What a beautiful album! Epic songs, angelic vocals, and truly magnificent lead guitar and violin performances. CHALICE is from Adelaide, Australia, and they play melodic, heavy, and classically-influenced music. Not fully Metal, but not really Hard Rock. More like a mix of the two, plus a touch of Doom and even Gothic on the side.
This debut album was originally released in 1998, but re-released in 2000 (sadly, with one less song), and spans 47 minutes on 7 songs. Most of you are probably more familiar with such female-fronted bands as TRISTANIA, LACUNA COIL, THEATRE OF TRAGEDY, NIGHTWISH, and THE 3rd & THE MORTAL. Well, they are only the carpet that CHALICE treads upon, they are like gum on CHALICE's boots, they are duct tape on CHALICE's stage floor - you get my point.
First of all, the previously mentioned bands have female members that do nothing more than just sing and write lyrics. CHALICE, on the other hand, credits its songwriting to their multi-talented female singer/keyboardist. Secondly, those bands do not have an awesome lead guitarist. CHALICE does. Every song except the fifth has a memorable guitar solo. It's so melodic and sweet that you'll get tooth decay. The only thing keeping this album from being perfect is the second song, "Requiescat." I don't know what it is with this song, but I start yawning once it starts.
Other than that, "Chronicles Of Dysphoria" is absolutely amazing. More to come from this Australian export. I guarantee it. (Online October 28, 2002)