Symphony of Delusions - Metal-inside.de
20th of May 2005
These Finnish newcomers really surprised me! I expected another boring melodic metal disc when I first glimpse on the cover, but I really enjoyed what came out of my boxes then made all my fears disappear at once. BLIND STARE could be put into the Cross Over Brutalo category - meaning Power Metal influences mixed with Thrash/Death Metal and some Black Metal, clean vocals and impressive choirs with growling and some additional keyboards totally fitting in there - and all this together sounds like Children Of Bodom meets Wintersun. Honestly that's everything but innovative or earth-shattering. But definitely well made. The six Suomis found the balance between melodious and heavy parts on their debut and show all this in good songs like the opener "Central Theory" being very catchy, the epic "Ender", the classical bombastic "An Insane's Diary pt. II" (incl. orchestra), the straight "Shotgun Symphony" etc.. Fortunately there are no unpleasant side effects, so that I can speak of a great debut here.
Diese finnischen Newcomer haben mich wirklich überrascht! Beim ersten Blick auf's Cover hab ich irgendeine Melodic Metal Scheibe mit viel Gedudel erwartet, was dann aber aus meinen Boxen kaum, hat mich dann doch sehr erfreut und meine Befürchtungen mit dem ersten Takt in Luft aufgelöst. BLIND STARE fahren auf der momentan angesagten Cross Over Brutalo Schiene, soll heißen hier werden Power Metal Einflüsse mit Thrash/Death Metal und partiell Black Metal, cleane Vocals und imposante Chöre mit Grunzparts gemischt und verbunden mit nie aufdringlich wirkenden Keyboards in ein schönes Gesamtpaket verpackt, das in etwa so klingt, als wenn die Children Of Bodom auf Wintersun treffen würden. Zugegeben, das ist alles andere als innovativ oder gar weltbewegend. Dafür aber sehr gut gemacht. Die sechs Suomis haben auf ihrem Debüt genau die Balance zwischen Melodie und Härte gefunden und dokumentieren das in guten Songs wie dem Opener "Central Theory", der sofort Ohrwurmqualitäten offenbart, dem epischen "Ender", dem klassisch-bombastischen "An Insane's Diary pt. II" (inkl. Orchester), dem straighten "Shotgun Symphony" etc. Ausfälle sind hier erfreulicherweise nicht auszumachen, so dass ich hier getrost von einem tollen Debüt sprechen kann, macht Spaß! (lk)
Review by lk. Free translation by www.finnish-metal.net
Symphony of Delusions - Metalspheres.de
20th of May 2005
Melodic Death with no end... Blind Stare are the next condentors in this genre to gain the fan's attention. A very nice album they have made. "Symphony of Delusions" offers a couple of nice sounds and harmonies to the listener, however the Finns do not completely stick to the Göteborg-school but ad d some modern elements whereas guitars are on the same level as keyboards. Thus compositions like "My black Letter" or "Shotgun Symphony" gain some additional feelings. Yet they did not go beyond their abilities as the album seems to appear a bit unspectacular. The production is clean and effective, but still Blind Stare are lacking something that could help "Symphony of Delusion" to impress me more. Of course you can listen to it for quite some times but at the moment it is nothing more like a "nice soundtrack for every now and then" in my eyes. The album is recommendable for those who like the newer In Flames material or Soilwork, but still it needs a few spins in the player.
Melodic Death und kein Ende... Blind Stare heißen die nächsten Anwärter im Buhlen um die Gunst der Fans. Eine ganz nette Platte haben sie gemacht, "Symphony of Delusions" umfängt den Hörer mit einigen sehr hübschen Klängen und gelungenen Harmoniebögen, gleichzeitig halten sich die Finnen jedoch nicht an die reine Göteborg-Schule sondern arbeiten auch mit moderneren Klangelementen und den Gitarren gleichberechtigten Keyboards, was gute Kompositionen wie "My black Letter" oder "Shotgun Symphony" noch ein wenig aufpeppt. Bäume reißen sie allerdings nicht aus, zu unspektakulär wirkt das Album, um wirklich aus der Reihe zu fallen. Kann man sich häufiger anhören, einen bleibenderen Eindruck als "netter Soundtrack zum Achselzucken" hat es bei mir nicht hinterlassen. Die Produktion ist sauber und druckvoll, aber Blind Stare fehlt das gewisse Etwas, das "Symphony of Delusions" zu einer aufsehenerregenden Veröffentlichung machen würde. Wer auf jüngere In Flames oder Soilwork steht, könnte Gefallen an der Band finden, einige Testdurchläufe sind allerdings zu empfehlen.
