Slave To Sirens - Echoes Of Silence (2024)

2024. június 15. 09:20 - Jurancsik Eszter


Lebanon is not usually associated with metal music. But a few years ago, a young Lebanese guitarist, Lilas Mayassi, decided to introduce the world to the spirit of the East. Thus was born the thrash/death metal band Slave To Sirens, whose line-up was not stable for a long time, but in 2023 Lilas found the Hungarian Anita Tóth, known in her homeland from the bands Blood Up (later Insane Within).

So the work on the debut album could begin, Lilas, Anita, Shery Bechara and Alma Doumani recorded ten songs for the album, which was released on 14 June.

The four sirens put their all into the tracks. Anita's voice is excellent, with its typical death-thrash growl, and in a few songs we can also hear her clear voice, such as Mistress of Pain. Already as the singer of Blood Up she didn't let her throat get rusty, but now she has unleashed the monster inside her. Last year's Extinguish The Sun showed us what to expect from the album, a real, unadulterated thrash and death sound - metal girl power. A surprise is Beyond Control, in which Anita sings a few lines in Hungarian. But the rest of the girls are great too. Lilas and Shery's riffs, Alma's bass harmonise perfectly with Anita's otherworldly growls, and the songs sometimes have a black metal element. Professional production from a band who have worked hard to make this album. You can hear the hours of work and energy that have been invested, despite the physical distance between them. 

Now, of course, some people will say: just another all-female metal band... like Nervosa, Crypta, Bloodhunter... but! Slave To Sirens has been around since 2015, and founder Lilas has been working hard to finally get a permanent line-up. It seems that this has finally been achieved and "Echoes Of Silence" is a great introduction. Let's really hope that the follow-up will be just as rocking. Fans of thrash/death metal are highly recommended to listen to this album, which represents not only smash but also melodiousness. 

I should mention here that in 2022, Sirens, a film directed by Emmy Award US filmmaker Rita Baghdadi, the first feature from Natasha Lyonne and Maya Rudolph's Animal Pictures, made its world premiere at Sundance in World Cinema Documentary competition on January 23. The film follows members of Slave To Sirens, as they wrestle with friendship, sexuality, and destruction in their pursuit of becoming thrash metal pioneers. 

I see a bright and wonderful future for the girls, because this album is a strong one. Well done, girls!


"Echoes Of Silence"

Release date: June 14, 2024


Anita Tóth - vocals

Lilas Mayassi - guitars (rhythm)

Alma Doumani - bass

Shery Bechara - guitars


1. Wmd

2. Reborn

3. Ancient Fear

4. Extinguish The Sun

5. Beyond Control

6. Mistress Of Pain

7. Merchant Of Souls

8. Salomé

9. Full Grown Terror

10. Dark Waters








Elysion - Bring Out Your Dead (2023)

2023. március 18. 18:29 - Jurancsik Eszter


Formed in 2006, the Greek band's first album "Silent Scream" was released in late 2009, followed by "Someplace Better" in 2014. I heard their song Dreamer in January 2013, by chance, I was brought to it by YouTube. And I immediately fell in love with their music.

The band, led by Christianna Hatzimihali, became a favourite among fans of gothic metal, their first two albums full of easy-to-listen songs with deep messages, lyrics inspired by feelings of disappointment, pain, hope and renewal.


The band had been silent for years, and although they had said for five years that a new album was coming, we had no real information. It's been almost five years of silence around the band, and one of the highlights of the past year was when I read that they are back in the music scene.

Last year, the silence was finally broken: they announced that there had been a change of members and that the third album would be out in March this year, and they showed fans two music videos: firstly Crossing Over and secondly Raid The Universe, which also showed the direction of the album. 

On 17 March 2023, I finally had the album "Bring Out Your Dead" in my hands, and with its release, the band released their third single, Eternity.

The sound remains the same, but the whole album feels new and fresh. Lead singer Christianna's voice is much more effusive, which suits the melodies perfectly - a great sense of melody has been a big part of the band's previous two albums, and this is no different.

