Fresh out of Montreal, Québec, Canada, we have HOWLING SYN, a trio (quartet in the mean time) that I first discovered some years back on mp3.com and "Forebearers Of Dusk" is their first full album and good they indeed sound.
To describe their music with a few words only is as difficult a task as any, for HOWLING SYN mix various style into a very catchy, melodic and homogenous whole, using elements of Gothic Metal, Melodic Metal and medieval music, combining them with the operatic vocals of Sophie LeMay and the mostly clear, partly also gruff, vocals of mastermind Patryk Pigeon, creating a quite diverse sound that at times can evoke memories of different bands, yet as soon as a name pops up in your mind, the music has shifted again.
The opening title track "Forebearers Of Dusk" comes across completely instrumental and shows quite a bit of the musical variety of the band, while on the rest of the songs Sophie and Patryk form a nice atmosphere, which only adds to the songs. Especially Patryk surprises here with a nice range that at times sounds a bit like Dan Swanö (on the brilliant "Theli" album of THERION), then again has a Fernando Ribeiro (MOONSPELL) touch.
Take songs like the already mentioned "Forebearers Of Dusk", "Years Without Light", "Night Charmers", "Of Pagans And Fairy Tales" (also completely instrumental), "The Reign Of Evil" or "Medieval Years" with one especially inspired vocal performance of Monsieur Pigeon as standout tracks, as you can see, quite a bunch and even though the album has a playing time of more than 1 hour, it doesn't seem like it is, a quite remarkable quality indeed!
So with the general categorisation of Gothic Metal it still is misleading, yet the closest that I could come up with, you'll have to hear for yourself to really find your own description for this band, you can at least partly do so in our mp3 section.
I must say that I've been very positively surprised by "Forebearers Of Dusk", so I would not be surprised to see this CD on a label soon, the potential and quality are more than just there! (Online February 12, 2003)