Archive for April Rain

Interview with Martijn Westerholt [Delain]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , , , , , on 25th April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Valkyrian Music editor Nico Davidson catches up with Delain’s founding member and main man Martijn Westerholt in Manchester before the band’s first UK show of 2014 with Within Temptation.

Special thanks to April Mccaffrey for filming the interview.

Delain online:

http://delain.nl
http://facebook.com/delainmusic

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Delain – The Human Contridiction

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , , on 3rd April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Delain
The Human Contradiction
Released 7th April 2014
Symphonic Metal
Released via Napalm Records

Delain have become one of the most recognised names in symphonic metal following the release of We Are The Others back in 2012, which was also the last album the band released through Roadrunner Records before jumping ship to Napalm. With their UK tour supporting Within Temptation just around the corner, it makes sense to release the album in the run up to the tour.

Here Come the Vultures creeps in at the beginning of the album with Charlotte’s strong and emotive voice accompanied by Martijn’s eerie style of keyboard playing. The heavier sections of the song blast in unexpectedly, taking Delain down the dark and cumbersome sound of their pre-We Are The Others repertoire. Your Body Is A Battleground rings out with its catchy vocal melodies and memorable lyrics, underlined by a fistful of unrelenting riffs and keyboard strikes. The vocal duet between Charlotte and Marco (Nightwish/Tarot) add a very empathic characteristic to the track, bringing life to the dramatic lyrics.

Stardust follows up with a calmer combination of keyboard ballets and soaring vocals, that dance perfectly together in the sea of sharp, driving metal elements from the guitars and rhythm sections which makes it a prominent track on the album. My Masquerade soars like a raven in the night sky, bringing about a sound reminiscent of Theatres Des Vampires due to the way the song is portrayed throughout the instrumentation. The halfway point of the album, Tell Me, Mechanist, fuses the modern Gothic elements and fierce pounding stylistic characters of Delain’s music into poignant track full of plenty of clean vocals and bestial growls. The gentle swaying keyboards really stand out on this track, adding a truly unique flavour to the song.

Sing To Me really displays the emotional depth of Charlotte’s voice as well as the vigorous sound of the band’s music, keeping the harrowing sound blazing like a bonfire during a cold November dusk. Marco makes an appearance on this track as well, adding to the depth of Charlotte’s enchanting vocals. Army Of Dolls echoes with the sounds of the Lucidity and April Rain albums while bringing Delain’s newer sound into the fray as well, demonstrating how much the band’s sound has evolved since its formation. There are new aspects thrown into this song as well that will drag the listener out of their comfort zone and into a strange new land of ethereal keys and soulful guitar passages.

Lullaby is another song that will drag the listener from their comfort zone but rather than leaving them in a new land, it will take them by the hand for a stroll down through a haunting forest of tainted riffs and shaded lyrics as well Plutonian symphonies. The atmosphere created by this track is like that found within Edgar Allen Poe’s The Raven. The Human Contradiction comes to a passionate and unrestrained close with The Tragedy Of The Commons which flows smoothly like a river, allowing tides of symphonic passages and riffs wash over the listener. Alissa White-Gluz’s hungry, demonic growls are a suprise on during the song, blending well with the atmospheric choir vocals and the twilit sound of the track.

Delain have become such a recognised name in symphonic metal for a long list of reasons and The Human Contradiction can be added to the list of reasons as it could easily rival the likes of Leaves’ Eyes recent album as well as Within Temptation’s discography. If anything, The Human Contradiction could be the best symphonic metal release of the decade as well as one of the greatest albums to be released through Napalm Records.

4.5/5

Nico Davidson

Delain online:

http://delain.nl
http://facebook.com/delainmusic

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Delain – Interlude

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , on 3rd May 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Delain
Interlude
Released 6th May 2013
Symphonic Metal
Released via Napalm Records

Delain have fast become one of the most talked about bands on the global symphonic metal scene, with an appearance coming up at Metal Female Voices Festival later this year, and a headline slot at The Dames of Darkness Festival in the UK, as well as the recent signing to Napalm Records and being announced as support on the first leg of Within Temptation’s 2014 world tour. Interlude is the band’s fourth official release, featuring a mixture of new and live material.

