Liv Kristine - Enter My Religion
Liv Kristine Espenæs Krull, former singeress of Theatre Of Tragedy and current vocalist of the band Leaves' Eyes, are also sometimes busy with her solo project/band simply named Liv Kristine. She is now following up her last full length album Deus ex Machina (1998) with the new effort Enter My Religion. The previous album has unfortunatly passed me by unnoticed so I can not draw any comparitions between the albums.
This is a bit more laid back then Leaves' Eyes but there are not surprisingly many similarities between the bands. Beautiful melodies, acoustic bits mixed with some heavier parts, and everything carried forth by Liv Kristines angelic voice. I do not know if I am imagining things, but I do not think she sings quite as good as otherwise on this album. It is just not as impressive here and not as intense and present, but since she has an extremely high lowest level it turns out pretty good at the end, to say the least.
The albums starts with one of the better songs. It is partially uptempo and the refrain is a direct hit, but the verses are a bit weak so it does not reach all the way but still it is one of the top songs on the album. After this follows a couple of slower, completely acoustic songs and I have no problem seeing this being hard plugged on MTV as it sounds pretty much like the ordinary modern pop songs that spins there everyday.
With My Revelation, some electric guitars are added and the tempo increases slightly again and the refrain is gold. Beautiful, and for Liv Kristine very characteristic, vocal lines and this is another one of her typical refrains that sticks to your brain. Coming Home takes it down to an acoustic guitar based singer/songwriter level again and is an average melancholic song with nothing extra to it. Trapped In Your Labyrinth is competing with Over The Moon and My Revelation on being the best song on the album and again it is a slightly uptempo one with a more powerful refrain and electrical guitars to back it up. I can admit that I am a big fan of uptempo songs in all genres but I am not that narrow minded that I can not enjoy slow stuff. But it is a fact that on this album the faster songs are the best ones by far. Too bad they are so few. Because beyond this point it is almost exclusivly slow and laid back. Some piano, fragile vocals and some emotional moods with the occasional pop beat. Some of it brings strong associations to Blackmore's Night (especially Blue Emptiness) but even though some melodies are brilliant, I have to say that Ritchie and Candice stand as king and queen on that battlefield.
The exception is You Take Me Higher, which has guitars
and a higher tempo but the beat is kind of weird, as is the vocals and
it is not an especially momorable song. This is well produced and arranged,
but the slower songs are really not that impressive and does not invite
to an immediate wish for another round after the album has finished
spinning. The songs lack that little extra and fall most of the time
under the category average. Liv Kristine sings very beautiful but that
fact can not save this from landing on the grade it now does.