Having made a striking entrance and impression with debut EP Breaking Free in 2013, Danish rock band Forever Still were one of the eagerly talked of emerging bands with their imaginative and powerful blend of emotive melodies and anthemic muscle. It was a release still luring in new appetites and passions for its gothic and melodic metal infused sounds across the following year, including awakening our attention on the Copenhagen quartet. Now the band has not only reinforced that rich introduction but pushed their presence and creativity to another level with its successor the Scars EP. Released in the final excited throes of 2014, the three track release is a proposition to stir the blood and inflame the senses with songs as soaked in diversity as they are creative drama. It is an encounter which seduces through the siren-esque vocals of Maja Schønning aligned to evocative melodies, and roars with nostrils flared through raging riffs and formidable rhythms. That alone makes for a potent canvas upon which the band spins aural colour and imagination drenched enterprise; quite simply it is a treat of a proposition.
Formed in 2010 by Schønning and Mikkel Haastrup (bass, guitar, keys), Forever Still has seemingly shown little hardship in enticing keen hearts and acclaim from those it has lured in through their previous release and songs as well as their impressive live shows. Playing events like Denmark’s Nordic Noise Festival and M’era Luna Festiva and the unleashing of the Flemming Rasmussen produced Breaking Free has helped push the band into a broader and hungrier spotlight, but ahead of the band’s first album this year, it is easy to feel that Scars is the opening signpost in the road to major things.
That thought is instantly sparked by the EP’s title track which opens things up. Scars is a beast of a song, a sinew driven seduction which is as unpredictable and anthemic as it is bewitchingly radiant. As one who always hankers for some kind of snarl in songs, the track is an immediate incitement to the passions. From the first tangy groove and pungent swipe of rhythms, the song stirs up the senses as Haastrup and guitarist Dennis Post cast a spicy coaxing littered by heavy swipes from drummer Jens Berglid. Things relax slightly as the ever alluring tones of Schønning open up the narrative but are soon back growling forcibly as the depth and quality of the lady’s voice adds its own intensity and bellow to the tempest. The song continues to croon and confront with inescapable virulence, every note and syllable coming with its own dramatic and flavoursome adventure. It is a relatively swift encounter, ending far too soon if you ask us, which leaves emotions high and pleasure exhausted.
The following Once Upon A Nightmare explores a mellower though no less imposing landscape. Whereas its predecessor was as metal as it is heavy rock, the second song explores more forgiving scenery with electronic expression and tempestuous melodies thick and provocative alongside the enthralling vocals of Schønning. Lying somewhere between Evanescence and Lacuna Coil, it is a fire of passion and creativity. Guitars and keys spin a riveting tapestry around the vocals whilst Berglid is at times a predator with his aggressive jabs. Admittedly taking longer to tempt than the opener, the song is soon igniting the same rapture with its distinctly different persuasion.
The closing Miss Madness brings a classical charm to its power ballad seeded, the band showing yet another twist to their sound and invention. It is not a song which finds the same heights as the first two for personal tastes, but with emotion binding vocals and intimately immersive sounds it only leaves appetite for the band and its rich varied sounds greedier.
Anticipation for the debut Forever Still album is building into a thick buzz thanks to the band’s two EPs, but you get the feeling even as Scars reveals even greater depth and broadness to their sound that we have seen nothing yet.
The Scars EP is available as a name your price download now @ http://foreverstill.bandcamp.com/album/scars-ep-name-your-price
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