Vera : Beware, this is another weird case: an instrumental record on which the ‘vocal’ part exists of samples. More precisely original archive recordings of famous poets from the past. That happens on a bed of an opulence of keyboard wizardry, guitar solos and melodic riffs. All this comes out of the brain of the Italian multi-instrumentalist Alessandro Sicur. His curriculum vitae is strange as well. In 1998 he released a demo, inspired by the doom/gothic bands from the nineties, such as Tiamat, Samael and The Gathering. He got encouraging reviews, but preferred to go on with the progressive rock band Blind Mirror and released the album ‘Above The Stars’ with them in 2001.
In the meantime he kept on writing songs and late 2017 he could release his debut album ‘The Waving Flame Of Oblivion’ independently. I think this will mainly appeal to progressive rock fans, one can call this cosmic rock or fluttering soundscapes too. Nevertheless the man claims to be influenced most of all by doom (Candlemass, Black Sabbath), so that songs like ‘The Hollow Men’ (with reciting of a poem of T.S. Eliot all the time) and ‘The Discouraging Doctrine Of Chances’ (again with constant voice on top of the musicianship) should include doom influences. Very few though. However, the thing that leaps more to the eye is the keyboard based songs, with electro and ambient sounds. They are a majority, but fortunately they are also regaled with loads of guitar skills with tight riffs and pretty fine soloing. Opener ‘Distant Karma’ and ‘Shadowplay’ are good examples of that. Yet this album rather feels like a soundtrack or as background music while doing something else. Although he took care about nice melodies, everything starts to sound the same in the end, even if the dramatic French voice in ‘Electro-choc’ is okay for a moment and Dylan Thomas does a pompous elocution during ‘A Few More Steps’.