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Secret Rule - The Key to the World

Secret Rule
The Key to the World
by Justin "Witty City' Wittenmeier at 10 December 2017, 3:11 PM

SECRET RULE is a symphonic metal band from Italy.  The symphony/keyboard parts are the best part of the band but compared to some of the other bands in this genre, they come off as both cheap and cheesy at times.  The best way to pull this sound off is to, first, be a competent metal band and then go from there as layers are added to the sound.  As the guitarist, Andy Menario would be on the frontlines to play the metal role.  However, there are very few interesting guitar riffs or passages on the album.  I do find his solos to be pretty good; they aren’t too flashy or complicated but they have a great sense of melody and fit into the songs well enough.

I’m You,” is the perfect example of what I’m talking about.  The guitar is boring, simple chug riffs that I’ve heard 10,000 times in the late 90’s when NU-METAL came along and did it first.  It didn’t work for those bands and it doesn’t work now. After a boring intro, the first real track, “The Song of the Universe,” begins.  It tries for an epic sound but for a song that is over five minutes long, I can’t say any part of it stands out to me. Vocalist Angela is, of course, the centerpiece of the band but I find her vocals to be very uneven; sometimes she sounds okay other times the voice is just annoying and doesn’t do anything to move the songs forward to create an epic atmosphere.  Speaking of atmosphere, it is destroyed by the odd production.  The bass is either too loud or non-existent and the rhythm guitar is buried in the mix.

I’m a sucker for metal bands with female vocals but the symphonic metal genre is probably the most bloated one right now.  Considering EPICA and NIGHTWISH are too part of the genre and lead it, bands need to do a lot to stand out.  As of right now, SECRET RULE don’t have what it takes to hold my attention. The band has some potential but it seems like it’s still a few albums away.

Songwriting: 4
Originality: 4
Memorability: 4
Production: 5

2 Star Rating

1. The Key
2. The Song of the Universe
3. Empty World
4. Are You Gone?
5. Twin Flames
6. A reverie
7. My Realm
8. Lost Child
9. Imaginary World
10. No More
11. Trip of Destiny
12. I’m You
13. 100 Poets (Calliope)
Angela Di Vincenzo – Vocals
Andy Menario – Guitar and Loops
Michele Raspanti – Bass
Nicola “Nyk” Corrente – Drums
Record Label: Pride & Joy Music


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