EVERDAWN – Cleopatra (2021)
Following successful tours in support of Queensryche and Therion, the New Jersey band Midnight Eternal went through a line up change while working on their second album. With the addition of Alina Gavrilenko on vocals and Mike LePond (Symphony X, et all) on bass, the band rechristened themselves as EVERDAWN, and the result is their new CD “Cleopatra“.
While press release tells EVERDAWN are a symphonic metal act, musically there’s much more in the background of “Cleopatra”. In fact, for our ears, this album is more melodic metal than anything else, with catchy poppy melodies and strong grooves, wrapped by a big production.
The album is a homage to the most famous and strongest Queen of the Ancient Egypt. However, and while here and there are mentions to her as in, of course, title track “Cleopatra”, it isn’t a concept, with tracks in a ‘song format’ and not only accessible, but also very enjoyable.
One of the characteristics of Sympho are orchestrations / synth layers in that vein. Everdawn and “Cleopatra” are undoubtedly heavier than that with clear guitar riffs and almost no orch. Only “Your Majesty Sadness” has prominent keyboardings (and a cool vocal duet with Therion vocalist Thomas Vikström, by the way).
That makes their music near most melodic metal acts, and whilst Alina Gavrilenko’s is a soprano trained vocalist, she sings straight here, is a rock mode. And her voice is excellent.
Opener “Ghost Shadow Requiem” gives audiences a great summation of the band’s sound as a whole; “Stranded In Bangalore” is a vibrant, catchy, sing-along anthem with a fantastic chorus; the title-track has some intriguing melodies and a palpable sense of drama.
Another strong numbers are the guitar driven “Pariah’s Revenge”, “Lucid Dream”, where the sympho appears, and the rocking “Rider of the Storm” with its chord progressions right on the mark, creating a catchy song with an edge to it plus a killer guitar solo.
Urgent yet very well elaborated songs are the core of “Cleopatra”, a really good debut from EVERDAWN, a band screaming a place into the scene via superb musicianship and strong, effective songs.
01. Ghost Shadow Requiem
02. Stranded In Bangalore
04. Your Majesty Sadness
05. Infinity Divine
06. Pariah’s Revenge
07. Lucid Dream
08. Heart Of A Lion
09. Toledo 712 A.D.
10. Rider Of The Storm
11. The Last Eden
Alina Gavrilenko – Lead Vocals
Richard Fischer – Guitars / Vocals
Mike LePond – Bass
Boris Zaks – Keyboards
Dan Prestup – Drums