Picture of Edenbridge


Edenbridge - Arcana ©2001 Massacre/Sensory
1. Ascending
2. Starlight Reverie
3. The Palace
4. A Moment Of Time
5. Fly On A Rainbow Dream
6. Color My Sky
7. Velvet Eyes Of Dawn
8. The Whisper Of Ages
9. Into The Light
10. Suspiria
11. Winter Winds
12. Arcana

Power metal has become very similar to 90s pop punk in one major area: the music has been designed to be as easy consumable as possible. Both genres, albeit quite different, are tailored to be digested like fast food, with immediately identifiable ingredients and with as little variance as possible. Thus, you get music that is incredibly easy on the ear and completely undemanding of the listener. In the 90s, bands such as NoFX, Pennywise and Bad Religion spawned a whole generation of soundalike acts who became more and more interchangeable as time went on. Now, in the power metal world, the clones have come out in full force offering a competent, but entirely unoriginal and often dreadfully mediocre in its shameless imitation of the "masters".

Edenbridge must have come about during a board meeting. Their sound, contrived from the success of Nightwish, is so incredibly similar to so many other bands that it would be a tremendous chore for the reviewer to actually bother listing them. Edenbridge has chosen the operatic female lead singer (whose voice is competent but lacking a powerful, distinct edge that keeps her from being anything more than merely competent) approach for power metal and offer exactly zero new ideas or concepts to an already stagnant subgenre of music. Worse yet, what they do offer is without hooks or anything exciting to draw the more discriminating listeners in. I suppose those who must have a pretty power metal album on in the background at all times will like this. However, despite its initial aesthetic shimmer and shine, I get the impression that within a short period of time, Arcana will be forgotten and set aside to collect dust on shelves all around the world. It's not like it is striking enough to be pulled down, dissected and thoroughly enjoyed.

To be fair, the musicians are all highly talented. But as we all know, competency does not equal the ability to come up with music that invigorates the listener. Check that. It does invigorate me enough to violently pull this disc out of my CD player and hurl it at the wall for being so darned generic.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 08/2002

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