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Angel Heart - Angel Heart

Angel Heart
Angel Heart
by Jason "Monotonija" McCraw at 04 April 2018, 12:04 PM

From the land of icy waters and snowy woods, beautiful Norway, a new band emerges from the dust and ashes of projects past. This band is called ANGEL HEART, and they are poised to Rock their way into your hearts come mid-May this year. With a full-length debut consisting of nine songs which aim to revive the melancholy Metal of old, this Norwegian troupe encapsulate the coldness and hopefulness that make their country so magical and mysterious. The powerful vocals of Trine Elise Johansen seem to fall from the white sky, hitting hard like hail as they surround the Metal music which drives them, and that music is true Heavy Metal; nothing more, nothing less.

The record opens with the short but sweet "Burning Desire", a piece of music inspired by the likes of DIO and WARLOCK, and it proves to be the ultimate stage-setter for what's to come. "Run Away With Me", the album's second offering, charges ahead full steam with raw '80s Metal goodness. The vocals are decidedly strong, and the music has that perfect edge of wizardry and mysticism that was so prevalent with acts such as RAINBOW, OZZY OSBOURNE, and JUDAS PRIEST.

It is track three, "I Don't Need Love", where ANGEL HEART truly defines to the listener who they are and manage to plaster themselves on that illustrious wall which contains the long and varied history of Heavy Metal in its entirety. This song boasts that true Norwegian feeling, its ballad-like tempo painted in folky strings and elongated power chords that envelop you like a freezing wind upon the barren, white landscape. The vocals embody the power derived from strength and longing in a world that can seem so lonely at times, perfectly characterizing the exaltation of self over the expectations of outside entities. In fact, the entire album continues in this fashion, every track gaining in intensity and scope where the last one left off.

ANGEL HEART keeps bringing it throughout, with songs like "Forever Free", "She Is Strong", and "My Spirit Will Live On" hitting hard with their emotional angst and unwavering strength. Not since SYLVAINE released "Wistful" have I enjoyed a Scandinavian Metal release this much, setting aside all of the obviously majestic Black Metal to arise from the region almost every five minutes nowadays. The track "Rock Friends" is a fun little break from the seriousness that encompasses the rest of the album. Its melody is almost reminiscent of the theme song from the ‘Neverending Story’ movie, although one could also draw comparisons to the more upbeat moments on JUDAS PRIEST's "Turbo" record. In any case, it still has the vibe that the rest of the album portrays yet has the potential to allow one to return to those blissful, carefree days of childhood that seem to leave us all too soon, lest we let this art reach in and grab us the way that it can.

ANGEL HEART's self-titled debut closes with the epic "Sailing Against The Wind". This track must have been specifically chosen as the album's finale, as it almost gives the feeling of a film's ending credits rolling. In short, it brings closure to what has proven itself to be a fantastic and unimaginable journey underneath the prismatic eye of the ever-watching Northern Lights; a journey full of stories about love and loss, friends and enemies, temptations and rejections, and the brilliantly lit night sky, whose countless stars shine upon every little moment, turning experience into song. Another great album from another promising new band!

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Burning Desire
2. Run Away With Me
3. I Don't Need Love
4. Forever Free
5. She Is Strong
6. My Spirit Will Live On
7. Rock Friends
8. Worth The Wait
9. Sailing Against The Wind
Trine Elise Johansen - Vocals
Oystein Aaseby Pedersen – Bass
Lars Andre Larsen – Keyboards and Guitars
Morten Faerovig – Drums
Record Label: Mighty Music


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