The rise of female-fronted metal bands over the last decade has seen the likes of Nightwish and Evanescence hit huge popularity, and influence a whole new generation of upcoming talent. A common issue is that the singer takes 100% of the spotlight and is flaunted into the public eye, essentially as a solo artist, and the rest of the band become less required as the career spans.
Forever Still are fresh out of Denmark, and have vocalist Maja Shining at the forefront of their new album, ‘Tied Down’, but it’s not enough to escape the generic inevitably of such a stale format. If you listen to singles ‘Awake The Fire’ and ‘Scars’ before listening to the full album, then you’d be surprised by the amount of gothic metal that dictates the rest of the record. The simple lead tracks seem to reach out to a generic crowd that wouldn’t necessarily relate to the deeper cuts on the album.
‘Awake The Fire’ is the more simplified and certainly the most effective song on ‘Tied Down’, but as a stand alone track is too one dimensional to lure anyone in for further inquisition. Although, it is refreshing comparatively to hear ‘Breathe In’ immediately after for a much needed burst of energy that ends with a boost of aggressive screaming that suits the band to a tee.
Shining has a strong and impressive voice, and ‘Tied Down’ is sure to appeal to a symphonic/power metal audience that enjoy the likes of Epica, but the crossover interest is minimal and the lack of variance on the album is disappointing after a couple of interesting songs to start. By the time the title-track kicks in to close the 10 song record, the similarities have become so nulling that a slight change in opening riff sparks the most interest in 30 minutes, only to be kicked back down when greeted with the same old dreary nothingness.
More of the band is needed to succeed here than just emphasising the frontwoman without any substance. What Forever Still have in talent is sadly written off by their inability to back themselves as a complete band, and just remain as another female solo singer and her friends.
Written by Mike Heath (@MikeBeef)
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989. | Aspiring freelance pizza eater.