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Arven - Black Is The Colour

Black Is The Colour
by Stephanie Hensley at 05 September 2013, 10:36 AM

After a two year hiatus, Symphonic Metal band ARVEN has returned with a new full length album. Being a fan of Symphonic Metal, I couldn’t wait to get my greedy hands on this one and give it a first listen. I certainly wasn’t disappointed. ARVEN fans are in for a bit of a surprise considering the gothic turn the band as taken with this release.

The good: As a collective, the band seems to work very well together. Till Felden’s drums are excellent. His timing is spot on; never over done or seemingly missing. Vocals by Carina Hanselmann are ethereal, floating above the music with a darkened gothic grace. Also very good, the piano is fantastic, as is the bass and guitars. I wouldn’t say the guitars are overly intricate, but still great in their simplicity.

The bad: Just being honest here, but I did hear some things I thought could have used some tweaking. Personally, I thought “Rainsong” would have sounded better with a more “clean” sounding piano. To me, the synthesized sound detracted from what I felt they were attempting to portray. Other than that, I thought perhaps that song as well as a few other tracks could have used a bit of compacting, some of the tracks could have been a little more tightly done. Maybe it would be best to describe what I heard as an unpolished gem. An unpolished gem is still a gem though.

The ugly: Ugly?! There is no ugly! One handsome guy at the drums and five lovely and ladies, all of them very talented at their respective crafts. No ugly there.

Personal favorites from “Black is the Colour” include “Believe,” an upbeat tempo tune that really highlights the talent of the band as a whole. “The One For Me” adds the additional vocals of Stefan Schmidt (VAN CANTO). What a treat this song is with such amazing vocals that not only contrast but complement each other as well.  Adding a bit of crunchiness to the guitars and a slight change in vocal presentation, “My Darkest Dream” really stood out. “Firesite Stories” carries a bit of pagan undertones, and made me think of BLACKMORE’S NIGHT, or more aptly what they would sound like if they took a Symphonic Metal turn. Title track “Black is the Colour” is so beautiful, it’s almost impossible to describe. The vocals here are so rich with emotion and music so great, a real treat that they covered this Irish folk song as well as “Ride On.”

Symphonic metal fans will be delighted with “Black is the Colour”. It is dark, at times heartbreaking, and filled with easily relatable lyric material. This new offering is definitely worth a listen and highly recommended. It should prove interesting what also comes in the (hopefully) near future for this band.

3 Star Rating

1. Believe
2. Don't Look Back
3. Rainsong
4. The One For Me
5. All I Got
6. My Darkest Dream
7. Cercle d'Emeraude
8. In Your Dreams
9. Firesite Stories
10. My Fall
11. Ride On
12. Black is the Colour
Carina Hanselmann - Vocals
Anastasia Schmidt  - Guitar
Ines Thomé – Guitar
Lisa Marie Geiß  – Bass
Lena Yatsula  – Piano
Till Felden – Drums
Record Label: Massacre Records


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