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Celestial Crown : The Embraced

This album is not quite a release like most of the others that are subject to our reviews on this website. It starts off with an intro that contains mostly keyboard and spoken word, till guitars turn in at the end, and the voice transforms into a scream. Immediately after that, Celestial Crown reveals its true identity: They are not so much a mournful doom band, but combine slow, atmospheric, doomy parts, with raging symphonic black metal. Try to imagine some haunted slow keyboards, mixed with parts that remind of Cradle of Filth's 'Dusk... and her Embrace' album. I used the reference of Cradle of Filth before to describe this band. For some reason, they hit that same string with me. Is it the keyboards? The low parlando voice?

Two songs from their previous album ('Invasion of Suicidal Angels') have been re-recorded and are featured as tracks 4 and 5 on this album again. The sound quality is better than on the previous demo-album, which makes me suspect they put more time and efforts into that during these recordings.

I'm not always too fond of the vocals on this album, though I must say the grunts and most of the parlando vocals are very well done. Yet most of the time singer Denis uses a more black oriented high pitched scream, something I've gotten bored of lately. Absolutely thrilling are the keyboards though. They manage to play their supporting role very well, but stay on the background where the guitars come in. Also the female vocalist plays a rather minor role. Yet also her singing grew a lot stronger since the previous release. Much more volume, much more stability and certainty in the singing.

All in all this is an album that might be liked by the fans of symphonic black metal and music with a haunting, gothic horror atmosphere.

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. With the Autumn Winds
2. Dreams of Elizabeth
3. The Embraced
4. Your Touch
5. Nocturnal Insanity
6. Dark Dance
7. From Dance to Fall
8. Return to the Haunted Shores
9. Epitaph in Two Parts

Duration : Approx. 52 minutes

Visit the Celestial Crown bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Arnstein H. Pettersen
Vanha - Black Lion
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