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Strale - Bourbon Souls Award winner

Bourbon Souls
by Ashley O'Brien at 26 February 2020, 4:06 AM

STRALE released an intense, gorgeous album, Bourbon Souls, February 2020. Considered alternative metal, it is hard to do the music of STRALE justice, let alone describe the voice of vocalist v. Alarik. Bourbon Souls is powerful, full of strength and emotion. It sounds like it belongs on the soundtrack of your favorite anime. The scope of the music is huge. It just feels large and looming. It is melodic, and the melodies carry the listener far away.

“Wasted” is the rare gem that is fun, meaningful and beautiful. The heavy guitar and pounding drums are accompanied by keyboards and a haunting high-pitched voice.  v. Alarik’s is strangely reminiscent of Joakim Brodén from SABATON: deep, growling and intense. The song is about mistakes made when young and the music perfectly balances walking the line of remembering how fun those mistakes were and how costly they could have been.
Faithless” opens with a building guitar riff that is immediately gripping. Then the song opens into a classic ballad style song.
Parasite,” one of the albums’ singles, is a perfect example of what STRALE accomplishes on this album.

 The style of the band is hard to nail down. A seamless melding of keyboard, heavy metal guitar, deep dark vocals and emotion that almost doesn’t let you come up for air. It is overwhelming, and somehow there is joy in that. It isn’t dated; it’s timeless. It certainly feels like something from the past, but how long ago is impossible to say. Furthermore, so many songs are about nostalgia and regret to their very core, that the songs can’t help but embody the past. But rather than be gloomy or angsty, STRALE finds strength looking backward, which comes out in every song, like a gorgeous ballad. I can’t say I think STRALE is for everyone, but everyone should experience it at least once. And they should enjoy getting carried away.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Straaling
2. Faithless
3. Control
4. Parasite
5. No One’s Around Me
6. Wasted
7. Arnold
8. Where Everything Disappears
9. The King of Silence
V. Ålarik - Vocals
Åndi - Guitars
Rasse - Keyboards
Zapata - Drums
Jahnny - Bass
Rantti – Guitars
Record Label: FDA Records


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