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Wyvern – Radiations Award winner

by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 29 April 2022, 7:01 AM

From their EPK, “we like to call “Radiations” not only an album, but a whole artistic project. We wrote and played all the songs but “Radiations” is much more than that. Indeed, in collaboration with our movie director and friend Nicolas Fournier, we really wanted to go further and make the story behind the songs come to life through a whole mini-series of cinematic music videos. It follows the story of a man who is engaged in a survival in a world that isn’t his anymore, his hallucinations, and his search for answers.” The album contains seven tracks.

The title track is the first song. It begins with clean guitars that build in layers, with tense overtones. The main riff drops and it’s heavy, while electronica swirls in the background. When the main riff hits, suspense gives way to all out terror. The addition of electronic elements really brings the sound to new heights. “Amnesia” begins with a smooth but surly sound, like the vibe you might get from a killer suited up like a Wall Street executive. Progressive elements are more pronounced here, as the song shifts in an out of the light. The harsh vocals towards the end shows the killer’s true self, but by the time you realize it, it’s too late, as blood gushes from your neck.

“Black Medicine” is another dark song akin to the description the band made about the album’s tale. They move like a cat in the night through the shadows, waiting for the right moment to pounce. The music is all over the place, but their transitions are perfectly timed. The sound drops after the half-way mark, and bass guitar struts in, before the original sound returns, thick with keys. “The Race” opens with heavy staccato strikes and some off-beat rhythms. The tones are again fairly tense, and there is a piano interlude with spoken word following the second chorus. A guitar solo follows, and the original sound returns. “Acceptance” is a short acoustical interlude.

“Fading Fear” recognizes the subject’s recess of his earlier concerns. Smooth, mellow tones with piano and harmonized vocals carry the song forward. The tones are reflective and sobering, but also with a hint of hope. “The Traveler” closes the album. Thoughtful and brooding tones open the album, with velvety vocals. A crunchy guitar riff keeps the melody line intact, and harsh vocals enter, signifying anger along the way. Spoken words tell the tale of a weary traveler near the end of his rope. Clean guitars take the song to completion, but is this the end of his tale?

Throw all conventions that you think you know about Metal out the window when taking in WYVERN’s “Radiations.” The French are pretty well-known in the Metal scene for their originality and uniqueness, among other things, like their prowess, which is as unassuming here as it is impressive. The album has seven distinct offerings that are conscious and dynamic, and hike you through the tale over rough cliffs and gentle pastures. The music is a mosaic painted by a master artist, but the songs are also very catchy and accessible. I love everything about this album.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Radiations
2. Amnesia
3. Black Medicine
4. The Race
5. Acceptance
6. Fading Fear
7. The Traveler
Julien Wetterwald – Guitars, Vocals
Laurent Martin – Synths
Aurélie Martin – Bass
Alexandre Pires – Drums
Record Label: WormHoleDeath Productions


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