Sjak : Maybe that a couple of our readers still can remember the Norwegian band Highland Glory’? This heavy metal outfit has until now released a three-some, quite enjoyable albums, being ‘From The Cradle To The Brave’ (from 2003), ‘Forever Endeavour’ (from 2005) and ‘Twist Of Faith’ (from 2011), but after that it has become awfully quiet around Highland Glory. Without a doubt that is due to the fact that shortly after the release of the third album guitarist/keyboard player Lars André Larsen, drummer Morten Færøvig and female singer Trine Elise Johansen have left the band and have formed the new outfit Angel Heart together with bass player Øystein Aaseby Pederson, which will bring their eponymously entitled debut album to market in May via Mighty Music.
Angel Heart plays melodic metal with the necessary progressive influences, in which the hypnotic riffs of Larsen and the great voice of Johansen are the most important elements. The opening track ‘Burning Desire’ unfortunately doesn’t really show the true force of the band yet, as this tune is certainly not one of the best of the album. That however certainly applies for the great ‘Run Away With Me’, the lovely ‘She Is Strong’, ‘My Spirit Lives On’ and album closer ‘Sailing Against The Wind’, on which especially female singer Johansen proves to have a fantastic voice. On a number of songs female violinist Sareeta is contributing, who is especially known from her work with Borknagar and Solefard, and her contribution adds quite a lot of value to the overall sound of Angel Heart.
All nine tracks on offer are so catchy that you won’t be able to get them out of your head after just a few listens and especially the somewhat slower tunes are performed in a very tasteful manner. Angel Heart has taken a first good step with this debut album and everybody that’s really into spherical, intelligent and well performed melodic metal with female vocals will definitely be able to appreciate what Angel Heart has to offer. The song material is not distinctive enough yet to let the band join the premier league of the genre, but this debut album certainly shows that we’re dealing with very experienced musicians who know how to write a great tune. Therefore I’m quite curious how this band will develop themselves in the future, as ‘Angel Heart’ shows that they’re definitely a band with an above average dose of talent.