Album Review By Adam McCann
M-Theory Audio/Melodic Death Metal/Progressive Metal
Formed from the ashes of Asterion, Vintersea stormed onto the scene in 2017 with their fantastic debut album ‘The Gravity of Fall’, their perfect blend of melodic death and progressive metal was difficult to not instantly fall in love with. This year has the Oregon band returning with their sophomore album ‘Illuminated’.
‘Illuminated’ takes the foundations lain down on their debut album and shows the band growing as songwriters and musicians. This does not necessarily mean that ‘Illuminated’ is better than ‘The Gravity…’, but rather just different. The musicianship within Vintersea is second to none and cannot be faulted, but it is the vocals of Avienne Low which really impress on this album; Low prowls with a death metal growl that can easily give other contemporary female growling vocalists such as Alissa White-Gluz and Angela Gossow more than a run for their money. However, when Low drops the growl and puts her vocals to soar, this is where ‘Illuminated’ really becomes enjoyable with tracks like ‘Old Ones’ the title track being powerful examples of this. However, where this album becomes tantalisingly good is during the track ‘Crack of Light’, a song so smooth it has a beard on its hands coupled with a saxophone solo that really takes this track to the next level.
At just under 40 minutes, ‘Illuminated’ is some top-drawer metal, it has just enough melodic death and progressive metal to make this album really work. For anyone looking for some female fronted metal with some real integrity, then look no further than ‘Illuminated’.
Rating : 81/100
MHF Magazine/Adam McCann