Blodwen
Black Symphony


3.5
great

Review

by Zedo Kei USER (51 Reviews)
May 6th, 2012 | 4 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Black Symphony is great first step, or debut. Blodwen's fans must be curious what kind of the goods in their second step...

Although in a few music-forums some people defined Blodwen as symphonic/neo-classical power metal band, but at the same time it's also pretty fair to define them as symphonic-rock due to their partly easy listening songs with lot of rock influences. Then, about neo-classical addressing, probably it's because of Blodwen's lead guitarist Alexander Lexy who might be a bit reminiscent of Yngwie's sound style. Therefore, Black Symphony is quite suitable for people from a background inside hard-rock or heavy-metal genre in general. And also, despite Blodwen is Jakarta-based band, their female lead vocalist Bernice Nikki is from Japan. This is great approach, considering that Japan has a biggest metal scene in Asia. So, who knows Nikki would be able to gather her Japan-based fans. while Indonesia itself, arguably has a biggest metal scene in South East Asia region only - this such milieu is more than enough to keep the band alive and survive.

Black Symphony contains 12 tracks with the styles or atmosphere within range of symphonic power metal, hard-rock, and neo-classical touch. The tracks such as World As One, Midnight Fairytales, and Into The Darkness, are great songs and deserve a highlight. People soon will recognize that Blodwen is successful to manage the songs not only speed or power aspect of metal but also tasteful and catchy side of rock. Then songs such as Cry Out To Me, Flower Song, and Two Notes, are predominantly low-tempo tracks, sometimes in one or two short passages, Blodwen also delivered them in mid-tempo. While track Cry Out To Me is pretty strong and has its own character, another two songs are pretty standard, not so special, except from the beginning of the album the listener already felt in love with Nikki's vocals. Then, tracks such as White Noise and Night - Black Symphony, basically the tracks where Blodwen is adequately fair to define as neo-classical metal act, especially White Noise, hmm, it's so Yngwie-ish! There are also two tracks sung in Japanese and Indonesian; Your Wings (Japanese Version) and Pengakuanku (My Confession). Your Wings is predominantly low to mid-tempo delivery, and as whole it's actually well-delivered with a lovely voice. Yeah, this is because of Japanese is Nikki Bernice's first language. On the contrary side, Pengakuanku has a minor flaw; her vocals articulation a bit sucks, although musically it has no problem at all! What a poor Nikki, she seems try hard to articulate such a hard Indo's words. However, especially for Indonesian fans, this such articulation is pretty understandable and forgivable. Beside that all, Blodwen also added into the album two beautiful instrumental versions, Your Wings (Romantic Guitar Version) and Night - Black Symphony (Orchestral Version).

On the subject of Blodwen's musicianship, this female-fronted band could stand-out themselves among many acts of the such genre. Lead vocalist Bernice Nikki has strong vocals signature. Her soprano delivery, possibly will remind people to both Tarja Turunen (ex-Nightwish) and Sharon Den Adel (Within Temptation). The best way to describe; just imagine that the vocals of Tarja and Sharon in unison, but with a bit oriental-accent addition. So there it is Nikki's vocals style. Then about guitarist Alexander Lexy, beyond question, he is the man behind Blodwen's musical works. His awesome and proficient guitar solos, should be one of the reasons why people should check this Black Symphony out! Along with Marcellus on rhythm guitar, Alexander Lexy has a more space to show off the skills - people would find memorable riffs and rhythms from this pair guitarist. The bass, without being so finicky, people will accept it - it's fairly well-mixed, and also pretty audible. Keyboards and drums, honestly, Blodwen has a lot works to do and improve upon these sections. Keyboards, like or dislike, for this such genre, it's a bit disgrace if a band predominantly delivered it in such a common or standard play. And drums, so far it's pretty standard - far from being a special thing. However, with all respect, as band unit Blodwen actually is well established.

In closing, within the course of about 54 minutes of music, this debut is pretty good stuff. A part of the album is quite great in quality, while another part is only a step above generic or average stuff, despite it's also enjoyable. This is fine first step for Blodwen to begin their musical journey. With this Black Symphony "ammunition" on their hands, Blodwen seemed ready to stand-out among countless symphonic metal acts out-there. So, welcome to "metal-jungle", Blodwen!

***

Recommended Tracks:

- World As One
- White Noise
- Into The Darkness
- Cry Out To Me
- Midnight Fairytales

[b]Blodwen[/i]'s Line Up:

Alexander Lexy – Lead Guitar, Keyboards
Bernice Nikki – Vocals, Keyboards
Marcellus "Cell" – Rhythm Guitar
Ronald Mikhail – Drums
Ivan Tandi – Bass



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user ratings (1)
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
ZedO
May 6th 2012


1096 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Imo, tracks Into The Darkness, World As One, and White Noise, are the strongest (my favorite). It's real a shame that Blodwen didn't stream 'em in myspace. However, if you want to check out other few songs, here is the link;

- http://www.myspace.com/blodwenband


SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
May 6th 2012


4442 Comments


Another great review, Zed. Your summary reads a little odd, but I think I've heard you state that English isnt your first language. Your english is really good, better than half the people I've met and I was raised in England.
Anyway have a POS.

CaptainDooRight
May 6th 2012


29881 Comments


I agree you're doing a great job and contributing very professionally to this site. Keep up the good work pos

Digging: Impetuous Ritual - Unholy Congregation of Hypocritical Ambivalence

ZedO
May 7th 2012


1096 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

PaperbackWriter@ Thanks, Man! Yes, that's right English isn't my first language, I can read and understand English text well, even for a prose one like Of Mice and Man. But writing, oh God, it's so damn difficult, haha!! However I love sharing the opinion on music, therefore I'm always up...

CaptainDooRight@Thanks Bro, perhaps one day, I'm gotta do a review on Megadeth, haha....



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