Theatres des Vampires – Candyland

Rating: 4/5
Distributor/label: Scarlet Records
Released: 2016
Buy Album [URL]: HMV
Band Website: http://www.theatres-des-vampires.net/

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Tracklisting:

1. Morgana Effect
2. Resurrection Mary
3. Delusional Denial
4. Parasomnia
5. Candyland
6. Your Ragdoll
7. Pierrot Lunaire
8. Photographic
9. Opium Shades
10. Seventh Room
11. Autumn Leaves

Band Line-up:

Gabriel Valerio -Drums
Zimon Lijoi – Bass
Sonya Scarlet – Vocals
Giorgio Ferrante – Guitar

Review:

Formed in 1994, Theatres des Vampires named themselves after the legendary theatre in Anne Rice’s vampires chronicles. Back then they became well known for their dramatic, gothic take on symphonic black metal and their obsession with all things related to the undead. Over the years their line-up has changed a lot, and since Sonya Scarlet took over from Lord Vampyr at the helm of the band they dropped their black metal influences and had success with their electronic gothic metal sound. Their latest album Candyland was released in October and revolves around the concept of the eponymous children’s ward at the infamous Pennhurst Asylum.

From the beginning, it’s clear that they have pushed their electro-goth metal style even further to the forefront, with the intro track ‘Morgana Effect’ sounding more industrial than anything they’ve ever done. Not only have they upped the synths, but the guitars are heavier than anything on their last few albums which are pretty toned down in comparison.

The album continues on this path, but the songs are hit and miss. They either sound fresh and inspired or rather lacklustre, as though the vampire theatre was lacking ideas. ‘Your Ragdoll’ is rather poppy, but it’s written well and its infectiousness makes it one of the highlights of the record.

If you liked the band’s last album, then you’ll be pleased to hear ‘Pierrot Lunaire’ which leans towards the more rich and sensuous style heard on ‘Moonlight Waltz’. Again, if you like their goth metal sound then ‘Autumn Leaves’ is another track that won’t leave you disappointed.

Overall, it seems a bit disjointed but there are some great pieces of music within. Over the years the band has experimented with many styles, and on this release it seems as though they’re trying to please everyone by doing a bit of all of it, as well as breaking new ground. As someone with varied listening habits who likes all the styles they’ve done, it satisfies my taste.

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