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No Terror in the Bang


Review by Gary Hill

I almost put this set under progressive rock. I'm not positive metal is the proper place for it, but the band is billed as a cinematic metal band. Since a good chunk of this fits under heavy metal to me, anyway, I opted to go with their description. This is a dark and moody set. They get really heavy at times, but also can turn jazzy and mellow at others. Musically, I'd say the closest comparison would probably be to Otep, but this has more mellow stuff than Otep does. The vocals on the disc most often remind me of Amy Winehouse. The band takes its name from an Alfred Hitchcock quote ("There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it."), and some of the music feels befitting his work. Whatever you call this, it's effective and interesting. It's also quite unique.

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Track by Track Review
Saule Pleureur
Keyboards bring this in with gentle tones and melodies. Vocals rise up amidst this musical concept. The cut rises up after a time, but only marginally. There is a cool dark, jazzy texture to the piece. As some symphonic aspects emerge in the arrangement, it really gets intense. This reminds me of something that might have been used in a Hitchcock music, which is appropriate given the origin of the band's name. There is a slight twisted aspect to this.
Another kind of violence
Coming in as a huge change, this a real powerhouse metal concept as it gets underway. Then it drops down to a mellower movement for the vocals. That part is in keeping with the opening song. This thing gets more of that metal aspect added to the mix as it continues. Yet there are some definite symphonic prog elements at play, too. This is a screamer that seems to run along the line between prog metal and metallic prog.
No more helpful peace I
Now, this is fierce and pretty much pure pounding metal. It's fairly extreme. There are some melodic parts of it, though.
No more helpful peace II
Piano brings this into being, and other symphonic elements come over the top to augment it. The piece is moody and mellow. It's also pretty. Eventually the vocals come in over the top of this balladic piece.
Another with a moody edge, this has a more rocking aspect at its heart. There are symphonic elements provided by keyboards over the top a lot of the time. As it approaches the halfway mark, it shifts toward seriously hard rocking zones in an arrangement that has a lot of epic metal built into it. It eventually works to more of a metallic, angry zone. This gets a parental advisory.
21 grams
Pretty and dramatic music of the mellow variety makes up this short (just over a minute) instrumental.
Piano brings this into being. The vocals come in over the top after a time. The cut becomes a dark piece of proggy understated rock. It gets more edgy stuff at times, but never rises to the point of metal. It's a powerful piece of music.
There are some intriguing concepts and sections here. At points the cut turns toward percussive sounds. There is also a full metal movement that bursts out. Yet the moody mellower textures present on so much of the album are also behind the early parts of the track and some later ones. It makes for a track that's particularly dynamic and full of contrasts.
This comes in with more of that Hitchcock sort of texture. The number eventually drives out to some of the most purely metallic sounds of the disc, though. Still, it drops back for that mellower, freaky texture at points along the road, too. This has some pretty crazed moments.
Preacher of steel

Another that's more on the pure metal end of the spectrum, this is fierce and powerful. Yet there are still more restrained moments along the road.

Memory of a waif part I
Moody techno type sounds drive this cut. It's does work well as an introduction, first part for the next song.
Memory of a waif part II
This screamer is decidedly metallic and screaming hot. This is one of he most purely metal songs here.
Broken mind
There is a sedate movement at the start of this piece. That bit of moody melodic texture eventually works out to an arrangement that serves as the backdrop for a largely spoken vocal performance. That eventually gives way to a freaky kind of dark arrangement for vocals that turn more toward those of the rest of the album. This is dramatic, cinematic and so cool.
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