Review | Eleine – We Shall Remain
Atomic Fire Records
Eleine are the symphonic heavy metal band revolving around eye-catching (tattoo-)model Madeleine Liljestam and guitarist / songwriter Rikard Ekberg. Operating under this moniker the band has released 4 full-length albums of which their previous offering `Dancing in Hell’ impressively marked territory amidst the vast majority of genre-mates. Increasing strength, the band fluently blended key ingredients from the genre with a darker atmospheric subnote and influences from black -and death metal as well as thrash and heavy punchy grooving structures. The album garnished attention and this is the follow-up to establish the band’s fame.
DARK EPONYMOUS TRACKS
Though only running for 37 minutes, `We Shall Remain’ weaves the previous offering into format. Reinforcing the powerful base from its predecessor, the new songs swing forward with intense power while making them collide with more memorable vocal lines and melodies. Not dropping their zeal and ardour is key and Eleine succeeds, especially with Ekberg’s intense riff delivery and frequent chord progressions. The level of intensity works on the vast majority of songs. Dark eponymous tracks such as the volatile and inflammable ,,Promise of the Apocalypse” drone on ominous and sincere metal prowess, and the shrugging opened ,,Suffering” showcases impressive and constant changing riff and guitar-melody discharge. The melodic gloom balances the biting harshness perfectly.
The impeccable ,,Through the Mist” unleashes crunchy riffs and drum propulsion with urging tempo. The thermal vocal interaction between Liljestam and Ekberg is adding to the sonic tension of the song. Especially the singer herself marks territory in her melodic delivery of the towering chorus, while not losing appeal. Her versatile delivery is eloquent all over the album but the repetitiveness of format is smothering the opening trio ,,Never Forget”, ,,Stand by the Flame” and ,,We are Legion”. Great compositions with tons of groove and poise, fall prey to a very recognizable structure of lyrics and vocal delivery. When Liiljestam picks up her craft, her withering vocals are contrasting with the shrugging riffs, injecting wonderful depth.
HEAVY GROOVED SONGS
,,Blood in their Eyes” is an example, as is the powerful death metal ran title track. Bombardments of drums and heavy guitars pull it forward amidst the dense orchestrated keys adding pomp and luster. The sonic low is guarded by growling bass and the song sees Liljestam radiate personality. Moaning and soaring into pitching chants, she marks the quality. Reaching the chorus, the song displays Eleine’s unmistakable talents crafting extremely heavy grooved songs with insane melodic adroitness.
Straying from the intensity the band’s delivery, ,,War Das Alles” echoes with different tone. Lower throb, different dynamics, the song unfolds towards a harsh Ekberg growled mid-section full of death metal thrive, while returning to form with melancholic drama. We heard it all before, yet the death-tracks on the song are making it worth mentioning as it defines the variety Eleine offers.
ELEINE – THE CONCLUSION
`We Shall Remain’ is a logical step forward from `Dancing in Hell’, but not a leap. Key ingredients well mastered, the band is overall very steady operating but somewhat fails to live up to expectation. The predictability of the first three songs is risky and `We Shall Remain’ could have benefitted from a different running order to break this opening trio. Nonetheless, Eleine delivers a very solid record with tons of groove and guitar dynamics, that will find its way to the fans. Perhaps I raised the bar a little too much…
Listen in and enjoy the ride!
Release date: 14 July 2023