Coming from the Tuscany region of Italy, S91 was formed in 2006 as a five piece melodic progressive metal band. There recordings have been sparse over the last ten years with an EP, Sto per tornare in 2009 and a full-length album, Volonta Legata in 2011, both mostly in Italian with Christian lyrics. They arrive with their second long-player, Behold The Mankind, this time, as far as I can tell, with English language lyrics and vocals.
Breaking down the S91 sound is not difficult. The band obviously references classic melodic hard rock and heavy metal for their musical foundation. Some songs can be brisk, like Blind Revolutions for example, turning towards power metal. But mostly S91 likes to mix things up. Their sound and arrangements definitely fall into the progressive genre, yet without being overly technical to be inaccessible. Tempos and signatures can change within songs, but harmony, melody, and groove take a greater place in the music.
There's also some very good interplay between instruments, notably between guitar lines and the keyboards. In some cases, like The Son Of God, the piano carries the melody at the start of the song, before the a bevy of strong riffage comes in. Then the keys take a supporting symphonic role. The song is also a fine example of soaring and slick guitar solos from Francesco Romeggini. On the vocal side, they are mostly handled by Maria Londino who has a pleasant voice: melodic, light at times, soaring as necessary. Yet, she is a bit difficult to understand, so you'll need the lyric booklet (which I did not have).
Nevertheless, and fundamentally, with the guitar lines and solos, perhaps the best thing about S91 is their musical arrangements. They offer creativity and intrigue, enough to keep you interested and wanting to listen through to the end. Additional quick picks: The Bloody Revelation, Wandering Souls, and The Calling. For S91 Behold The Mankind is strong and entertaining album of melodic progressive metal, and definitely worth your time and interest. Recommended.
For S91 Behold The Mankind is strong and entertaining album of melodic progressive metal, and definitely worth your time and interest. Recommended.
Mat Sinner is both an icon and legend in the German, and the larger European, hard rock and heavy metal scene. Cranking out music since 1982, Sinner is an industrious and prolific musician and producer whether through his namesake band, the heavy metal heroes Primal ... [ Read More ]