The new material on the album shows another change in the band’s sound, whilst still retaining some of the accessible sound that was heard on We Are The Others. Charlotte’s vocals prove to be heavenly yet powerful, piercing through the music like an arrow breaking through flesh. The symphonic passages, conjured by Martjin, are heavier than expected with subtle dashes of tragedy and sorrow here and there. Martjin’s use of the keyboard really shines out on the track Collars And Suits, providing emphasis on the song’s sound and weaving between the guitars and bass, provided by Timo and Otto respectively. The new single mix version of Are You Done With Me blasts out a new level of emotive sounds.

Such A Shame is the track that lacks in strength for the most part, being unsuccessful in being an exciting or memorable track, which is a shame as Sander’s drum workings have quite the flare to them through the song. The acoustic medleys of Cordell make for gentle listening, displaying a new dynamic with Charlotte’s voice. The title track from Delain’s 2012 release, We Are The Others, makes an appearance as a refreshingly entrancing ballad version where the chilling piano work and soulful vocals make quite the team, making for a touching sound.

The live tracks on the album are made up mostly from the band’s 2012 release, with only Invidia take from the April Rain album. The live atmosphere of the songs give them more oomph, for lack of a better word and they really demonstrate the strength of Charlotte’s vocals, as well as the precision that the band execute in their songs.

On the first listen of Interlude, it’s easy to see why Delain have become one of the biggest bands on the symphonic metal scene. With an accessible sound and solid song writing, the band clearly have a bright future ahead of them and if they keep belting out tracks like Collars And Suits and Breathe On Me, Delain will soon be reaching the same heights as Within Temptation and Nightwish.

4/5

Nico Davidson

Delain will be headlining the Dames of Darkness Festival in Bilston, near Wolverhampton, on Saturday 11th May. Delain have also been confirmed to support Within Temptation on the first leg of their world tour. Tour dates can be found here.

Delain online:

http://site.delain.nl
http://www.facebook.com/delainmusic
http://www.myspace.com/delainmusic

 

We Are The Others [Delain Tour Review]

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , on 17th May 2012 by vmteam

This year I was able to follow Delain around the country on their We Are The Other Tour (I swear, I’m not a stalker!), celebrating the individuality of people known as the ‘others’. The album concept was inspired by the tragic case of Sophie Lancaster, where she was brutally murder because of stereotyping. This tour saw Delain’s fourth tour around the United Kingdom, joining Delain on the road were American metallers Halcyon Way, a band that seemed almost wasted on this tour and would probably of benefitted more from touring with the likes of Dragonforce or Arch Enemy. Also, on the tour were Amada Somerville’s own solo band Trillium. The UK tour in the started at the HMV Institute in Birmingham, situated just 5 minutes from the Bull Ring Shopping Centre. The city saw Delain’s first ever UK show at the Femme Metal Festival in 2009 and like Charlotte said ,and I agree, it was like coming home.

Starting up the shows were Halcyon Way, their name being said differently to how it’s spelt, a band like I said before I felt were a bit wasted on the tour and should of really toured with the likes of Dragonforce and would appeal to fans perhaps more to fans of Bullet For My Valentine or Malefice or other acts along those lines. Their music saw a heavier and more violent approach to music, hinting towards the metalcore and post-hardcore styles. Their performances were heavier than that of Trillium and Delain. With their performance totalled in a full six songs on their set list, although I could not seem to find where the songs ended and started during the first two shows and they seemed to be doing a never ending amount of songs. The Birmingham show saw that the band came straight from Paris to Birmingham to perform. Halcyon did have a strong reaction from the crowd but the performance felt to be lacking something. The last song, On Black Wings (taken from their album Inctrination), which for me, was the best. This was the same for the Sheffield show as well. The third night I saw them, in Manchester, was in a small and more intimate venue which saw them bloom and do a far more powerful performance than the previous nights with more input from the crowd. I think they are a band to watch for future reference but I feel that they weren’t anything too special, but as I said they’re a band to look out for. I would be surprised if we see these in the UK anytime soon. However, it is safe to say that the Delain Nation (a name for Delain fans), got a massive shock when it came down to it.

