FOREVER STILL – Tied Down
FOREVER STILL Line Up:
Maja Shining | vocals
Mikkel Haastrup | all instruments
Maja Partsch | live guitar
Signing with Nuclear Blast Records, the world’s largest metal label, has got to be a bit of a coup for Danish trio Forever Still. With the Copenhagen natives about to drop their debut album, the label will no doubt be expecting big things from this young band. If this album is any indication big things are not just near. Big things are here.
Unfortunately, when female front metal bands, comparisons are made. In the 21st century, it’d be nice to think the genre has grown up enough to accept women singers without being written off as just a novelty act – or another Lacuna Coil or Evanesence. But those comparisons have already – and unfairly – been made. Sure, they’re European and yes, they feature opera combined with death growl vocals, but the comparisons should end there. Forever Still are much more than that. For a start, they’re not only fronted by a girl, one also plays guitar. From opening track ‘Scars’ it’s clear Maja Shining is not there for her looks. By God, she can sing! With a range to rival the best she entices with a sweet lilting voice before she lets rip with a guttural scream that hits like a slap in the face. No need for a male to add the brutal vocals, Shining has that covered.
Using the technique sparingly (yet effectively) had me wanting to hear more growl. You have to wait until the fifth track ‘Breathe In’ before the brutal growl is heard again, but it’s worth the wait. In the meantime, Maja Partsch proves she can wield an axe with the best, and her melodic shredding stands out on an album of so many highlights.
Vocally and lyrically, the album is dripping with raw emotion rarely found in a debut. The writing team of Maja Shining and multi-instrumentalist Mikkel Haastrup have delivered complexity, with the band not afraid to stray from the heavy metal norm of guitar, bass and drums. Indeed, Haastrup is keen to show his diversity, literally playing every other instrument on the album. Playing one instrument well is hard enough but the Danish genius tackles strings, piano and synth effortlessly. Intertwined with Partsch’s shredding guitar and Shining’s exceptional vocal range, you have all the ingredients for a band destined to conquer the world.
I’m giving Tied Down 8 ½ howling banshees out of 10
Tied Down track listing:
2. Once Upon A Nightmare
3. Miss Madness
4. Awake The Fire
5. Breathe In
6. Save Me
7. Your Light
9. Break The Glass
10. Tied Down
Grab the bonus free download of The Last Day below:
And check out Forever Still on You Tube: