Recent Reviews

12.11.2017

05.11.2017

29.10.2017

22.10.2017

15.10.2017

[ More Music Reviews ]


Vuur: In This Moment We Are Free Cities
Vuur - In This Moment We Are Free Cities CD Album Review

Vuur: In This Moment We Are Free Cities

Progressive Metal
3.5/5.0

Dutch vocalist and songwriter Anneke van Giersbergen makes her return to progressive music with a brand new band Vuur, translated from Dutch as fire, passion or drive. She surrounds herself with a crew of accomplished musical Netherlanders to create the debut album In This Moment We Are Free Cities. It's something of a concept album for van Giersbergen, representing her reflections upon the many world cities she has visited in her travels as international musician with The Gathering, Devin Townsend, and recent solo work.

Vuur Band Photo

Vuur

That ambitious thematic idea and van Giersbergen's reputation as a melancholic operatic singer was enough to capture my interest for the first spin of the album. But moving through the album, I began to wonder if my expectations were misplaced. In contrast to her light and quiet solo work, Vuur turns on heavier progressive metal, even a more d-tuned version of the modern type. Largely, the song arrangements consist of heavy, fierce, sometimes razor-edged riffage paired with a thick and heavy bottom end. Above this floats Ms Giersbergen's lilting operatic voice. Though easily heard, she's difficult to understand within the heavier context. Have your lyric booklet handy. While there is some variation in composition among the song, this pattern essentially informs the entireity of In This Moment We Are Free Cities. Alternatively, one of the best features is the abundance of impressive guitar lines and solos. Even so, with the previous observations, I was inclined to be either dismissive or ambivalent about the album.

Nevertheless, some high points can be found in various songs. Speaking of strong guitar parts, the flourish at the start of Days Go By (London) is rather vigorous and inspired. Killer solos can be found elsewhere as within Your Glorious Light Will Shine (Helsinki) and Valley Of Diamonds (Mexico City). Not everything has to be heavy bluster. The Martyr And The Saint has a real jazz fusion feeling in the instrumental section of the latter third. Also, Freedom (Rio de Janeiro) twists in some light and beautiful acoustic guitar work. Similar in a sense is Reunite! (Paris) where the first half features van Giersbergen's lighter voice over acoustic guitar, before venturing into heavier realms in the latter half.

When you take into account my initial observations (second paragraph) with the more specific observations of the last, the best conclusion to make is that In This Moment We Are Free Cities requires some some serious attention to dissect its nuances. But isn't that the inherent nature of progressive music? With that said, your interest should be piqued as well. Take some time to listen to and engage with Anneke van Giersbergen's Vuur and In This Moment We Are Free Cities, you may be intrigued with her latest progressive metal project.



CraigHartranft.net - New fiction, crime fiction by Craig Hartranft

The Bottom Line

Take some time listen to and engage with Anneke van Giersbergen's Vuur and In This Moment We Are Free Cities, you may be intrigued with her latest progressive metal project.

Find A Review

Alphabetical Index

a b c d e f g h i j
k l m n o p q r s t
u v w x y z #
Album of the Week
Click to read the Lady Beast - Vicious Breed CD Album review

On the heels of 2016's EP Metal Immortal and the promise of a new album, Pittsburgh's Lady Beast makes good, delivering their third long player, Vicious Breed. Now signed to Italy's Cruz Del Sur Music ... [ Read More ]