Like most people in the Delain crowd they had probably heard the most notable song for Trillium which is their promotional single Coward. The first time hearing this, it felt as if it was something that just didn’t click with me but it had grown on me over time. This tour saw lead singer Amanda quite sick with a doctor having to come and see Amanda just before the Sheffield show, which did mean a slight decrease from her performance over the next two shows: Sheffield and Manchester but at least she was able to carry on. Like Halcyon Way, it saw the same set list through out the tour, however with just one album to play tracks from, and the unlikely hood of hearing an Epica song, there wasn’t a vast selection of songs for them to perform. The HMV Institute was Amanda’s first show in the UK, even after touring all over the world with other acts like with Epica and Kamelot. I was surprised by how much I actually liked Trillium live during the first night we were able to see the curvy Amanda jump up and down on the stage and become in her element with the music, something that unfortunately was not seen at the Manchester show. I, however, would recommended checking out Trillium.

During this tour I have been able to encounter Delain’s performance at all different angles from being right at the front to far at the back and of course, slap bang in the middle. Delain have been one of my favourite bands to go and see live since I experienced of their live shows at Rio’s in Leeds back in 2010. Unlike other bands, after seeing them, they start to lose their touch, such as when I saw Lacuna Coil in Stoke-on-Trent and Manchester after seeing them in Liverpool, however this certainly was not the case with Delain. I was surprised as to how much I actually enjoyed all of the concerts on this tour, despite having the same set list throughout the tour. Being at the back for the first show I was able to see everything that they show had to offer as well as the very vibrant audience. The show saw new songs from Delain’s third album We Are The Others, scheduled for release June 4th here in the UK. Delain kicked off the set with a song from the new album, which I failed to remember the name of.

From here the band performed a mixture of songs which surprised me when I heard a lot of tracks from their first album Lucidity and as many new songs from We Are the Others. One of the first songs that were played during any of the shows was the title of the new album and the tour, We Are the Others, a song that celebrates indifference and uniqueness. A lot of songs made it is obvious that Delain have taken a sort of turn from what would be considered their typical sound, as the new songs tended to have more meaning surrounding life.

The Sheffield show celebrated Charlotte’s 25th Birthday. Unlike I had originally expected no one came out with a lit up cake on the stage for the audience to sing like with other bands, but I suppose they have their traditions and other bands have theirs. The same structure was given to the show and had the same songs involved as the first night with the same jokes but good.

As a rule, I don’t usually like shows in Manchester but unlike the others, the Manchester show seemed to have shined through with the crowd. Unlike previous nights, it seemed that See Me in Shadows was performed better, as in Birmingham is seemed that given the emotion of the song it was not that well delivered. The Manchester show also saw better lighting than the previous nights and had more energy throughout this show.

The Gathering was the best song of the night and the last, it saw the audience jumping up and down, more so than at the Sheffield show, although the best song of the Sheffield show was The Gathering, along with April Rain. The Manchester show, also saw people involved with the Sophie Lancaster charity premier the new songs from the album that were inspired by the tragedy of her death.

In total the best show out of the three was the Manchester show, despite the band slightly putting their foot in it with the remarks about Manchester City winning the title and losing to Manchester United, with the Birmingham show not even close, it really was the best show that I have seen in a while. Anyone who missed out, should definitely keep an eye out for the next time Delain tour in the UK.

Danielle Eley