On the face of it, Aussie Goths As Angels Bleed appear to be well placed for a serious tilt.
They've got enough Metal in the sound to keep old heads like me happy, enough cod-orchestral mayhem and blood-drenched vampiric imagery going on to attract the interest of denizens of the night everywhere and, most importantly, their songs have go enough of a melodic edge to ensnare casual unsuspecting punters were they to get the chance to hear this blasting out of a shoe shop stereo of a Saturday arvo.
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So, a pleasingly universal appeal has been identified, but you're after specifics, right? Essentially a duo consisting of vocalist Avelina De Mornay and all round instrumental guru Von Lehmann (though the band expands to a quintet for live actions), AAB crank out a nice line in Gothic Metal (you get the sense they'd like it to be a bit more symphonic given a bigger budget) chock full of chunky riffage, some crystalline soloing (Lehmann pulls out a blinder on 'Desire') and De Mornay's strongly alluring vocal presence.
Mixed up together these elements emerge sounding a bit like early Within Temptation (though without ever resorting to tribute band-style reproduction of sound or ideas) or a heavier Evanessence without the bozo nu-Metal trappings.
It's a heady mix, and you get the sense that were to hail As Angels Bleed from the US or Europe they'd already be making some major waves in the rooms of teenage Metalheads (both male and female) worldwide.
They've certainly got the songs – the excellent 'I Drown' has 'hit' woven deep into its purple velvet cape, and the image certainly doesn't appear to be a problem.
Can they make the leap into the big time on the back of this record? It's certainly good enough, but you and I both know that just having the raw talent isn't enough.
But with a bit of luck and a following (black) wind, the future could be bright for As Angels Bleed. Or at least as bright as a gang of vampiric spirits of the night would want it to be, anyways. And you can play your part in their rise to world domination by purchasing this excellent disc – go to it.