Image via Blabbermouth
Release Date: October 27, 2017
Artist: Angel Nation
Runtime: 44 Minutes
Label: Inner Wound Recordings
Personnel: Elina Siirala (Vocals), Julia B Cadau (Bass), Lucas Williamson (Drums), Sonny Antoniou (Guitar)
From Angel Nation’s website:
“Angel Nation (previously enkElination) was formed in November 2011 by Elina Siirala. A classically trained former opera singer from Finland, she moved to London in 2008 and fell in love with the power of rock and metal. After playing numerous live shows in and around London, spring 2014 saw the release of their official music video ‘Tears of Lust’ and in April the band supported Van Canto at the Underworld London. Their debut album (Tears of Lust) was launched in July receiving glowing reviews from media all over the world. Followed by a headline release show at The Underworld, Angel Nation also played at Bloodstock festival, Lankafest (Finland) and Dames of Darkness festival.”
Image via Blabbermouth
Left to Right: Williamson, Cadau, Siirala, and Antoniou
Considering I just stumbled upon Angel Nation and their album Aeon, I would be lying to say that I was eagerly awaiting the album’s release since I had no idea of its existence. I had just checked out new metal releases and saw Aeon at the top of the list so I thought, “Why not?” Thankfully, the album was on Spotify, and I eagerly hit the play button on the album’s first track: “Burn the Witch.” The song had an eerie start to it that rapidly picked up with guitar player Antoniou’s solid rhythm and was joined by Cadau’s bass and Williamson’s drums…so far so good, but that wasn’t all. What surprised me was the powerful and cutting, yet soothing voice of Siirala. Having no prior knowledge of the band, I assumed that she had some formal voice training, and it came as no surprise to me to learn that she had classical training. What a talent to be used in metal music!
Upon further digging, I discovered that while the band’s name was still enkElination, they released an album Tears of Lust that heavily featured Siirala’s voice, and relied upon keyboards in many of their songs. Like Tears of Lust, Aeon features Siirala’s vocals throughout, but it also provides solid guitar and drum work throughout that maintain the band’s melodic sound, but also give the album a little bite. This album isn’t thrash metal by any means, but there’s enough meat to the songs musically to keep heavy metal enthusiasts interested enough to fully enjoy Siirala’s vocal prowess.
To be fair to Angel Nation, Aeon is more than just “Burn the Witch”. “Blood Is on Your Hands” contains lyrics empathetic to mother earth and has a guitar riff early in the track that sounds a bit like Kyng. “Farewell” and “Breathe Again” have a larger than life feel, and if you’re into growling vocals, check out “Free.” Coming in at ten tracks and a runtime of 44 minutes, Aeon seemed to be at the right length and surprisingly wasn’t difficult to listen through its entirety in one sitting.
Aeon was a pleasant surprise for me, and if you’re looking to expand your music palate, give Angel Nation a shot. An opera singer coupled with metal music might just be for you!
I’m going to give Aeon a 74%.