A new Star of Modern Melodic Metal! with Fabienne Erni & Jonas Wolf of ELUVEITIE!
Swiss modern metal upstarts Illumishade unveil their magical sophomore record and Napalm Records debut, Another Side of You, out February 16 2024! Fronted by vocalist Fabienne Erni and guitarist Jonas Wolf (both of Eluveitie) and completed with orchestration and synths by film composer Mirjam Skal, bass by Yannick Urbanczik, and drums by Marc Friedrich, Illumishade balances skillfully between dark and light on Another Side of You. Erni’s radiant charisma shines brighter than ever with her crystal-clear vocal delivery. Wolf’s guitar work surely seems as blazing and emotional as ever, while a fresh dose of modern prog brings a cutting edge to the band’s elaborate songwriting. The successor to Illumishade’s acclaimed debut album, titled ECLYPTIC: Wake Of Shadows, Another Side of You showcases a more modern approach in both lyrics and music at times, yet still transports the listener into an immersive world rich in mesmerizing soundscapes (even enhanced by the Budapest Art Orchestra for certain parts), massive and dreamlike vocal lines, marking the perfect start of a brand new chapter for this promising outfit.
Straight out of the gate, opener “ELEGY” darkens the sonic sky with heavy riffs, ominous soundscapes, and a soothing chorus. Even a Theremin makes an appearance, showcasing the band’s experimental palette right from the beginning. Skal’s ethereal tapestries of cinematic greatness lie heavy over the pounding rhythm section. Even more so on its even heavier relative “CYCLONE”, which expands on this approach, making it the progressive pièce de résistance of the album with its cinematic swathes of sound, Meshuggah-esque lead guitar assaults, and even a majestic finale reminiscent of Pink Floyd having a child with Tesseract. Drummer Marc Friedrich shines bright here, displaying a dazzling array of ballistic fills and complex grooves. On the other hand, there’s “Cloudreader”, a highly accessible, uplifting anthem that descends upon the listener’s heart like a warm autumn sun. The highly dynamic and intricate drum work gives it a welcome twist, while modern metal powerhouse “Here We Are” impresses with a stomping chorus and an exciting variety in its middle part. Illumishade surely is no stranger to ballads, as “Fairytale” is loaded to the brim with emotions, proving that Fabienne Erni without any doubt one of the most talented vocalists in the current metal scene, reminiscent of her grandiose performance on ECLYPTIC’s “Rise“. Jonas Wolf’s guitar playing shines throughout Another Side of You, boasting towering riffs and searing leads as on “Fairytale” and power metal homage “In The Darkness“, artfully combining fretboard pyrotechnics, soulful melodies often surrounding Erni’s vocals and a healthy dose of Blues, making him a truly exciting player in the scene.
While the rhythm section demonstrates some of its most impactful work on modern metal banger “Riptide“, the longing atmosphere created in “TWILY“ takes the listener on a whole other journey with tingling melodies and probably the most catchy riff on the album, bringing in more modern influences to the plate again. A massive surprise awaits in the form of album closer “Verliebt” (Engl. in love). Backed by beautiful piano melodies delivered by Coen Jannsen from Epica, the closing track is sung in Erni’s native Swiss German and, as on all songs, features soulfully penned lyrics by bass player Yannick Urbanczik.
In the end, Another Side of You sees Illumishade embracing their evolution as a band growing in adventurous ways, something that is rare in today’s music scene. There is so much to be discovered here, one might be inclined to start from the beginning once the last chords have bid their farewell… The infectious will to experiment and juggle many sonic flavors and colors while staying true to their fruitful combination of celestial soundscapes and masterful modern metal anthems make Illumishade one of the brightest and most interesting bands in the scene right now. Don’t miss your chance to follow the light of this rising star!
Another Side of You Tracklisting: 1. Enter the Void 2. ELEGY 3. ENEMY 4. In the Darkness 5. Cloudreader 6. Here We Are 7. CYCLONE 8. Fairytale 9. The Horizon Awaits 10. HYMN 11. TWILY 12. Riptide 13. Hummingbird 14. Verliebt (feat. Coen Janssen)
Illumishade are: Fabienne Erni – Voice, Piano / Jonas Wolf – Guitars Mirjam Skal – Orchestration, Synths / Yannick Urbanczik – Bass / Marc Friedrich – Drums