Shades of Humanity is the 4th Studio album from the modern heavy/power metal band SHADOWSIDE and the first to feature new bassist Magnus Rosen (Hammerfall). The band have had previous success in over 30 countries and have opened for some big names including Iron Maiden.
The tracks on this album tackle big subjects from depression, abortion, the Mariana Dam disaster in Brazil and moral values, heavy topics for a heavy power metal album.
From the outset, the album gives a lesson in female fronted power vocals and some serious riffs ripping it up from Raphael Mattos. The bass is solid and at times funky and there is a smoothness to the aggression as the guitars and keys drive the rhythm and melody down into the darkness of the lyrics. Some tracks do stand out more than others, ‘Beast Inside’ and ‘Stream Of Shame’ offer up some gritty guitars and catchy vocal melodies and ‘The Drifter’ has a very haunting melodic vocal from Dani, ‘Insidious Me’ allows you to wallow in the darkness and is the track of the album.
But, and I hate to say there is a but… many of the songs just sounded too similar to the others. The album offers a technically sound performance from all involved, the addition of Rosen is a good one adding a strong rich bass full of funk, groove and rumblings. All of the tracks are well arranged and Dani’s vocal is powerful, expressive and melodically awesome.
I just found many of the tracks to be a little underwhelming. The subject matter being tacked and the excellence of those involved together with a 6 year wait to hear new music had me believing that this would be exceptional and a step up which it isn’t. It is a good album, fans will love it and I did enjoy it mostly but I thought it could have delivered more.
That being said, I hope there is not such a big gap until the next musical offering from them, perhaps now is the time to come together and write more, add some colour and flex more muscle.
Make My Fate
Stream Of Shame
Parade the Sacrifice
Dani Nolden – Vocals
Fabio Buitvidas – Drums
Raphael Mattos – Guitar
Magnus Rosen - Bass