EDGE OF PARADISE – Halo
RELEASE YEAR: 2023
BAND URL: http://www.edgeofparadiseband.co/
Also American and not that far removed in vein from A Dark Halo (whose 2nd full length I’ve just reviewed giving it a 5/6) the Californian alternative rock and metal quintet Edge Of Paradise released their 5th album Halo²⁰²³ on Frontiers Records on July 14th to follow Immortal Waltz²⁰¹⁵, Alive²⁰¹⁷, Universe²⁰¹⁹ and The Unknown²⁰²¹ since the 2011 formation. The Californians are definitely more alternative rock than metal but they pack a punch in a nü metallish White Zombie sounding title track opener, “This Is Personal” and even Marilyn Mansonic on “Dark” (sadly, the least exciting track), but I appreciate the The Cure-ean “Unbeatable” or the melodeathly closer “Another Life” in the way of a different vibe. Founders Margarita Monet (vocals, keyboards) and Dave Bates (guitars), David Ruiz (guitars), Kenny Lockwood (bass) and Jamie Moreno (drums) are good song writers with a good sense of melody but they seem to have trouble maintaining the momentum, although not for the lack of trying for variety, something they’re a lot more successful on in the second half, while, on the first, the songs mostly sound like they were cut from the same cloth, especially the first 3 which give an appearance of a “hit after hit” structure. They do succeed, though, on the excellent “The Faceless” which recalls the 1999-2005 Paradise Lost and that track seems to form a connection with the closer, what with “who is the victim?” in the former answered with “who is the victor?” in the latter. Being a great fan of Dark Tranquillity I smile at the gothic references from their We Are The Void²⁰¹⁰ album in both “Don’t Give Up On Me” and “Another Life” but I must confess that, while Margarita’s Amy Lee-like (Evenascence) cleans (the closer’s exasperated dramatic ending “…to find you” comes to mind) are captivating her constant high pitched screaming is an acquired taste as I have a feeling if she toned it down a little it would have fit the music better. In all, a good but not great album with not enough to truly stand out from the pack of like acts.