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Manora – ‘Brave the Storm’

Independent Release
Epica, Last Days of Eden, Angelwings
Release Date
October 15, 2021
Independent Release
Symphonic Metal

Relative newcomers to the Symphonic Metal scene, Manora has learned from various experiences and their predecessors. The result is the highly ambitious effort, ‘Brave The Storm.’  Each song is epic, sweeping with choral arrangements from on high. Manora will inevitably be compared to other established artists, and that’s okay. The template has been firmly ingrained, and Manora follows it to the letter…maybe a little well. 

Vocals are powerful yet gentle as a breeze wafting through on a summer’s day. I found myself awaiting the harsh vocal intrusion…but it never comes. Who says beauty needs a beast? I must say the lack of gruff vocals is a bit refreshing. Manora delivers high-energy, soaring music that is (almost) perfect). A little too (almost) perfect. A bit too polished, on the whole, but make no mistake; this is album is outstanding throughout.

Standouts include “The Heavens,” a slower tempo track, mostly comprised of keys and strings with Mirte van der Ham’s voice ascending mightily. Honestly, ‘Storm’ could benefit from a few more stripped-down moments like this. An amazing song, destined to stop the show.

The last two tracks, “Sacrifice” and “Beautiful Tragedy,” personify saving the best for last. If these songs give any glimpse into their future, then sign me up for the Manora train. First-class ticket, please.

If this is your first venture in Symphonic Metal, then you will be absolutely hooked. ‘Storm’ is melodic, powerful, and sweepingly beautiful. But, on the assumption you have heard the veteran artists, well…there are probably not a lot of jaw-dropping new moments, but still, I say, we should welcome the new blood, nurture and encourage them. That is what the Metal community is all about, after all.

Indeed, there is a fierce new storm approaching, and its name is Manora.

"there's a fierce new storm approaching and its name is Manora"

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