Devlin
Grand Death Opening

Apparently Siegebürgen’s frontman, Marcus Ehlin felt that he couldn’t express all of his emotions with his main band and thus created Devlin to serve these feelings. In the process, Lexi was hired to deal with the lead vocal duties. Musically, the project isn’t the most original thing since sliced bread; female vocals that are sometimes accompanied by male growling in a light gothic metal setting. And despite taking some small elements from other genres of metal, there aren’t any surprises at all. With emotions of love, the music becomes lighter, almost pop-rock like and when things need to be underlined, it becomes heavier. You know the drill. In the background, there is a (sometimes) heavy use of keyboards and orchestral bits but instead of making the sound deeper, it feels like a cliche after a cliche is rolled out. When everything goes strictly by the book (so to speak), I just couldn’t help to think how left handed the whole package felt. There were some nice guitar riffs and special moments thrown in every now and then, but they cannot hide the fact that the arrangements are uninspiring and empty. Even the cover of Billy Idol’s “White Wedding” sounds tired. However, I’m probably making this sound a lot more worse than it is in reality. It is just that the “been there done that” factor is reaching for great heights and there are little or no elements to relate to. So that kind of waters it all down. Some further development of songs and ideas and of course, hard self-criticism could have probably lead to better results. I’m sure Ehlin and Lexi can do a lot better than this when they want to. Most likely extreme fans of the Beauty and the Beast-concept will get something out of Devlin but for the rest of us it’s just another compact disc of nice background music. In “Queen of Razors” when the band asks the listener, “Can you live without me? Can you sleep without me? Can you die without me?” it’s easy to reply, “Why yes I can. Thanks for asking and don’t forget your coat”.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Mikko K.
May 10th, 2003

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