Review by Till. Free translation by www.finnish-metal.net
Symphony of Delusions - Inferno mag.
20th of May 2005
8 out of 10
Blind Stare stares at the melodic deathmetal. In their debut album this finish act mixes up growling vocals and clean vocals although the first mentioned is the lead one. The top moments are in songs like Thornhearts where in contrast to the one dimensioned growling a bombastic keyboards and clean vocals come in. Good looking but too informative cover artwork is done by Jan Yrlund. In a nutshell: Symphony of Delusions is a promising debut.
Review by Panu Koski. Free translation by Blind Stare
Symphony of Delusions - Metal Guardian.
20th of May 2005
75 out of 100
My first impression; hey this sounds like old Children of Bodom stuff. The use of the keyboard and the fast guitar riffs, not to mention the screaming grunts, it all sounds familiar. But then something surprising happens in the chorus of the first song. clean vocals. oh my.. That's not CoB like. No that sounds more like Ensiferum. And that marks the end of the comparison with CoB, that band doesn't come to mind anymore when listening to the rest of "Symphony of Delusions".
In the bio Blind Stare describe themselves as 'a fresh package of melodic death metal with fantastic orchestral and synthetic sound worlds without forgetting the rawness of death metal'. And I have to say I agree with them. The great use of the keyboard gives this album a very melodic atmosphere and in some songs even a dramatic Dimmu Borgir feeling with an orchestra. Also the use of both vocals is very refreshing; it gives Blind Stare their own identity in a world that's being flooded with melodic death bands. Normally it takes me months to figure out what someone is grunting, so being able to tell what Eino is "singing" is a big bonus. And that without the lyrics in front of me is very impressive.
The songs are great, very well written. My personal favorite is Thornhearts. I love the intro of rain and the dramatic and epic feel it has. Throw in some female vocals and it could be a Tristania/Epica song. Even my neighbours know this song, coz I've been playing a little loud hehe. All and all this is a great album. So good even that you forget that "Symphony of Delusions" is only the bands debut album and that all the band members are well under 23. Downside to that is that 3 band members are doing their mandatory military service. No more long hair, but hey. hair grows back. So boys, pack up your gear and play some shows outside Finland so that the rest of Europe can be conquered.
Review by Lady Rose
Symphony of Delusions - Metal Invader.
20th of May 2005
4 out of 6
BLIND STARE as it is written in their label's advertising plays melodic Death Metal. In my opinion this is a characterization that's wrong for the band. And that's because they have many influences from a lot of metal styles in their music, so the title "melodic Death Metal" looks poor for their work. They are aggressive, but also melodic, with rough and clean vocals and many changes of tempo in their songs something that makes a nice variety to the whole result of their work, so it doesn't get any boring at all like the most of the releases in nowadays. They are a band that manages to compare both the feeling of the past days (like the 80's) metal with the modern way of metal with good performing and nice tracks and all these with a production in the right way for the modern demands. The only negative thing that somebody may find here is that they don't play something original something that for me is completely indifferent as long as they play what they play in a high standard. If something is good and it is performed properly it is better to be played from many bands so the fans will have more of it. I have to admit the BLIND STARE won my appreciation at once.
Review by Andreas Kourtidis
Symphony of Delusions - Scandinavianmetal.info
20th of May 2005
9 out of 10
I love Finland; this country never ceases to amaze me. During the last couple of years I've lost count on how many new great bands which have popped up from the cold lakes. Blind Stare is yet another new Finnish band which is out with their debut album called "Symphony of Delusions".
What do you get if you crossbreed Avant-garde metal with melodic death metal? The answer is orchestral death metal. Blind Stare tries to be more original than the dozens of other melodic death bands out there with adding orchestral elements like piano work, wind instruments and so on. Blind Stare incorporates real piano sounds - the piano work in the song 'Ender' reminded me of the work Sverd did on the last album to Norwegian Arcturus - "The Sham Mirrors".
