Review: Astrala

Astrala is an interesting album in terms of sound and style. The band have an consistent heavy metal sound with some good chugging mid tempo riffs and thunderous drum beats. There are numerous good guitar hooks through out the album, providing the album with some solid foundations on which they can develop their slightly more complicated sound.

Under their heavy metal riffs and beats, Unshine boast some folk inspired melodies and this influence can be heard through out the record. Admittedly, it isn’t the driving factor of the album and is a little bit more subtle than some of the other motifs on the record. But they are there and when they do surface, it creates a nice contrast to the wall of sound produced by the guitars.

The bands lead vocalist, Susanna Vesilahti might be a dividing factor for some people. I could argue that this kind of music is similar to that of NightwishWithin Temptation and all those other bands. The difference here is in the vocals which are quite ethereal. It is very thin and quite delicate by comparison to Tarja, Floor Jansen or Simone Simons who are known for their humongous classically inspired voices. It creates a unique atmosphere in their sound and certainly sets them apart from the other bands of this style.

I quite enjoyed this record, it has a decent mix of tempos and styles. There are softer melodic moments, heavy doom and a few catchy mid tempo numbers. It is an adequate amount of variety, but not quite enough to avoid a bit of monotony. It does get a bit tiresome after the forty minute mark making me wish the band could trim the record a bit to make it a bit more snappy.

But at the end of the day, this is a very solid enjoyable record that I’m sure a lot of people will enjoy. The sound is big, powerful and has a lot of features that certain bands lack in 2018. If bands with a good female singer with some solid riffs and melody is your thing, by all means check it out.

Rating : 8 / 10

Where to buy :

Track Listing :

  1. Birch of Fornjot
  2. Kainun Kuningas
  3. Jack's Feast
  4. The Masks of Enchantment
  5. Pan the One
  6. Druids are A-coming
  7. Slow Moving Creatures
  8. Visionary's Last Breath
  9. Suo (Kantaa Ruumiit)
  10. The Forest