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The Dark Element - The Dark Element

The Dark Element
The Dark Element
by Sebastien "Bass" Parent at 01 December 2017, 8:07 PM

Good day Metal-Temple. THE DARK ELEMENT is a brand new musical project who released last week their debut album, self titled “The Dark Element”. The band includes former NIGHTWISH signer Anette Ozlen and former SONATA ARCTICA guitarist Jani Liimatainen. The quartet is closed by Jonas Kuhlberg and Jani Hurula both of whom plays alongside Liimatainen in CAIN’S OFFERING. I’d go as far as saying it is a sister band to the former with only 2 missing members.

The Dark Element” is a strong opening to the album of the same name. The energy is felt right away, musically strong with a great performance from Anette. This is pretty much the theme of the whole album with a few exceptions.

It’s hard to see if they were influenced by their former bands or it is simply the style they themselves brought to these respective bands back in the days, but “My Sweet Mystery” does sound like a mix of NIGHTWISH and old SONATA ARCTICA. With a strong guitar track and a powerful vocal symphony, they deliver probably the best of the album in this track.

The similarities between the bands is a little disconcerting to me though. I would have expected more of a disconnection, a change of direction to dissociate yourself right away from the former bands. But instead they seem to send a message with “Dead to Me”, I’ll let you form your own opinion on the matter, but this is one song I wouldn’t have included. It feels like a new version of “Bye Bye Beautiful” that Anette sang a few years ago.

The album close with 3 of the last 5 songs being ballads. “I Cannot Raise the Dead”, “Heaven of Your Heart” and “Only One Who Knows Me” are all beautifully written and performed. The emotion is felt through the music and Anette’s performance. In an interview with Metal-Temple earlier this month, Anette told our writer Jean-François that she hopes to do more album with Jani since he’s an amazing songwriter and can really capture her vocal capabilities. I have to agree with the statement, this is probably the best she has offered us to date.

While I don’t see this has an absolute must, it has a lot of potential and I will definitely follow the band from now on. This is only the start and there will be more to follow as the fans are demanding more, I don’t see why they would stop here. The production of the album was exceptional, the originality was a bit lackluster, though, but I can see a synergy building between Jani and Anette. I can’t wait to hear more from them.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 9

3 Star Rating

1. The Dark Element
2. My Sweet Mystery
3. Last Good Day
4. Here's To You
5. Someone You Used To Know
6. Dead To Me
7. Halo
8. I Cannot Raise The Dead
9. The Ghost And The Reaper
10. Heaven Of Your Heart
11. Only One Who Knows Me
Anette Olzon - Lead Vocals
Jani Liimatainen - Guitars, Keyboards, Programming
Jonas Kuhlberg - Bass
Jani "Hurtsi" Hurula - Drums
Record Label: Frontiers Music


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