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Titel / Title Black Waltz 
Label Gain / Sony Music 
Web www.avatar.net
Total run time

The latest album by the Swedish band Avatar was already released in Scandinavia and the US in spring and managed to get really good feedback especially in the US, where their single Let it burn was on heavy rotation.

Now, the album is also available in Europe – and at least for me it really made an impact. Black Waltz is much stronger than their previous album “Avatar” (2009) and offers an experimental sound and a really interesting mix of different musical genres, whilst the band still stays faithful to their very own sound. And exactly this is what makes the album so special: the unmistakable sound of the music, the dark and rocking style of the songs and the very strong and ever-changing vocals.

The vocals are striking and punchy and therefore really appealing and fascinating, since the band manages, again and again, to build an arc of suspense and also to create a very special atmosphere through their combination of music and the just mentioned vocals. Also, the partially used background vocals fit perfectly into the overall picture. Seamlessly, the guitar sound flows into the songs and so do the instrumental passages which loosen up the otherwise really tight song structures (e.g. Use your tongue). The dynamic sound, created by the musical and vocal elements, manages to keep the listener captivated, again and again – it surely is no CD for one play only, once the CD made it into the player.

Overall, Black Waltz is an album that easily exceeded all of my expectations – an album that is fully pulling you along with the music and simply leaves a lasting impression thanks to its unique sound. Strong vocals, a sound to remember – a masterpiece that invites you to listen actively, everything else would be a waste of time!

Carina Ullmann

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