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The Raven Age - Exile

The Raven Age
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 01 November 2021, 9:10 AM

Sometimes, in personal reflections, I think that the most musically accessible Modern genres in Metal and Rock are trying to fit in the space left for Glam Metal (in the 80’s) and Grunge Rock (during the 90’s). This fact is due the strong melodic appeal of some, and the load of musical accessibility is extremely strong. I don’t believe that it’s kind of opportunist thought, but it could explain works of bands as the UK-based quintet THE RAVEN AGE, as shown on “Exile”.

This release is, in reality, a compilation. And the material choice seems to be the most accessible songs they did release throughout their 12 years musical career. The songs are some from studio releases (in an acoustic form), two are new songs (“No Man’s Land” and “Wait for Me”), and 4 of them are live shots. Taking the idea of working on an acoustic melodic form, it can be said that things worked in a very good way. But this isn’t a release to know their work, because one can think in many possibilities when hearing to “Exile”, but not that they’re a Metal band (only if one can hear the live songs). The sonority is the right one for such kind of release: clean and defined, but in a form that makes things flow with an organic feeling. It’s like a rehearsal recorded in excellent studio conditions. On the live songs, the same idea: to make things clean and defined, but never overloading on overdubs and digital editions. Well, let’s thank that George’s father isn’t the producer of the album.

“No Man’s Land” and “Wait for Me” are the new songs, both showing an introspective insight, deeper and melodic, both being able to play on the radios for non-Metal public. “Fireflies”, “As the World Stood Still”, “A Look Behind the Mask”, “Dying Embers” and “Hold High the Fleur de Lis” are the acoustic ones, and of course the focus is in a melodic approach, all of them showing a melancholic feeling (maybe due the pandemic, or maybe the melodic appeal of their music). And the live shots “Seventh Heaven” (recorded in Santiago), “Angel in Disgrace” (of a show in Los Angeles), “Surrogate” (this one on a gig in Vancouver), that shows the real band’s musical work: savage, modern and based on hooking melodies. It’s a very pretty good band, indeed.

For now, “Exiled” sounds good, but once more: it’s not a good release to begin with THE RAGE AGE’s music.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. No Man’s Land
2. Wait for Me
3. Fireflies
4. As the World Stood Still
5. A Look Behind the Mask
6. Dying Embers
7. Hold High the Fleur de Lis
8. Seventh Heaven (live in Santiago)
9. Angel in Disgrace (live in LA)
10. Surrogate (live in Vancouver)
11. Forgotten World (live in London)
Matt James - Vocals
Tony Maue - Guitars
George Harris - Guitars
Matt Cox - Bass
Jai Patel - Drums
Record Label: EX1 Records


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Edited 30 September 2022

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