Review By Woody
When it comes to Symphonic Metal the Netherlands and Finland in particular seem the best exponents of the genre. So knowing La-Ventura hail from the Netherlands adds an extra sense of anticipation prior to listening to the EP for me. They have a new album scheduled for the not too distant future but the release of this EP keeps the band flowing especially amongst its established fan base.
2.0 is four strong symphonic metal songs with strong gothic tones, very atmospheric interspersed with biting metallic guitar riffs to give it some heaviness. I think fellow Dutch band Within Temptation are a good comparison as there is a lot atmospherics at play here as opposed to brutal bone crushing metal you get with some of the heavier bands within the genre. The songs can be very smooth and melodic especially on the choruses where the band tend to push for an emotive atmosphere rather than an aggressive pounding.
I really took to vocalist Carla Van Huizen’s voice and style immediately she has a really soothing tone which I liked and this also accentuates the lush atmospherics’ giving some of them an ethereal quality. Whilst her voice isn’t operatic like some of the hard-core symphonic bands much like Sharon Den Adel (Within Temptation) she can push her voice in that style but without become pompous and overblown – which allows for a far more commercial sound and songs with wider appeal. Her voice is a real selling point for me and one of the reasons I think femme metal fans will really enjoy the band.
There are little touches of Prog to the song arrangements which is no surprise given that most symphonic bands have strong Prog influences in their music. I also found La-Ventura less bombastic or epic sounding than many similar acts but I think the fact the band are less grandiose benefits them as I feel it gives these songs more power and emotional connection with listeners with them not getting lost in ostentatiousness.
There are some lush melodic soundscapes which got really under my skin and the smooth atmospheric choruses have a real impact making all the songs featured on this EP extremely memorable.
It’s an excellent taster of the band and Femme metal fans should definitely check this out as I’m sure it will please many genre fans immensely! I’ll definitely be keeping my eyes peeled for their next full album.
Track Listing: Carry On / As I Lay Dying / Brave Man / The Great Escape
Album Rating: 9/10
Woody’s Essential Track: The Great Escape
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