I’m trying to figure out why people still listen to symphonic power prog in 2016. Ever since some bands released great music in this genre during the 2000s, many others have been trying to imitate them ever since. Temperance look and sound like they could fit well in this category: They are female-fronted and Italian; they play symphonic power metal with progressive influences and recently supported Nightwish on a couple of shows. I don’t even know why I’m bothering to give bands like these a chance. To me, they all sound very similar, if not the same. And as expected, I have very mixed feelings about their brand new release – which is probably the hottest new album in the symphonic power metal world right now.
“The Earth Embraces Us All” has been giving me headaches for quite a while. At first, it didn’t sound like anything worth listening after finishing this review. This album starts to show its true colors only after a couple of listens, though.
To begin with, Temperance are playing with several influences to spice up their distinct power prog sound: You will find electronic and folk metal parts or even jazzy interludes. This shows that Temperance are actually trying to set themselves apart from other bands. Also, this entire mix of different styles and influences will probably please a wide audience ranging from prog to modern metal fans. Even the songwriting itself isn’t bad. If you ever wondered how Amaranthe and Nightwish combined would sound like, check out “At The Edge Of Space”, “Empty Lines” or “Unspoken Words” to find out.
I guess everyone should have noticed by now that I’m struggling to actually focus on anything these guys are doing well. That’s because I can barely stand the vocals on this album. It would probably sound way better with an enjoyable singer. And no, this is not even one of those voices you could get used to after a while, like James LaBrie’s, for instance. It still makes me cringe every time the female singer cranks out some high-pitched vocal. Hell, who told this girl she can sing? The male singer sounds just fine, though.
From all the power prog bands I know, I do grant Temperance their effort to sound authentic and to bring some diversity to such a deadlocked genre. You will have to like or at least don’t mind the vocals to enjoy this album. Finally, “The Earth Embraces Us All” is not a bad release at all, there is just a little bit too much of everything for me to fully enjoy it. (Insert another complaint about the vocals here.)
01. A Thousand Places 06:29
02. At The Edge Of Space 04:28
03. Unspoken Words 04:00
04. Empty Lines 04:26
05. Maschere 03:25
06. Haze 04:20
07. Fragments Of Life 03:44
08. Revolution 04:16
09. Advice From A Caterpillar 08:11
10. Change The Rhyme 04:21
11. The Restless Ride 12:42
Label: Scarlet Records