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Bleeding Zero - Pain And Fiction

Bleeding Zero
Pain And Fiction
by Andrew Harvey at 12 April 2022, 11:20 AM

BLEEDING ZERO are a trio of musicians all the way from Italy and they are led by vocalist/composer, RACHELE MANFREDI whereas on bass duties is CLAUDIO SOTTILI and drummer is DANIELE NERI. They are described ‘as a foundational gothic/symphonic metal component, merging with elements from various metal subgenres, with strong classical influences and a special attention to lyrics as poetry, as well to the theatrical dimension’. There have been changes in the band's lineup but they released an EP titled SCENOPHILIAC in 2015.

The EP was well received and it certainly gave a teaser of what the band are like as their songs portray characters in a story or emotions that the band can relate to. The gothic sound really does come through and even the arrangement takes a sort of operatic approach. In 2020 their debut album PAIN AND FICTION was finished as it was mastered by TAPANI RAUHA in POPROCKJAZZ TURKU SCHOOL STUDIO based in Finland. The band’s influences include the likes of NIGHTWISH, EPICA, WITHIN TEMPTATION and SIRENIA.

Their debut album opens with “Terra Nova” as the classical elements fly in gradually then what sounds like guitar maybe and drums as well as bass guitar blossoms. RACHELE’S vocals do come in with softly spoken words but they do vary as they dip into falsetto range where RACHELE reaches high in her register as to her vocal range. There is great ornamentation and contrast as to instrumentation with vocals, bass and drums etc. The next track “Life And Death Of Sybil Vane” has a more mellow sound but vocals are very much the centre of attention as drums take a light percussive approach in this track.

Guitar plus vocals take that darker side as the track does become a bit devilish, as vocals transcend again into subtle choked vocals, subtle indeed by nature to take its place in the mix. Drums set the transition into the next track in “Parnassus” as drums stamp their mark here with a symphonic touch of destiny. Vocals double up at one point as guitar if its programmed gets a bit eccentric before we go into the next track. “Sappho’s Leap” has a more classic rock rhythm more upbeat and drums lead this side as vocals are soothing, angelic and thrive as much.

The sound of a woodwind instrument also adds a nice, bright addition to the instrumentation as vocals guide the track on into the next track. “Romanticynicism” have that low end boomy sound of drums but has a more gothic rock feel as the vocals take that operatic approach. I could even hear the background maybe a harpsichord sound effect as keys play a sort of melody as vocals mimic the high notes. “In Somnium Ars Clamavit” as piano counts in vocals as RACHELE’S voice echoes and creates a beautiful choral sound that is angelic.

This is short enough as we flow into track seven which is “Ecce Ancilla Musae” with piano intro, harp and drums take a slow crescendo to come in full force. Vocal layers are also heard with harmony lines and drums with bass guitar set the tone supporting vocals. There is a creative section to end going into track eight which is “Bliss Of The Sea”. A full symphonic unison is in full swing here as dynamics come in here and are noticeable as well. More vocals feature like a small choir but perhaps different vocal lines by RACHELE as guitar also plays  a part in this chapter of the story which the album depicts with emotions.

“Scenophiliac” consists of a woodwind instrument again, maybe flute as bass and eclectic guitar switch the narrative. Drums are very much present and well placed in the mix. “The Seal And The Siren” with mellow guitar picking as rhythmic movement is vague but joins in as drums creates a nice feel for the track bouncing in with kick patterns as vocals follow along with all the symphonic elements. Even cymbal hits also make a contribution. Guitar and synth follow each other as the track finishes.

“Saturnine” has a pounding double kick pattern that stands out more than the full kit does, we can hear bells tolling away as vocals take the operatic approach, as vocal harmonies are also heard. Choral harmonies come in again later on in the track as the track is full of classical or symphonic influences, as drums also improvise before we go into the final track. “Quest For Myself” is quiet at first with what sounds like acoustic guitar, classical piano and vocals execute this track very well as it echoes in the mix. Drums become creative and original as they have done, while guitar plays when it has to and has some solo sections but not too long.

The tempo that is set is most likely to be in that sway movement as the track moves along in 6/8 or 12/8 as a time signature perhaps a bit of both. And that is basically the album done with a final sound of wind blowing, as it slowly diminishes into the far depths of the sound field. Overall I have to say it is a very good album with lots to like about, the combination of classical or symphonic elements in the music is somewhat warm, soothing and creates a very well arranged sound palette of bright sounds, variation in instrumentation and nice balance between each instrument as well.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Terra Nova
2. Life And Death Of Sybil Vane
3. Parnassus
4. Sappho’s Leap
5. Romanticynicism
6. In Somnium Ars Clamavit
7. Ecce Ancilla Musae
8. Bliss Of The Sea
9. Scenophiliac
10. The Seal And The Siren
11. Saturnine
12. Quest For Myself
Lineup:
Rachele Manfredi - Vocals & Composing
Claudio Sottili - Bass Guitar
Daniele Neri - Drums and Programming
Record Label: Revalve Records
     


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