July 3, 2014 Evenoire – Herons (Album review)
Hailing from Cremona, Italy, symphonic gothic metal band Evenoire are one of a different breed. Founded in 2007, the band consists of vocalist and flautist Lisy Stefanoni, bassist Marco Binotto, drummer Daniele Foroni, guitarist Alessandro Gervasi, and newest member/guitarist Toshiro Brunelli. With an abundant amount of female fronted symphonic metal bands on the scene today, Evenoire are not a cheap copy, but an interesting hybrid combining medieval and folk tones to their music, spicing up the genre. Following the release of their successful debut in 2012 titled Vitriol, the band rebounds quickly with their follow-up Herons in April 0f 2014. Recorded at Dreamsound Studios in Munich, Germany, the album also features collaborations with countrymate keyboardists Filippo Sasha Martignano (Echotime) and Riccardo Studer (Stormlord, Hour of Penance).
Opening with a peaceful and beautiful flute solo, the title track begins the journey into the world of Evenoire. This immediately goes into the fast and heavy “Drops of Amber” featuring more subtle flute adding to the overall ambiance. Proceeding is the mind-blowing “Seasons of Decay” which shows what this band is capable of with epic and bombastic sound. Stefanoni’s voice soars to new heights as the guitars and synthesizers add full texture to the track. The next track, “Love Enslaves“, mixes heavy guitars with tender flutes for a mystical and intriguing vibe. Keeping the guitars even and clarified, crunching riffs and clean melodies burn on “The Newborn Spring” along with a catchy chorus that hooks the listener immediately. Moving into an absolutely mesmerizing atmosphere is “When the Sun Sets” with a flute snake charming melody along with vocals by Stefanoni which bounce through a variety of styles. The relaxed vibe of the song is one which stands strong as a highlight on the album.
Moving forward, “Tears of Medusa” is another powerfully heavy track featuring guest vocalist Linnéa Vikström of Therion. With guitars that get adrenaline flowing, Vikström’s backing high-pitched vocals add an extra emotion as she and Stefanoni feed off one another. Next, “Devil’s Signs” is a dramatic and more traditional symphonic metal song with Evenoire’s own personal touch that make it no less dull than the rest of the record. Boosting more of the folk flavor, “The Lady of the Game” exhibits poetic vocals that transport the listener into another land. Stefanoni’s angelic voice shines through, showing she is certainly a vocalist with a massive ceiling of potential. Starting off acoustically with arpeggios guitar notes, and a story telling flute solo, “Wild Females“ transforms into heavy guitars that possess a doom feeling with strong folk backing along with Celtic like singing of Stefanoni that is irresistible. The final offering of the album is the bonus track “Aries” which has a split personality of an aggressive and calmness. This most definitely shows the more gothic influence of Evenoire and is a worthy extra to the tracklist.
While Evenoire is an enigmatic band outside the underground genre, they have what it takes to be a successful international act. Herons is an excellent album that stands out above other female fronted bands in the genre with more than one tone keeping it free of dull moments. Even still, it is hard to stand out in the over saturated genre, but Herons is a fine example of well-composed music within the genre. Perhaps one of the most distinct aspects of Evenoire sepeating them from the rest is Stefanoni’s intense, colorful and personal voice. There is something very intriguing and mystical in their music that will draw the listener back to Herons over and over again. CrypticRock gives Herons 4 out of 5 stars.