Yet another Italian band to consider at the end of 2013: Bluerose and their second effort, Darkness and Light. They're also another band that straddles or blurs the line between melodic hard rock and heavy metal.
The rock groove is definitely apparent, but it's clearly wrapped up in the heaviness of metal, notably in the riffage, strong drums, and sharp guitar solos. The guitar work of Giuliano Soranno is quite impressive for the simple reason that he doesn't try to get clever. He seems to know that his leads should both contribute to the whole and surprise and thrill the listener's ears when they're brought to the forefront. Exceptional examples of this is found at the end of Leaving You and Darkness and Light. Another Bluerose strength is the voice of Riccardo Scaramelli; he's simply a rock/metal good singer, melodic and clear. Even better, he doesn't fall into the traps of either dirty or screamo vocals which occupy much of modern rock.
But there's nothing really modern about Bluerose. This is basically straight up classic melodic metal with a rock groove, and that's a good thing. Some may be disappointed by the length of the album, eight songs at about 37 minutes, when others are pushing 10 in the 45 minute range. Yet there's much to be said for sleek efficiency. Besides the aforementioned songs, check out both On My Way and The Land of the Light. Recommended.
On the strengths of sharp guitar lines and strong melodic vocals, Bluerose offers some melodic metal with a strong hard rock groove.
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