Despite this being the second album from Sharone & The Wind, it feels like a debut. An introduction to something new, with a sense of purpose and an air of arrival. And you can see why when looking into the band’s brief history. Having undergone a nearly complete lineup change in 2017, this new album ‘Enchiridion of Nightmares’ is new work to reflect a new band essentially. And it’s a powerful calling card.
On first glance S&TW could be dismissed as another metal band following in the footsteps of Evanescence, Lacuna Coil etc. but it’s lazy journalism, lazy of the listener and there is a lot more to be found here than that. The vocal similarities can’t be dismissed, but a classical vocal delivery is always going to hold some comparison. There are moments of goth at it’s purest, harking back to Type O Negative and The Cure. The piano work is delicate and well thought out, hinting at Einaudi and sometimes veering off into more playful territory like on ‘Fire’, where it lands somewhere between 1940’s German cabaret and a classic horror film. Lead single ‘Demons’, is a full on epic rock ballad which could easily make it’s way to the larger stages around the world and a platform to give Sharone the room to explore her superb vocal range.
Like most records, it’s not without it’s faults. I feel the guitar could have been more of a prominent weapon employed and it is quite piano heavy. Whether that was a specific choice and the direction the band chose, or simply a mixing approach is hard to say. But I will be keen to see how they develop with their forthcoming material and as a band as a whole. I can’t imagine they’ll be delving into mathcore anytime soon but they have the musical space and the talent to explore some interesting horizons in their future.
As a whole, this is a powerful delivery and a solid record. At no point is there any filler or half arsed songs. Keeping the listener on it’s toes with tempo changes, unexpected musical developments and avoiding the overly done cliched approach that could have easily slipped into a record like this. Personal highlight would be ‘Graveyard’. An epic and sweeping song and a sense of what could be achieved, which if the band follows through on can see them taking things to great heights.