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Music Review

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Flesh (EP)


Artist: Heylel
Label: Heylel
8 88295 31318 6
Release Date: 29 September 2015

Flesh is a new five-track release from Portuguese band Heylel (which in Hebrew means ‘Shining One,’ ‘Bright Star,’ or ‘Devil’ - forgive me if I have this imprecise). The group incorporates Ana Batista on vocals, Narciso Monteiro on guitars, bass and keyboards, and Filipe Braga on drums and percussion. This is their second release following Nebulae the year before.

Heylel is a band which has managed to pass me by. It’s described as progressive rock/metal – or even symphonic in places – but I would say it’s much closer to the goth metal sound of Lacuna Coil, but maybe slightly lighter. With only five songs, Flesh is more of an EP than a fully-fledged album. However, as far as newcomers to the band are concerned, this plays to its strengths. Listening to the CD on a loop in my car allowed me to experience and savour the sound without being swamped with so much material that none of it sinks in.

From the first track, 'Saints', Ana’s vocal style seems at odds with the music; but, as with Federica Sister of power metal band White Skull, you soon realise the fact the voice doesn’t precisely fit the style means that it stands out as a counterpoint which really changes and aids the uniqueness of the sound.

You might have gathered by now that I like this CD a lot. It’s not brash or raucous, but it is very stylish and never dull. Visiting their website retrospectively has only made me warm to them more, and even want to check them out live. There is a video for the final song, 'Paranoid Hysteria', and a video example from their previous album, to display the movement away from a more experimental arrangement without losing their way.


Ty Power

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