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'Rise Of The Empress'
Release Date: 29th September 2014

Ian Sutherland

ian sutherland

white empress

"It might have looked like smoke to those who hadn't been there... but it was steam". So starts the biography as such of new band White Empress and it continues in a similar vein obviously with the idea of setting a tone of violent fantasy and mystery about the band's style.

Behind all the imagery this is the new project from former Cradle Of Filth guitarist Paul Allender. This full length debut album follows up their four track EP from earlier this year.

White Empress are going for slightly different vibe to his previous band with vocals provided by former Luna Mortis member Mary Zimmer but their sound only hints at female fronted symphonic Metal. When it gets down to it this is a riff heavy, dense, growling beast of a band not a million miles from Cradle Of Filth's core sound.

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'The Ecstatic And The Sorrow' does offer some nice melodic vocals and guitars among all that mighty Arch Enemy style riffage and 'Dethroned' has some soaring female vocals in parts but mostly this is about the thrashing power of the sub black Metal 'Darkness Encroaching' and the frantic pace of 'Sven's Tower'.

I have never been a huge fan of Cradle Of Filth but I have to admit that taking some parts of their signature sound and adding in some lighter touches (just touches mind you) and some clean female vocals among the growling does make this debut album from White Empress pretty interesting. However I'm not sure that the songwriting is fully formed enough for my tastes and the production sounds kind of dense and what I would describe as mushy with some vocals and the bass end of the sound buried in the mix somehow.

I must say that the album artwork by Gogo Melone is typically impressive but the music is interesting and powerful without being overwhelming. However if you like Cradle Of Filth, Arch Enemy and/or symphonic female fronted power Metal you might find the mixture of those sounds here of interest.

white empress

Line up:
Mary Zimmer Vocals
Paul Allender Guitars
Jeremy Kohnmann Guitars
Chela Harper Bass guitar
Zac Morris Drums
Will Graney Keyboards


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