Country of origin: Norway
Formed in: 1999
Genre: Gothic Metal
Lyrical themes: Fantasy, Feelings
Label: Season of Mist
Years active: 1996-1999 (as The Covent), 1999-2010
Gothic Metal that borderlines with pop rock, often called Gothic rock. Letters from Fire is the debut album of Norwegian Gothic metal band The Crest. It mainly features re-worked songs from the band’s previous demos.
Genre Gothic rock
Label Season of Mist
Producer Terje Refsnes
01.Fire Walk With Me
02.Butterflies And Dragons
04.Never Sleep Again
06.Pills For Broken Dreams
07.In This Cage
Nell Sigland – Vocals, keyboards
Kristian Sigland – Guitars, vocals, keyboards, programming
Magnus Westgaard – Bass, vocals
Sebastian Aarebrot – Guitars
Xander Sevon – Drums
The first thing that came into my mind when the first spin ended was Lacuna Coil, the songs here are catchy and melodious, almost poppy In certain way, the real highlight here is the enchanting voice of Nell Sigland, her voice is the main attraction of the band since the sound is nothing groundbreaking.
The opener “Fire Walk With Me” is without argument the hit song in the album, and my favorite one too, other songs that might drawn attention from the listener are “Thorns” and “Childhoods End”, I’m sure that some of your non-metal friends will like the whole album.
The question is, Is this Metal? Well, yes, it falls into some of the mellow, softer genres of Metal, but in my books classifies as Metal, a little weird though, that this Norwegian band is signed to an extreme Metal label such as Season Of Mist.
Fans of Lacuna Coil, The Gathering and newer Theatre Of Tragedy might wanna check this one out.
Wow, simply wooow – 95%
This album had been on my waiting list for almost two years (I always bought some other albums that seemed better), and finally I got it, mainly thanks to the previous review of it.
No, it is not an ear-shattering grindcore or even a Lacrimas Profundere-like “gloomy” gothic album, but neither is it a “Moonspell wannabe”, first, because this is way better than Moonspell. This band has passion. Moonspell may be good, technically speaking, but they have no passion. The Crest has. Nell’s voice is quite sweet, yes, it may not have the power that Angela Gossow’s (Arch Enemy) has, but she delivers, and does so in a very pleasing way.
The album is very good, with some (well… yes, a lot of) synthesizers.
One thing is true: if you’re a diehard fan of “pure fucking metal” you more than probably won’t like this one, but that doesn’t make it any less good.
The only downside I find in this release (aside from the art, which is frankly mediocre) is that it IS a little too sweet, even corny (“Where are my pills for broken dreams?”) but hey, last album by Sentenced is very corny, and it is still great, so why this one should be any less good?
Now, I just HAVE to say it. I had been putting off this one for a long time, as I said, but I ran to the store when I found out this Nell was the same Nell who replaced Liv Kristine in Theatre of Tragedy. Yes, my purchase was heavily influenced by the fact that I wanted to know the new “tragedienne”, and I was pleasantly surprised. This woman has talent.
A Great Escape Into The Ethereal – 93%
The Crest is exactly the form of sound I generally not listen to. While I certainly love listening to non-metal, and in fact I do a lot, The Crest are using the exact formula the more mainstream rock bands do. Think of Evanescence and you pretty much know how The Crest sounds.
But there are sometimes that even though a band has the same sound than an other, one that you might not even like, the end result is still far superior than what you would expect.
The Crest shines from the moment it starts, and lasts amazing until the very last second. The melodies crafted are original, though they feel like you have known this song since you were a child. Which is quite amazing, because whenever a band can make something that sounds both fresh and at the same time gets you the feeling of “this should have been a classic ages ago”, it means the material itself is a league above anything you have heard before from the genre.
And it is. The Crest are fusing elements from bands like Dreadful Shadows, Tiamat, Type O Negative, but those are only references with Katatonia, recent Theatre Of Tragedy and recent Anathema being the most obvious similarities. Off course, like I said in the beggining, all those influences are fused in a sound that can generally be described as a better version of Evanescence.
The melodies range from being soothing, ambient, keyboard only parts, to intense fast parts reminding Green Carnation at their prime. While the album is not guitar driven like the album I will now compare it to with, it gave the same kind of feeling: Skeleton Skeletron by Tiamat. If you got that feeling of isolation and sadness while listening to the last track in that particular album, then expect more and more of it here; which is brilliant.
With lyrics that are thoughtful and flow in the mind, an amazing artwork done by Dark Tranquillity’s front-man, excellent musicianship from all members, ethereal vocals from the talent that now is in Theatre Of Tragedy,arrangements thought to the last note and pause, and off course songs full of meaning and emotion, The Crest really have weaved an album that should, and will, become a part of history and a benchmark for all other bands after this particular sound.
If you want to listen to something relaxing, yet amazingly deep, oozing quality, Letters From Fire will become your friend for a while. A great album, that will serve your need for an escape into the ethereal.