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On disc: TBC

28 Days - Claudia Ehrhardt - 6 stars

28 Days

28 Days
(STF Records - 2010)

If you name a band TBC mix-ups are preprogrammed. In this case we talk about the Austrian symphonic gothic metal band and their album 28 Days.
The five-piece kicks off with the title track which gives you a first impression about their sound. A title like Fire, Wind, Steel make me think of Virgin Steele, but musically the Austrians are presenting something different. Natascha and Steve are trained singer and their voices work well together. At Endless War heavy riffs open up, and even if Steve's keyboard joins in the song is heavier - partly due to the more aggressive vocals. Heavy riffs, partly a bit thrashy, and melodies they combine here - and for a moment sound a bit like Iced Earth -, but then they add backings which give the song a different atmosphere. With Angel del buio they present a piece with operatic vocals and which is obviously inspired by classic composers, even if later in the song they add some heaviness. A dramatic piece which seems like it's been taken off a conceptual album or a metal version of an opera piece. Steve adds some growls which gives it a black-ish touch - for a moment. The opening part of Last Supper reminds me a bit of Savatage... Then more classic citations, so perhaps TSO describes it better... It leads over to Piss On My Head where the guitar picks up the classic elements. Steve takes over the microphone and the song becomes an up-tempo metal tune with neo-classical elements. Then they storm off in a thrashy passage spiced up with deep growls, just to change again and offer a more Gamma Ray-esque part. At Schützengraben they use German lyrics and the song has a dash of Rammstein - plus operatic vocals by Natascha. To name a song The Story Of Fucking Pure Metal and to add some operatic vocals to thrashy riffs just seems not right. Also the guitar solo seems out of place... So their walk on the razor's edge continued and showed more facets of their sound, but still they can't hook me up.
The album is a sonic roller coast ride through different genres. Somehow the album is like a compilation, coz the variety of sounds is vast. It's almost like you listen to different bands and that's my main criticism, the album has no flow. It isn't homogenous. Perhaps they should consider a concept album.... Live it might work better... In my opinion it won't be easy for TBC, coz even if people will like one or the other song, most won't get into their mix. Check them out at their MySpace!

6 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


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