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Downcast Art - Forbidden memories 4/5

Reviewed: 10-1-12


1. Everlasting
2. Bloodred ink
3. Miris proslosti
4. Home of silence
5. Forbidden memories
6. Face without a name
7. Whisper of a dying rose
8. Innocence never dies with desire
9. Chants from the deep
10. Downlight
11. Home of silence (piano version)

Downcast Art is a fairly young band out of Croatia, and they've really impressed me with this full-length debut 'Forbidded memories'. They're another one of those female fronted symphonic/gothic metal bands (with some slight power metal elements) easily comparable to Nightwish and the many other similar bands, but they excell in so many areas that it's hard to let them pass by without notice. Firstly, female vocalist Jelena Mužar is of the operatic type, coming off as a blend of Niobeth's Itea Benedicto and Adrana's Anae, and she provides a wonderful performance, balancing the powerfully symphonic and sometimes guitar-driven music perfectly.

While Jelena is present thoughout the CD's entirety, there are also some clean male vocals from Kristijan Radeka, who is the guitarist too. When he's singing, I'm reminded of bands like Catafalque, Satyrian, and early Theatre of Tragedy - especially 'Aegis'. It's not the style of this CD and the similarities to the aforementioned bands that make this CD special though, it's that the songwriting is at a high level and everything is so well done. From the great balance of tempo (containing both slow and fast parts, and everything in between), to the fairly raw and crunchy guitar work, to Jelena's soaring vocals, to the fantastic choruses that leave a lasting impression. Every song is excellent, and even the instrumental track 9 "Chants from the deep" is killer. Simply put, this doesn't sound like a debut, and it certainly doesn't sound like a CD from a fairly young band.

Yes, I know there are too many female fronted symphonic/gothic metal bands out there these days, but if you're at all interested in that area of the metal world, this is a CD that you need to check out. After all, isn't that the point of Metal CD Ratings? To help you find out which CDs (out of the many) are the best in each particular style? Well, at least that's what the crew is shooting for, and if we're succeeding, you're already heading off to hear samples of this excellent CD.




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