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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Review: Heretic's Dream - Floating State Of Mind

Heretic’s Dream is a new band formed in 2010.

Since their creation they’ve kept themselves extremely busy by playing more than 200 gigs along names like Freak Kitchen, Secret Sphere, Richie Kotzen, Godyva, Eldritch, Crucified Barbara and others. Definitely an impressive achievement!

The busy gig schedule didn’t push back on their creativity and recording. Releasing 2 albums “Unexpected Move” and “Walk the time” and a single by 2013 we’ve arrived at 2016 and their latest offering “Floating state of mind”.

Their style has its roots in progressive metal but you can track down elements from other styles like rock, alternative and more extreme genres like metalcore. The whole mixing genre thing is somewhat common to modern progressive bands since let’s face gone are the days were bands of this genre were notorious for their musicianship and complexity of compositions. I am certain that becoming just another prog/metal band was never their goal, this reflects on their songwriting, production but also on the targeted audience.

Heretic’s Dream musical skills are in good level without flashy work on any department. Interesting riffs and cool bass lines fly all over the place along with unusual vocal lines. Jazzy influences make their appearance in guitar leads in “Master your demons” providing enough diversity while there are plenty of heavy moments in “Golden cage” and “Hide yourself” which is one of the fastest and probably best song in the album.

Unfortunately their production has taken away much of the heaviness that this album could have. Guitars have lost much of their aggressiveness while the vocals dominate the entire album leaving the rest of the instruments slightly in the back, yet thankfully mixing is precise enough so you can hear everything clearly.

Vocals is something that put me off from first listen. Francesca Di Ventura’s voice sounds thin and fragile lacking both in depth and range. Her approach is more suited to more pop oriented music but the biggest problem is the lack of good vocal lines. I failed to find any memorable or catchy parts anywhere. A good example is the song “Secret place” which starts off heavy enough but is dragged down by the poor singing and vocal lines. Another one is “Walk alone” starting off with a good and heavy riff that’s ruined by an uninspired verse. If there is one band I could easily compare Francesca’s singing with then it’s Aghora.

With the exception of a couple of songs my interest for “Floating state of mind” quickly faded. While there are definitely noteworthy ideas throughout the album in the end it sounded flat and boring. Getting rid of the need to be appealing by people listening various and more popular genres of music along with lots of work that should be done in the vocal department should definitely create a more interesting result in the future. They definitely have the skills let’s see if they’d capitalize them.

Written by Manos Xanthakis

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