CANDLE - The Keeper's Curse
March 5, 2018, a year ago
Traditional minded Swedes who have played live just once, in more than two years of existence. Musically, there's a look back, to the best European metal of the past, specifically a tolling bell augmented, Mercyful Fate inspired opener, “The Secret” and the atmospheric doom of “Light At The End”, akin to upbeat Candlemass or Paradise Lost at their old school, headbanging best. Locking into a similarly rollicking bass heavy/drum driven rhythm, countrymen C-mass are the most consistent calling card throughout the eight proper tracks (an untitled, 85 seconds intro kicks things off).
However, the normal to high pitched vocals, albeit off kilter, will never be mistaken for the booming, operatic voice of Messiah Marcolin. “Frozen With Fear” pummels from the start, then the dual leads suddenly break from the gate, like dueling thoroughbreds racing to see the loser relegated to the glue factory. A mid-tempo “Betrayal” keeps things pretty close to the vest, Erik Nordkvist keeping his upper register in check. In fact, the vocals on their “Dancing Lights” follow-up (in contrast to strained stratosphere of “Embrace By Darkness) finally hit a melodious key, with the addition of a temporary backing singer. Apart from straining for a couple of unattainable high notes, Start-to-finish “No Peace For My Soul” is probably the best cut. The latter half of “vengeance” unleashes another rolling C-mass guitar section. Killer! Really enjoy what Candle are attempting, just have to rein in the dog whistle warbling (even just a little bit) to climb further up the ladder. Moving forward, one to watch.