Canadian Symphonic Metal artist Leah has been creating a new brand of Symphonic Metal with Celtic and World Influences. International fans have referred to her as the “Metal Enya” for her heavy but enchanting style. Leah mixes Heavy Metal with soft and subdued sounds, both uplifting and transcending emotions strewn throughout the music. It is slightly dark but beautiful. Leah’s music really surprised me the first time I heard it, as I am a huge Symphonic Metal fan. Leah is so different from other Symphonic Metal bands, yet some of the melodies remind fondy of Leaves’ Eyes Celtic sound. It is modern, yet very old much like Celtic and Scottish songs. The feel of her music is so different from other bands, and that’s what makes the new album “Kings & Queens” so great.
“Kings & Queens” has a lot to offer musically and influentially. The subdued but heavy guitars are done by Timo Somers (Quest/Delain) and the dynamic drums are done by Sander Zoer (Studio Delain work). The use of piano, synths, and many other instruments is what makes the album other wordly. The album through instrumentation can transcend you to another land, a land existing much before technology. It can take you to the highlands of England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland and take you back to the Medieval times. The music is like an old soundtrack that you would associate with movies like Lord of the Rings or maybe even Game of Thrones. Yet, the album is unique and beyond something of a novelty.
Leah’s vocals are subdued, beautiful, moving, and mesmerising on “Kings and Queens”. Every song has a similar slow and soft melody, but each track remains different from the rest. Songs like opening track Arcadia, has chanting choir vocals underneath heavy grinding instrumentation, but then soft and lovely vocals. The mix is interesting and very pleasing to this Symphonic Metal fan’s ears. Save the World has this Old World Italy feel to it, reminding me of the other Lacuna Coil tracks like Heaven’s A Lie. Angel Fell is incredibly enchanting with this organ chiming throughout, no doubt classically inspired. The quality of this track is spectacular, good enough for several back to back replays. Enter the Highlands is the highlight Celtic track of the album and is one of the heaviest jams on the album. Some may desire the add of growls on a track like this, but I believe the guitars add enough heaviness.
The use of percussion is excellent throughout the album, making it a World themed album as it explores different cultures and Folk themes. Songs like In the Palm of Your Hands has that Folk feel, but also a Gothic theme. The guitar work on this track by Timo is excellent as well. Other tracks I enjoyed vastly on this album are Alpha Et Omega, Heart of Poison, and Siull a Run just to mention a few more highlights without spoiling the greatness of this album.
The diversity, quality, and catchiness of “Kings and Queens” is highly impressive. I could not have predicted such an incredible album from an artist I only discovered months ago. It reminds me of Evanescence’s very first album, “Origins” done with David Hodges, meaning I automatically fell in love with “Kings and Queens”. The Gothic, Prog, Folk, Symphonic, and Celtic themes are so exquisitely intertwined throughout each track, meaning it is impossible to get bored of this album. I cannot describe much more about the album. It is an album you just have to listen to all the way through and decide for yourself. I do highly recommend this for all Symphonic Metal and Celtic music lovers.
Overall Album Rating 9/10