CELLAR DARLING – This Is The Sound
After splitting with Eluveitie in 2016, three members would form Cellar Darling – embodying a new wave of heavy rock with obvious folk tinges because of their previous work. "This Is The Sound" as a debut album has a leg up on the competition, featuring stirring melodies from Anna Murphy, large, brooding riffs from guitarist/bassist Ivo Henzi and the wonderful drum backbeats of Merlin Sutter. The hurdy gurdy aspects come in select spots, as "Avalanche" and "Challenge" attest.
Much of the songwriting and execution moves through alternative/modern rock textures, yet not succumbing to commercial pressures or tricks. Anna’s voice in particular can be dark or gothic, semi-operatic or angelic, all in line with the mood of each song and the necessary feel she chooses to put across. The groovy, simple chugs against a more punk-ish tempo make "The Hermit" pulsate – the softer keyboard underpinning also very enchanting to help the track move you on multiple levels. Breathers such as "Water" or "High Above These Crowns" provide that instrumental or ballad/theatrical dynamic to stretch Cellar Darling and their fans. Painting pictures with storytelling lyrics of adventures and bedtime-oriented poetic tales that may seem dream-like, it’s hard not to be swept away by hearing "Fire Wind & Earth" or the closer "Redemption".
Those who believe this is a natural extension of their previous work will be in for a surprise – Cellar Darling appear content to explore more of this Lacuna Coil/ The Gathering style of progressive alternative heavy rock, and it suits them well. Already making a heady impression out of the gate, the future indeed looks promising and hopefully there will be plenty of festival appearances and touring action to take these tracks to the stage.