Of course, there is no shortage of slow songs, a sea of emotion - despite the slower pace of Brand New Me and Buried Alive, it is still full of energy.

To sum up, Elysion's third album lived up to expectations. I, as a long-time fan, was very hungry for the new material and I'm totally satisfied with it. Apart from the simplicity of the songs, the deep message and the playing of the melodies are not neglected aspects. I love the album, great job guys.


1. Blink Of An Eye

2. Crossing Over

3. Far Away

4. Buried Alive

5. As The Flower Withers

6. Raid The Universe

7. This Time

8. Brand New Me

9. Blue Seasons

10. Eternity


Christianna - vocals

Johnny Zero - guitars

NiD - guitars

Laitsman - drums

AR - bass

Release date: 17 March, 2023




Enemy Of Reality - Where Truth May Lie (2023)

2023. március 16. 13:44 - Jurancsik Eszter


A few years ago I saw a video on YouTube of a Greek girl singing Nightwish's Bless The Child. I got goosebumps immediately and looked up her work.

This girl was Iliana Tsakiraki, who started her career in Meden Agan and who is a classically trained singer.

She founded Enemy Of Reality in 2013 and the band has released three albums since then, the first being "Rejected Gods" in 2014, followed by 2016's "Arakhne" and "Where Truth May Lie" in February this year.

I was delighted to listen to the first two albums, so I had no doubt that the band would come up with another great album.

The album opens with Final Prayer, a song with an authentic symphonic base, a dramatic and compelling foundation for the rest of the songs. Two video clips of the album have been released so far, Serenade of Death and Downfall, which give an excellent indication of what listeners can expect. 

I wasn't disappointed this time either. Iliana, who grew up in Athens but comes from the island of Crete, boasts a music-loving family who have always supported her on the path she took as a little girl.

Greek mythology has a strong influence on the work of the band, and this album is no different. There is pain and doubt in the songs, but also hope and love of life. The singer's operatic voice and the passion she infuses into the songs takes symphonic metal to a new level. She sings the songs with total passion, every song has that raw power that keeps the album from fading out and becoming boring.


Of course, the rest of the band has done a great job, with heavy riffs and hard drum themes interspersed throughout the music, the symphonic parts harmonising well with Iliana's unique soprano voice and the keyboards blending in perfectly with the dramatic sound. One outstanding example of this harmony is in Tears of Echo, in which Iliana's aria-like parts even bring the dead to life, and if the sky were to fall, her voice can hold it. The listener can feel as if they are in ancient Greece, witnessing the stories.

The album is not lacking in more bouncy songs, such as Long-forgotten, which is sure to become a regular feature at concerts. Similarly dynamic are Deliverance and Goat-legged Deceiver. Baptised in Fire is the album's closing track, which rips your face off with explosive force, and the symphonic sections at the end bring the saga's chronicle to a close. Az amazing ending.

Iliana is able to embody the soul in pain, the struggle, the fury, the sensitivity and in fact all emotions at once. Once again, she has unlocked what is in the back of her throat, with that ancient power that could be called healing power. I really hope to see this band live one day!


But I can't go without saying a few words about the rest of the band. As you can see from the concert videos, Enemy Of Reality is not a band where the frontwoman is out in the spotlight and the musicians are grey figures in the background. You can see the harmony, the chemistry and the fact that they are a perfect unit, and it shows on the album "Where Truth May Lie".

Great work, impeccable vocals, excellent music and professional harmonies.


Label: F.Y.B. Records


1. Final Prayer

2. Downfall

3. At The Edge of Madness

4. The Vineyard Song

5. Serenade of Death

6. Ever-lusting

7. Tears of Echo

8. Long-forgotten

9. Deliverance

10. Goat-legged Deceiver

11. Baptised in Fire


Iliana Tsakiraki - vocals

Philip Stone - drums

Thanos - bass

Steelianos Amoiridis - guitars





Photo credits: Stella Mouzi



Shield of Wings - Unfinished (2022)

2022. március 03. 10:01 - Jurancsik Eszter


The history of Shield of Wings dates back to 2005. That's when the band was born, but the first EP had to wait until 2011, when "Solarium" was released. Since then, they have found a new lead singer, Lara Mordian.

