Release DetailsLABEL The End
RELEASED ON 4/13/2004
posted on 9/2004 By:
It may seem a bit pointless for MetalReview to dissect this EP by Dutch gothic metallers After Forever, considering that they’ve already put out a full-length album in the meantime, but if an album comes in the door, we review it. Besides, I think that Exordium is an enjoyable release. This is the band’s first release after the departure of main man Mark Jansen, so there was some trepidation as to what the result would be, but since Invisible Circles has been out for months, that question has been put to rest.
Exordium consists of six songs; an instrumental intro, three originals, and two covers. What defines this band best is the powerful voice of Floor Jansen. Her range extends from highs just shy of the operatic level hit by ladies like Tarja of Nightwish, to a grittier singing voice that evokes 80’s rockers like that woman from Heart. Playing behind her are a solid core of musicians that deliver melodic metal with hints of power and gothic metal. The backing music reminds of bands like Evergrey, Nightwish, Amaran, and naturally, Epica (Mark Jansen’s new and very similar band). Beyond the basic core of guitar/bass/drums there are keys, violins, acoustic guitars, and other fun sounds.
The instrumental track is more expansive than more album intros, where I keep expecting it to break into a full-scale song at any moment…until it ends. Violins create an effectively somber atmosphere, a serious type of mood that permeates most of their works. The intro transitions nicely into “Beneath” - a moderately heavy track. “My Choice” follows, and the mood descends even further, as the doomy acoustic lines and violins drag you in. The last original track is like a shot of adrenaline at this point, as “Glorifying Means” is far heavier than the preceding tracks, including some very welcomed male growls and a catchy chorus by Floor. A rocking cover of Iron Maiden’s “The Evil That Men Do”, and a decent interpretation of Randy Crawford’s “One Day I’ll Fly Away” finish out this EP.
At this point in time, I’d recommend just picking up the newer full-length, Invisible Circles if you can find it. But if not, this is a worthwhile listen for serious fans of After Forever, or just general fans of gothic, female-fronted metal.
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