Tuesday, 2 September 2014

'Ashes of Luna' Album Review 'SI-963Hz'

Away in the incredible city of Los Angeles and theres only one place I wanted to be.. The Viper Room, a famous venue formerly owned by the one and only Johnny Depp. This place has housed musicians far and wide and resembles any typical dingy rock bar and I loved it! It was at that very bar that I discovered 'Ashes of Luna'. With their inclusion of keys and synths their atmospheric performance provided a set full of motivational songs. Here is a review of the bands latest album 'SI-963Hz'. The album is split into three chapters that take you through a lyrical story.

The opening track provides an instrumental piece with a womans voice softly speaking. As stated many times I love an album that builds you up to what you will eventually hear and this does no different, it drops you straight into the futuristic storyland that the band wanted to create.

Track two 'Labyrinth' has a very futuristic feel to it with atmospheric synths and phased vocals. There is an instant comparison to the type of music that '30 Seconds To Mars' produce with their inclusion of wordly instruments and creative space-like samples that lie in the forefront of the song. Track three 'Stay A Memory' is similar in the way it uses prominent keys and gtadually building guitars to take you to the chorus that has you singing along every time. Inclusion of strings on this song also show a fantastic break section to the song that mounts up the tension before re-releasing the passion of the chorus one last time.

Track four begins Chapter II with the song being titled 'Celestial Convoy'. The production of this album shows especially clearly on this track with all the sounds hitting your ears. The song again takes you through a story in your own mind. The production and sound are something reminiscent of 'Two Steps From Hell' with their heavy use of orchestral instruments. This then leads into 'Singer of Songs' which makes you feel as if your in a space void filled with sound. The electronic elements in this song are even more significant. The underlying chant on the chorus that sounds as if it is massing an army works well to create a united, motivational feel. The song also has an urban dance feel to it!

'Sea of Diamonds' rounds off the second chapter with the inclusion of heavy synths and lead guitar aspects that appear throughout the song.Vocals are especially sound on this track sounding like bands such as 'Secondhand Serenade' and 'Crown The Empire'. The end of the track is instrumental and leads into the next chapter.

'Red Garden' is the instrumental track that begins the final chapter and it sounds worthy of inclusion within any Hollywood film score. The group vocals chants underlying the beating african drums fast-paced violins create a feeling of adventure and space. Track eight 'New Beginning' creates a feeling that is the same as the title of the song. The light upbeat ambience is uplifting and atmospheric. The band demonstrate here their ability to create a single track with a similar sound to 'Metro Station'.

Track nine 'Rainy Day Woman' shows more of a raw element to the band. It strips back the majority of synths and keys and has more of a pop aura surrounding it. Whether this song fits on the album, I am unsure though as a stand alone track it is promising in showing the diversity of the band and demonstrates that they do not solely rely on their heavy use of electronic elements in their music.

The final track 'Pixy Overdose' takes you right back into the mood of the album with the atmospheric synth elements rejoining the song. The track is slower though still maintains the listeners attention even at the end of the album. Despite the lack of drums and guitars it still manages to maintain ambient mood and strong songwriting.

Overall I am very impressed, it is not often you hear a concept album and there are not many bands breaking out in the rock-electronic genre of music at the moment. In further albums my suggestion would be for the band to hone in on their strengths by creating an album that, as a whole, provides an atmospheric record that contains a general theme. In combination 'Ashes of Luna' have the potential to create very catchy songs with either dance or electronic elements.

Fuel Rock Club

Fuel Rock Club
Cardiff's Only Dedicated Rock & Metal Bar and Club