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LEAVES' EYES Myths Of Fate

By Wendy Jasper, Black Metal Aficionado
Saturday, April 6, 2024 @ 9:21 AM


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LEAVES' EYES
Myths Of Fate

AFM Records




In the ever growing realm of symphonic metal, there are a few bands who have stood the test of time and LEAVES' EYES is one of them. The band has had some personnel changes that created a significant shift from their earlier music, the most prominent being the departure of Liv Kristine from the vocal role.

It seems like yesterday that I was with Liv and Alexander Krull for an interview in Dallas, and then just as quickly we hear about their divorce and Liv going on to complete her solo projects. I love Liv, and quite frankly I think she is better as a solo artist. I was not prepared for her replacement and wondered what the band would ultimately do during the upheaval that occurred.

Enter Elina Siirala. She was young, yet her vocal style was still that fluid soprano that you would expect in this genre, but she has depth that has increased since she first joined the band. She is more comfortable on stage than she was in the beginning and she elicits a combination of strength and vulnerability that was not as present in the band's early years.

Myths of Fate comes on the heels of 2020's The Last Viking and it's a significantly better album. I have enjoyed it immensely and I think the band has evolved with this record. Their video for "Realm of Dark Waves" is visually striking and is one of my favorites on the album.

The clear standout on the record is "Sons of Triglav" and this melds Alex and Elina's vocal styles together in an interesting way. It hits hard and heavy and is expansive in its symphonic range. Another exciting tune is "Hammer of The Gods" and the band has kept their hands firmly wrapped around folklore for the themes incorporated into the album.

Along with Alex and Elina we have guitarists Micki Richter and Luc Gebhardt. Joris Nijenhuis steps in on drums and as always, the vocals are shared. They have also incorporated large stage shows over the years that include a full Viking horde and simulated battle scenes and I hope they continue to make it this fun for the audience.

The band has some guests on this album as well. Jonah Weirgarten scored the album and you can hear Lea-Sophie Fischer from ELUVEITIE on the fiddle.

"In Eternity" is emotive and delves deep into the psyche as the vocals swirl and weave throughout the song. It is, at the same time, gut wrenching and it is well done in what it makes you feel when you listen to it.

On previous albums Alex has held a primary vocal spot but his appearances on this album are not as prominent. He has let Elina shine on this record in a way that we didn't hear on previous releases. Though he lends his voice to some of the tunes, he has largely remained behind the scenes this time and as always is the producer and creative director of the entire project. He has perfected the band's art, image and sound and this album is a testament to the group's hard work.

LEAVES' EYES is a band that is crossing cultural genres as well. Not only are they heavy, but they are folk, gothic, symphonic and ambient. This is a tone that the band has been able to perfect over the years and it works for them. What is even better is that they can do it live and if you have never seen them, I highly recommend it.

5.0 Out Of 5.0


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