by Craig Newman
– Columnist —
Norwegian symphonic rock group SAVN have just released a new, eleven-track album of fresh music and this album rocks! It has the right blend of hard and soft energy to keep your body moving. The band is founded by The Sins Of Thy Beloved members Stig Johansen and Anders Thue. The band has been dormant since 2000 following the release of their second album Perpetual Desolation. They decided to start a new band, and Stig asked Carmen Elise Espenæs to write some songs since her band Midnattsol was inactive and she was recharging her creative music and lyrics. They decided to the name the group SAVN with a new sound and vision. The name means “Deprivation.” The lineup is: Carmen Elise Espenæs – Vocals, Stig Johansen – Vocals, Guitars, and Anders Thue – Keyboards.
Right from the first song “Musical Silence” to the last which is a growling version “The Demons In Me”. Yes, there are growls but they don’t over take the songs.
Their music fits with other symphonic metal bands with female lead vocalists that have quality music and vocals. The songs are on emotions and inner self such as: “The Demons In Me” about emotions, questions, and anxiety humans deal with every day. “Hang On,” is about keeping the memories but can’t control the circumstances and time does not stand still. Carmen’s sister, Liv Kristen (Leaves’ Eyes) sings with her on “I Am Free” and is first that they sing together. Michelle Darkness (End Of Green) sings on ‘’The Demons In Me.’’
Adding to the musical side, fiddle players Dag Bjørkedal and Lillian Hodne play a large part adding strings that are provided by the famed Lingua Mortis Orchestra on “Sorrowful” and “Lengselens Hånd” that was directed and recorded by composer and Rage guitarist Victor Smolski.
Overall the sound is compared to other symphonic metal bands, for example, Sirenia, Leaves’ Eyes, Nightwish, Xandria, After Forever and Tristania.
The quality of their music will stand on its own. The release dates for GSA are April 25, 2014; World: April 28, 2014 and for USA/CAN: May13, 2014. It can be ordered from Amazon, iTunes, Sound Cloud and other music retailers.
Genre: Symphonic Metal
Carmen Elise Espenæs – Vocals
Stig Johansen – Vocals, Guitars
Anders Thue – Keyboards
1. Musical Silence
2. Hang On
3. The Demons In Me
4. Longing For Love
5. I Am Free
7. All I want
8. Now Or Never
9. Lengselens Hånd
10. Hang On (Growling Version, Digipak-CD Bonus Track)
11. The Demons In me (Growling Version, Digipak-CD Bonus Track)
Label: CDR Records Norway
Hardrock Haven rating: 10/10