Lacuna Coil return with their new album Black Anima. Their last album, Delirium, saw the Italian alt-metallers evolve with a heavier, darker sound. This release sees Lacuna Coil’s music introduce intense emotions, a sense of the macabre and grand theatrical horror in Black Anima

It’s clear from the onset that this album is pushing the boundaries of Lacuna Coil’s compositional style. Cristina’s haunting vocals in Anima Nero establish the atmosphere for the album. This short intro track has creepy undertones and greatly differs from her usual vocal style. With the evolution of their sound, Cristina and Andrea’s vocals continue to grow. The strength and power behind their voices has really developed over the past couple of releases. Andrea’s harsh vocals have much more power behind them. The sound is fuller and stronger and fits so well with the heavier guitar tones Lacuna Coil have developed over the past few years. The single Layers Of Time is a great example of their vocals. Showing off Andrea’s growls and Cristina’s range as she soars to a high pitch in the chorus. Their track, Veneficium, sees operatic harmonised vocals from Cristina. This gives the track a dramatic, gothic sound. The addition of Andrea’s harsh vocals layered in produces an intense, emotive sound.

Despite the great theatrics, and experimentation with their sound, Lacuna Coil have retained their identity. Their excellent anthemic choruses, a defining feature of their sound, feature in a number of tracks throughout the album. Sword Of Anger, Now Or Never, and Under The Surface all have particularly great choruses with Cristina’s soaring vocals supported by dynamic instrumentation. They also continue to produce tracks with powerful hook lines. Reckless, released as the second single, has a dramatic sound and simple, yet powerful vocal hook. The attention Lacuna Coil have payed to the instrumentation comes across throughout the album. They have revamped the sound of their instrumentation – Delirium saw the beginning of the sound venturing into the heavy tones. The presence of double bass drums, heavier guitar and bass tones, along with a bit of down-tuning,

The dark emotions explored in this album are a step up from their previous album. The tracks on Delirium were focused around mental illness and ideas of madness. This was a great concept and led to some fascinating themes across the tracks. In Black Anima, they explore a range of emotional themes, that will most likely resonate with their audience. Save Me is a dramatic, deeply emotional track. The lyrics feel incredibly personal. The music effectively conveys the message of the vocals. The fast-paced rhythm guitars and percussion gives the verses momentum, whilst the chorus sees the vocals soar creating an epic sound. The spoken word section by Cristina further enhances the meaning behind the song. It feels very intimate, and the supporting strings underneath her words are very atmospheric.

Lacuna Coil are pushing the boundaries with their sound, and music in general. With such a range of styles and influences across the album, they have produced an incredibly powerful record.

9/10

For fans of: Within Temptation, Delain, In This Moment
Words by Holly Royle

‘Black Anima’ by Lacuna Coil is released on 11th October on Century Media Records.

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