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Jaded Star - Memories From The Future

Jaded Star – CD Review
Memories From The Future

Jaded Star



CD Info
Sensory Records
10 Tracks
English Lyrics

There have been many upheavals and changes in the female fronted metal scene the past few years with the creation of new metal bands. Such is the case with Jaded Star, a Greek Melodic Metal Band, which is releasing their debut album this month. Even though the band is newly formed, the members of the band have plenty of experience in the Metal Genre with previous bands. Memories From The Future is a unique blend of Melodic Heavy Metal, some Rock, and pleasing female vocals. Emotions are very prominent in some of the songs, especially the one ballad, and the album is full of pleasant instrumental solos.

The band Jaded Star was founded in 2013, with excellent vocalist Maxi Nil (ex-Vision of Atlantis, ex-Elysion) and masterful drummer Raphael Saini (ex-Iced Earth, ex-Vision of Atlantis (Live)). Joining them to complete the band are guitarist Kosta Vreto (Horizon’s End, Wardrum), with his unique finger strumming style and bassist Babis Nikou (Astral DNA, Opened Paradise, Dia Mageias), who helps lay the strong foundation along with the drums. Shortly after forming, they were already on the road touring in Europe. This included a stop at the MetalFemaleVoicesFest in Belgium in 2014, and more recently, a two city tour in Greece supporting the Dutch Metal Band Epica.

This album, which has no covers, features the songwriting team of Maxi and Babis, and was produced by Maxi. In addition, Fredrik Nordstrom mixed and mastered the songs at the legendary Fredman Studios in Sweden, which is famous for groups such as Arch Enemy, At the Gates, In Flames, OPETH, etc. The album’s cover was designed by Lila Belivanaki.

Also, the band has signed with Sensory Records and Maxi expressed the following concerning the signing:

"We can't put down in words how excited and happy we are for signing with Sensory records, since it's very hard to find these days labels who truly help, support and believe in their bands. Memories From The Future is an album full of energy and emotions and personally, it's the best thing I've done so far. We're all very proud of it and we can't wait to share it with the world. Make sure to listen to it as loud as you can!"

Ken Golden, owner of Sensory/The Laser Edge also expressed the following concerning the signing:

“Recently I was approached a new band called JADED STAR. As soon as I learned that Maxi Nil was the band’s vocalist I was immediately intrigued. I was quite familiar with her work with Visions Of Atlantis so I knew this would be quality metal. When I heard the album I was totally blown away.”

The signing is a definite plus for the band and the label.

”The Mask” opens this album and after some synthesized keys, the heavy guitar, bass, and drums kick in with a driving beat. The instruments back off slightly when Maxi enters. Her vocals have a twinge of sorrow in them. There are several parts where she duets with herself. One of the nicer parts is a very short duet between her and the guitar. The emotion of Maxi’s voice shines best when supported by the guitar only. There is a typical metal guitar solo toward the end of the song.

The next song, “Wake Up,” opens similar to the first song, with the synthesizer giving way to the heavy metal sound. However, this song does have a nice choral part that supports Maxi’s voice. The choral parts consist of “Wake up, wake up, wake up.” There are nice, very short, guitar riffs throughout the song that seems to dress up the song slightly. The song takes a slight change during the interlude where there is a drum and synthesizer part before changing the guitars and drums. The song ends with the choral part.

“Keep On Fighting,” opens with the piano playing an ostinato and then joined by the guitar and drums. The piano ostinato continues as a counter to the guitar and drums. At the end of each phrase, there is a short guitar riff that punctuates the end of the phrase. The instruments soften with the vocal entrance and keep a light distorted sound underneath. At the end of the phrase, the instruments strongly punch their part. There is a nicely done guitar solo that leads into the vocals near the end of the song. Underneath the vocals, there is a distorted chord played by the guitar that emphasizes the lyrics.

One song that has a video is “Stars,” which also shows the lyrics. This song is a traditional metal song and almost made my favorite song choice. Besides the driving guitar and drums underneath, this song has the instruments putting a strong emphasis to enhance the vocal line. The guitar solo, while nicely played, to me, didn’t equal the one in “Keep On Fighting.” A link to the video can be found here.

An interesting song on the album is “Healing The Inner Child,” which is a metal song but doesn’t start that way. The drums begin with a very unique beat pattern before being joined with synthesized patterns in a techno way. The guitar joins shortly before the vocals enter with a chorus and then the individual vocalist. The song gives away to a call and response between Maxi and the chorus before returning the original vocals. There is a bit more instrumental flexibility in this song with minor changes in the beat patterns at times throughout the song. Maxi’s voice is very strong in this song and she sustains notes quite well throughout the song. The song ends with a light guitar solo.

The songs “You’ll See” and “Innocence” both open with a synthesized keyboard sound. Maxi voice has a wistful sound to it in “You’ll See,” while “Innocence is more of an anthem. Her voice is much stronger and matches the instruments quite well in both songs. In the first song, the lyrics seems to be giving an “I told you so,” attitude while the second song is more of a strong plea. The underlying beat is more driven in the second song. However, each song features a short guitar solo.

The final song on the album is “Raining In Sao Paulo.” This song is driven from the very beginning. It opens right away with the heavy guitar and drums. Thrown in later are a light keyboard part and then the vocals enter. There is a duet part and the instruments are softer with vocals. The vocals are strong and show some emotion. An interlude is played with the piano taking the melody supported by the guitars and drums. The second verse features some vocal reverb and the melody at times goes into Maxi’s upper vocal range. Also featured is some very nice, superbly done, finger strumming on the guitar, along with drum support. The song ends very strongly with the instruments and vocals competing.

Even though I thoroughly enjoy Melodic Heavy Metal and other Metal Genres very much, I have to say that my favorite song on this album is “In Memory,” which is a Ballad. What makes this song unique and my favorite is that it features guitar and vocals only. It also demonstrates another side of both Maxi and Kosta. Her voice is most vulnerable in this song and the pain is acutely expressed throughout the song. The guitar, while primarily playing arpeggios, superbly supports the vocal line and when it is featured, it is done in a stylish way that enhances the song and does not detract. The vocal chorus at the end also makes the emotional bond stronger. Anyone who has experienced a loss will definitely connect with this song, which makes it my favorite.

Memories From The Future, the debut album from the Greek Melodic Heavy Band, Jaded Star, is pretty good overall. Maxi Nil’s vocals are strong throughout the album and she shows a diverse range vocally and emotionally. The drumming is very good and the guitar has some nice solos, while the bass line is solid. This album should be a definite to the fans of Melodic Metal. The band has already proven that none of the members are new to the metal genre and their experience gives the band a good foundation. My only concern is that many of the songs started out in the same manner. With a more diverse manner of opening the songs, I believe that the overall effect of the album would be enhanced. It will be interesting to see where the band goes from here with their future work. I, for one, look forward to their future work.

For additional information on the band, please check out the following links:

Jaded Star website
Jaded Star on Facebook
Jaded Star on Twitter
Sensory Records