in Russian (the tracklist has been translated), her melodies are engaging, musical and memorable, and she often reminds me of Tarja Turunen at her best. There are mild death vocals on a few songs.

The obvious comparisons to Rabies are Epica, early After Forever and Tarja-era Nightwish. This is both the strength and weakness of ‘Drop in infinity’; on the one hand, there is absolutely nothing original to be heard at all, but on the other hand every song is unusually well crafted and involving, and it is a joy to hear Vladislava sing. Although well crafted, the songs are short – indeed, the last song is actually a brief symphonic outro so the CD ends up containing only about 30 minutes of music. There is no doubt that most of these songs could have been profitably extended a bit so the listener doesn’t have the impression that the CD is over almost as soon as it begins. That said, Rabies have an excellent sense of writing and performing absorbing symphonic metal songs and ‘Drop in infinity’ will certainly appeal to dedicated fans of the previously mentioned bands.



CHRIS




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