Monday, 20th November 2017. 1:59:08pm ET

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Artist: Elis
Album: Griefshire
Label: Napalm Records

Like a lot of the bands of this genre, Elis was fronted by a female vocalist and her name was Sabine Dunser. I use the term was because Sabine died in 2006 from a cerebral hemorrhage. Though she died at the young age of 28, she left behind three Napalm Records releases with her bandmates from Liechtenstein and two with her band prior to Elis, Erben der Schopfung. Having passed away shortly after recording Griefshire, this album seems to have been very near and dear to her heart as she was said to have called the album "her baby". Griefshire is a concept album about two brothers who are religious fanatics and their search for salvation, eternal truth, and love. It is evident by this album that Sabine definitely had a strong voice, and her German accent seemed perfect for the heavier style of gothic metal played on this album. I'm not talking heavy like you would hear on a death metal album but compared to some of the really watered-down goth metal bands out there, the guitar riffs played by Pete Streit and Christian Gruber on most of the songs here are heavier than many of their contemporaries. Of course you can't release an album like this and not have keyboards for atmosphere and they aren't as bad as I was expecting. In fact, on some of the songs on Griefshire, the keyboards mixed in quite well with the violin played through out the album. A decent backbone is provided by Max Naescher on drums and Tom Saxer on bass while Tom also helps out with some backing vocals. It's sad that Sabine wasn't able to see her final project come to light as I'm sure she would have been proud of Griefshire. Though I'm not a huge fan of this style of metal like I said, this was a pretty good album.


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