The Chicago-based band's first album, "Unfinished", was released on 11 February and features ten songs representing symphonic and gothic metal, but also a few songs with power metal influences, such as the album opener Crushing Hail.

The band is interested in historical themes, but history can also be played out in us, not just in the world. Like an inner journey. Besides Lara, there is another lady in the band, Aliyah Daye, who uses the growl to complement Lara's clean vocals. They both did a super job on the album.


Lara (left) and Aliyah

The music and the vocals are true, unadulterated symphonic metal, and there's no shortage of tunes that remind us of the Middle Ages. The band is American, but the music has a very European sound and frankly, it's a very pleasant surprise. There's no overpowering in the music and Lara can sing operatic, but she still prefers to use her melodic, storytelling voice, which makes the songs pleasant. Listening to the song Come Home made me cry, it's so emotional.

Wetland came first from the album, followed by Mind of Myth. I loved both songs. Third single was Crushing Hail, which also won me over. I should mention here that not only do the two singers bring their best, but the musicians are also incredibly talented.

The whole album is a bit cinematic, but very likeable and catchy. For fans of symphonic metal this album is a must have. Powerful, dynamic songs, great instrumentation, and the voices of the two vocalists are flawless.


Release date: 11 February, 2022


1. Crushing Hail

2. Native Colossus

3. Breathing

4. Frozen Harbor

5. Cedar

6. Wetland

7. Mind of Myth

8. Sunfire Shower

9. Come Home

10. The Scarred Clay Reshaping 


Lara Mordian - clean vocals

Aliyah Daye - additional vocals, harsh

James Gregor - guitars

Pat Eulitz - drums

Alex Luke - bass





Dust In Mind - CTRL (2021)

2021. november 04. 17:13 - Jurancsik Eszter


On 19 November, French modern metal band Dust In Mind will release their fourth album, "CTRL". I really liked their last album "From Ashes To Flames" (review here in hungarian), so I listened to the new songs with high hopes. Thanks to DarkTunes and Raphael for letting me hear the album before its release!

Last year No Way Out was the first to be released, this year Break, Lost Control, Take Me Away and most recently Synapses.

The album is based on the band's usual modern/industrial style, and the lyrics are as deep as on previous albums. Jennifer Gervais' vocals are equally flawless and powerful, with male vocals playing a significant role.

The band has previously said that the songs are inspired by both world issues and self-awareness, and the album is harder than the first three. There are heavier emotions, and although the guitars are not as deep as on, say, "From Ashes To Flames", the music is really wide-ranging.

Music video for the opener Lost Control is very impressive, an ode to our inner Sun, according to the band. The music video for Synapses shows the band proudly showing off their French roots, with Jennifer singing a verse in French, a cute beret on her head and the Eiffel Tower - not many bands have shot a video there before! I swear, if I were learning French, this band would be my main motivation. Sérieusement!

The lyrics of Empty got to my heart. When you feel empty, at first you think you're lost in the pits of life - but eventually you come out stronger. The song softens up a bit in the middle and then rocks on again.

Jennifer plays with her voice a lot more, for example she lets out some oriental melodies in the song Break - the song was clearly written about the isolation brought on by the COVID-19 epidemic. She sings sometimes with a harder, sometimes more little girlish voice, using her talent in a very versatile way.


Freefall starts off calmly, with melodic guitars and soft vocals, then gets harder and grows into a very likeable song.

Of course, this album also has elements of electronics, which complement the heavy guitars beautifully, creating an absolutely harmonious blend - listen to W.G.A.C.A. for example.

Speak For The Voiceless is perhaps the most dynamic song on the album, a real party song, if the band can get gigging it will be a permanent part for sure. A real headbanging, bouncy song.

No Way Out closes the album. Although the song may seem pessimistic at first, there is hope in the lyrics "Give me faith, something to believe in..." - It shows that we can endure more than we thought we could.