'An Insane's Diary Part II' starts with bombastic orchestral elements (think new Dimmu Borgir) and aggressive guitar. After a short while the orchestra is laid to rest and the rest of the band come in. The verse is dominated by melodic guitars and very impressive piano work in the background. This song is the perfect introduction to Blind Stare. Keep in mind that the orchestral elements are used sparingly; they are mostly noticeable in the background. Blind Stare never go over the top in my opinion.
'Shotgun Symphony' is a remarkable good song. In this tune Blind Stare proves that they are truly skilled musicians. 'Shotgun Symphony' is an inferno of sounds. There's a part in part in this song which may turn off many listeners; it reminded me of Children of Bodom's 'War of Razors' - you know when the lead guitar player and keyboardist duelled. Zacharias E. Aarnio, keyboardist in Blind Stare, is really showing off his abilities. I'm a sucker for technical music so this part just made me smile in delight.
All in all, if you're a fan of very melodic extreme metal, orchestral elements, harsh vocals/growls I can guarantee you'll end up loving this album. I'm tempted to label Blind Stare the melodic death's metal answer to new Dimmu Borgir. Blind Stare's foundation is build upon incredibly melodic riffs, orchestral elements (especially impressive piano work). All songs are in the same notion, but Blind Stare makes sure to switch between clean vocals/growls and lighter melodic/orchestral parts in contrast to the faster and more aggressive parts.
Review by stigma
Symphony of Delusions - Sea of Tranquillity
20th of May 2005
4 out of 5
One quick look at the cover at of the debut CD from Finland's Blind Stare easily gives the impression of perhaps progressive or power metal music will be contained within, but in actuality this is excellent melodic death metal, even highly progressive at times. These guys mix death, black, and clean vocals with loads of keyboards, a lethal twin guitar attack, and a furious rhythm section. Fans of Children of Bodom, Mercenary, Dark Tranquility, Arch Enemy, and Dimmu Borgir will find much to like here.
"Central Theory" opens things up in grand fashion, with chugging guitars, sweeping synths, and a myriad of different vocal styles. After the heavy yet melodic "My Black Letter", which has many progressive moments thanks to the intricate keyboard work, the band plows forth with the ominous "Ender", which sees lead singer Eino Tuominen alternating between low register death grunts, growling black metal shrieks, and very melodic and powerful clean vocal passages. If you didn't know any better you would think three different people were singing. The incredibly crunchy guitar work of both Anders Ostrom and Jaakko Lehtinen keep this piece nice and bombastic, as well as on the symphonic "An Insane's Diary Part II", a neo-classical power metal feast with raging rhythms courtesy of drummer Timo Palokankare and bassist Kalle Lahti, and intense orchestral keyboards from Zacharias Aarnio. "The Silent Song" is anything but "silent" as the band kicks up this anthem with beefy guitars, throbbing keyboards, dual leads, a catchy chorus, as well as blood curdling death growls.
Pure maniacal death metal is at its furious best on "All For the Unspoken", featuring some killer heavy riffs, while "Shotgun Symphony" falls heavily in the progressive metal camp thanks to some intricate guitar work, superhuman riffs, manic drum work, and symphonic keyboards. Eino elicits some scary black metal vocals on this one, but they work very well with the furious and symphonic musical accompaniment. After the catchy and churning melodic death metal of "Words of Truth", the band finishes out the CD with the classical inspired "Thornhearts", a driving number highlighted by some tasty keyboard work from Aarnio, crunchy guitar chords, and an effective mix of death and clean vocals.
Symphony of Delusions was a real nice surprise, and I see some big things happening for this band. They certainly have the musical talent, and the songwriting seems to be pretty solid, plus I like the way Tuominen mixes his vocal attack so effortlessly and often during each song. There's a new player on the melodic progressive death metal scene folks, and their name is Blind Stare. Check 'em out!
Review by Pete Pardo
Symphony of Delusions - Strutter
20th of May 2005
7,6 out of 10
Out of Finland comes BLIND STARE, a band that combines Gothic Melodic Metal with a lot of Black-screams and Death-growls, although lead singer Eino Tuominen is also able to sing clean. Instrumental it all sounds very European, very melodic, but sometimes vocally it goes a bit too much into DIMMU BORGIR territory and that's a pity, because when Eino sings clean it does sound quite good anyway. If you're interested in a mix between DIMMU BORGIR, SONATA ARCTICA and HIM, then check out BLIND STARE asap. Compliments to the beautiful frontcover artwork of the CD of BLIND STARE, which shows a beautiful lady.