With a dosage of Gothic Metal and ‘70s Art/Progressive Rock thrown into the inspiration, along with a keytar and a soprano female vocalist, you can quite see some very special is about to happen from a quintet that will give you a dosage of the sounds of the two genres getting to erupt like a volcano that is ready to come burst. And that is Moscow’s own Crimson Blue. The band launched back in 2008 with darker areas and performed in different clubs and having a demo released in 2010, a debut album in 2011 called Innocence, and their new album released this year called, The Angelic Performance.
Combining the sounds of Lacuna Coil, Pain of Salvation, and Opeth to name a few, Crimson Blue are just one of the most surprising bands I’ve ever listened to and they can really take it up a notch here. With some line-up changes, the band considers; Dani Hellstrom on Lead Vocals and Keyboards, Andrew Nova on Guitar, Lex Romano on Guitar, Alex Verge on Bass, and Billy Nekhaev on Drums. The band are now on a European tour with Nightwish’s Tarja Turunen which they started on Halloween and throughout November this year and supporting the new album and finally getting some recognition to breakout into high gear.
Songs like Locust starts the album off with radio tuning, thunderstorm, and alarms blaring before the up tempo bass rumbling, eruptive riffs, drums, and Dani’s vocals come kicking in with her vocals and then it becomes a middle-eastern touch that makes you feel that you are in a lost world without going home, but this track is an excellent and powerful introduction to get the engines rolling. They also bring in some of the atmosphere of the future and dealing with the struggling to survive is a risk for a choice to sacrificing themselves.
Take for example Dolores. It sounds like a revolutionary metallic touch, but they get into the alternative rock direction with the bass lines by Verge, haunting ominous guitar leads from both Nova and Romano, and Nekhaev’s drums getting into the mid-tempo beats as Dani’s voice just soars through to give the band an electrical juice to pump them up to see where they would go to next while Sacrifiction has a darker, melodic, and ominous approach that shows Dani’s voice resembling at times Sharon Den Adel of Within Temptation as she soars throughout his vocals to reach that high note.
Dani’s voice gives the band a chance to relax and calm down for a good while as she sings with a beautiful tone and the orchestral vibes sets an emotional tone with her and playing the piano and creating epic touches as if you can imagine trying to not being alone with the Road to Oblivion. And it gives Crimson Blue a chance to show their softer side along with flying to the heavens on Dark Heart of Mine. But they also have a side of doing two epics on here with the 9-minute piece, Lab ll Yggdrasil and the 11-minute closer, Black Wings.
Here, the band go into some textures of heavier and ascending melodies with extreme power thanks to Romano, Nova, Verge, and Nekhaev creating those structures to see where the time is right on the signature sounds for the powder keg to go off with a frightening beat. And go into the melodramatic sounds through the ominous piano as if you are walking into a dark and haunting forest looking and searching for help before the roaring instruments come in like a driven engine running and then the usage of the keyboard strings and Dani singing the melody and then back into the darker tunnel while go into the chance for light at the end of the tunnel as she is helping the person for comfort and let them know that everything is going to be okay with a climatic finale.
While this is my introduction to the band’s music, Crimson Blue’s The Angelic Performance is a touching and an evocative album this year. And they really have a lot of energy inside their hearts and minds of playing the sounds of the influences in their music. And it’s rolled into one. And yet, it is an album that a band have really shown a lot of vitality and details of what they have accomplished in them.