I've been re-listening a bit to 'Shallow Life' from 2009 since I received this new album from Italy's Lacuna Coil. I can only reconfirm what I noted in my review back then; 'Shallow Life' was a very nice and very boring album.
My high hopes for this new album were of course that it'd be an entirely
different matter with Cristina and the boys showing a lot more teeth.
Lo and behold! 'Dark Adrenaline' is in fact a so much more potent effort than 'Shallow
Life'! Cristina is from the outset pressing herself a bit more than usual,
reaching higher notes than usual and putting more feeling into it. The balance between Cristina and Andrea's
vocal is just perfect. There is overall more punch in the guitar work than we've
heard before from the Italians and it suits them very, very well.
Compared to 'Shallow Life', this sounds like a band that challenges itself to
power up without letting go of the gentle and subtle side of themselves (read:
there's still the pop-laden, electronically enhanced tunes in there).
The songs of the album suit each other excellently, even if the fine REM cover
Losing My Religion and My Spirit (sounds like a Type O Negative tribute song)
stand out a bit from the rest. The production and mix of the album is impeccable,
although this has usually been the case with Lacuna Coil's albums.
'Dark Adrenaline' is Lacuna Coil firing on all cylinders with a shitload of
self-confidence and feeling, bringing together pop and metal, nu and traditional,
male and female, crunch and synth, and it shows why the sextet is a force to be
reckoned with in metal anno 2012.