I can't write anything bad about the album, I can say without partiality that the band has given their fans the best album ever. The songs are both hard and melodic, with life-saving lyrics and Jennifer's amazing voice. A passionate and powerful album. It's an album that gives you strength, lets you see hope in the darkest of days and lets you know that you are not alone. Great work, as always. Thank you, Dust In Mind.


Release date: 19 November, 2021

Label: DarkTunes


Jennifer Gervais - vocals

Damien Dausch - vocals (harsh), guitars

Xavier Guiot - bass

Thomas Marasi - drums

Philippe Miralles - guitars







Catalyst Crime - Catalyst Crime (2021)

2021. október 11. 11:23 - Jurancsik Eszter


Gerit Lamm, drummer of German band Xandria, met American singer Zoe Marie Federoff in 2017 with the aim of creating a cinematic metal band. They were later joined by Jonah Weingarten, keyboardist for Danish death metallers Pyramaze, Matt Federoff, Zoe's father who previously played bass for Sage Meridien and Allisan, and Kaelen Sarakinis (guitars) and Chena Roxx (guitars).

Their music combines free-spirited progressive metal, death and symphonic elements, and their first album, out on 22 October 2021, will bear the band's name. The album will be produced by Alexander Krull who is best known for Atrocity and Leaves' Eyes

As an introduction, they chose the song Condemn Me To Chaos, which immediately burned into my brain with its melodic chorus. I looked up the band and I'm grateful to Massacre Records for letting me listen to the album. Thank you!

The symphonic roots of the songs are similar to those of other bands in this genre, but something is different. Zoe's voice has a lovely, pleasant soprano range, she uses her voice brilliantly, and she's also a student of Nightwish frontwoman Floor Jansen, but Zoe is now a singing teacher. She was previously a member of Insatia.


You can hear the thunder in the songs, which is a must in the music of a band with this line-up. Zoe is only 29 years old, yet she has a very mature, strong voice. In the second song, Cognitive Dissonance, for which a music video has been produced, the guest is none other than Swedish singer Jake E, known from Amaranthe, who left the band in 2016.

There's a very strong cinematic line in the group's music, really, like watching a film or a musical. If that was the band's goal, they were very clever in the way they created the songs. Of course the harder line is not missing from the album, for example the song Mother Dearest is a typical party song that will be a permanent feature at the concerts, I'm sure. We also get a less hard, almost slow song, but a very likeable one is Chasing The Ghost, which is almost only towards the end, with guitars and drums. 

Break Even is a highlight of the album. It's hard, it rips your face off and the chorus is epic and cathartic. The chorus of Nowhere Near Death Yet is a bit reminiscent of the early years of Within Temptation, but that doesn't make it bad, in fact it's a great piece of music.

To sum up:

There are innumerable symphonic metal bands with female vocals, but Catalyst Crime is a bright spot in that palette. Somehow different from most bands that can be identified with similar music. I don't know what it is about the band that makes them stand out from the genre, but I can say that the album is surprisingly versatile, colourful and immersive. It takes you out of the grey everyday and Zoe is an extremely talented and likeable young girl who will go far with this group. With such a serious musicians, I didn't expect a bad album with the help of Australian guitarist Christopher Zoupa (Seventh Dan Counterforce, Teramaze). I also have to compliment the producer of the album, Alexander Krull, who did a great job.


Release date: 22 October 2021

Musicians (album line-up):

Zoë Marie Federoff - Vocals
Christopher Zoupa - Guitars
Kaelen Sarakinis - Guitars
Matt Federoff - Bass
Jonah Weingarten - Keyboard
Gerit Lamm - Drums


1. With Only The Sun As My Witness (Intro)
2. Projection Of My Mind
3. Condemn Me To Chaos
4. Mother Dearest
5. Twice Upon A Time
6. Cognitive Dissonance (Feat. Jake E)
7. Break Even
8. Chasing The Ghost
9. Nowhere Near Dead Yet
10. Without Anesthesia
11. Not Even Once
12. One And Counting (Outro)

Label: Massacre Records



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