Era Vulgaris
What Stirs Within
Style: Progressive Metal/Thrash
Release date: July 7th 2007

It is not everyday you stumble over a metal act from Ireland, actually only Steel Tormentor comes to mind when I think of others. 'What Stirs Within' is the debut album from Era Vulgaris and it was officially released in Ireland early February 2007, and now they are ready to unleash this monster onto the rest of Europe.

But sadly the monster turns out to ugly and not much fun to listen to, which mostly has to do with 2 things; the sound on the album does not live up to the expectations one should have for an official release. The guitar sound is thin, the snare-drum sounds awful and the vocals sound bad. Going back to the vocals, which is my second and biggest objective towards this debut album; they are simply horrible and is what really holds this album back the most.

Chris Rob's guttural screams might be somewhat fitting for this kind of music and his clean voice is OK, but generally I do not like them. The music could be tighter, some of the breaks are sloppy and a bit off. Their style is a doomish combination of progressive metal and 90's American thrash metal where bands like Pantera, Megadeth and Down comes to mind. The aggressive vocals draws parallels with Death and Control Denied, without ever reaching the same standard.

Mostly I enjoy reviewing new and unfamiliar stuff, but now and then I do get an album like this one, where the intentions and ambitions clearly are there, but the result simply doesn't live up to that. Get back in the rehearsing room, work on the finer details and get a new vocalist is my suggestion if I might hand out some kind of advice for them.

I am not impressed with this album that sounds like a band, which in my book only compares to many bands in their demo-stages... I for one hope they'll take the time and energy to gain some experience, play their asses off live, and write stronger songs before they'll even consider entering the studios again... because the last song - the 11 minutes plus instrumental "Imram" shows what kind potential this band holds.

Label: Open Your Ears Music
Provided by: Lugga Music
Distribution: Open Your Ears Music
Reviewed by: Kenn Jensen
Date: June 5th 2007