Rising from Canada Maritimes is Tempting Tragedy with their sophomore effort Descent Into Madness. Tempting Tragedy says they are bucking Canadian metal trends with clean vocal aesthetic and a traditional melodic metal and hard rock foundation, and I would agree. Melodic metal with a touch of gothic overtones, they would say. The latter description may be quizzical to those who equate gothic rock/metal with the symphonic and a female lead vocalist. Some of the symphonic is here, thanks to the keyboards, but not the latter. However, if a deeper, heavier, and dark tone qualifies then, yeah, I guess so. Imagine, maybe Iron Maiden or Fates Warning merging with earl Lacuna Coil, but without the female vocals, and you may have a rudimentary forecast (but you will have to listen for yourself).
Fundamentally, however, Tempting Tragedy is solid melodic heavy metal driven along by a groove-laden rock accessibility, clean passionate vocals, and some fine fiery guitar work from Fernand Brideau. All these elements are supported by well crafted arrangements which easily and effectively draw you in, and keep you listening. I listened to Descent Into Madness while perusing books at a Barnes and Noble and was consistently entertained by every song over the entire work. I don't think there's a single dull or, worse, filler song on Descent Into Madness. Yet, I'll highlight several: All Inside, Calamities, Deep Divide, and Symmetry are prime cuts.
Some may quibble with Marty Surette's predictable vocal style which inhabits every song. However, I would say it adds to Tempting Tragedy's consistent signature sound. Also, I'm ambivalent over the production. At times it feels immensely heavy-handed rather than crisp and to the point, sometimes driving out some components like the keyboards. Then, conversely, it seems to fit TT's overall style.
Regardless of these pseudo-negative observations, Tempting Tragedy's Descent Into Madness is fine work of melodic heavy metal, quickly captivating and quite entertaining. Strongly recommended.
Tempting Tragedy's Descent Into Madness is fine work of melodic heavy metal, quickly captivating and quite entertaining. Strongly recommended.
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