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Crimson Chrysalis - 'Crimson Passion Cry' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/4e/6f/0f/crimson-chrysalis-crimson-passion-cry-90-1386709699.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     December 10, 2013    
 
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This is a superb album for any mood and any time.

Like many albums I review this one contains arrangements and choirs as well as passionate female vocals and lots of deep guitar despite it having its feet firmly in the Rock spectrum. You will even find some African beats on one song...yes you did read that right. You see, Crimson Chrysalis is a Symphonic Rock band from South Africa that was created by Afrikaans rock/folk singer Rene van de Berg who was encouraged to turn to rock by lyricist Esther Schutte, and 'Crimson Passion Cry' is the end result.

To say an album takes you on a musical journey is a phrase that is often overused in reviewing, but this is one that really does. From the upbeat opener it flows seamlessly from the guitar driven rockers to the sensual ballads. The opener 'Angels & Demons' kicks off with arrangements but quickly breaks out into a Pop Rock duet between Burg and Adolph de Beer that has a truly infectious choral hook. Another interesting entry is the lively 'Fuck Off And Die', which is the funkiest of the up-tempo songs with a modern riff, but it's also the most basic with minimal extras.

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The direct contrast to this is 'Fatal Lie' where CC take their Symphonicity to the max. There is a bounding orchestral intro before the main song starts and the guitars take over leading to the bombastic chorus. Most of the slower numbers are glossy and grand with lots of strings/piano and choir that gives them a soundtrack like feel. This is especially true of 'Deo Volente' and 'Moth Around A Flame' but even when the guitar arrives, and converts a song to a power ballad as happens with the title track, that classical feel remains. Other songs interweave different tempos like 'Letters From The Edge', 'Virgin Death' and 'Dragon's Roar'. In fact there is something interesting in every song whether it's the cracking guitar and strings in 'Solitude' or the African rhythms in 'Blood Diamond'.

I hadn't heard of CC before this and if you haven't either then let me tell you this is a delightful and fabulous album. They are the first act from their country to step into the Symphonic territory and a damn fine fist of it they have made. Not only is it well played, written and produced, but by taking the rock as opposed to metal route they've managed to carve out an unusual sound. In opting for this Symphonic Rock approach, CC has composed an album that has a commercial and accessible feel and one that could strike a chord with a many of Rocktopia's readers. This is a superb album for any mood and any time.

Dave Scott

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