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Elfonia - Elfonia CD (album) cover

ELFONIA

Elfonia

 

Prog Folk

3.71 | 26 ratings

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Tailscent
3 stars Elfonía first came to my attention after the late 2005, early 2006 "Embrace The Storm" tour of STREAM OF PASSION, featuring both Marcela Bovio on vocals and violin, and Alejandro Millán on piano and keyboards. Not long after I sampled their music from their website, I ordered their two albums.

How can they be described? Most seem to have trouble doing so, which is a good sign, in my opinion. It doesn't come near metal, if you ask me. It's atmospheric rock with progressive and sometimes jazzy influences. The "Elfonía" debut album has all vocals in Spanish. I can't speak or understand Spanish at all, but I have to say, it doesn't make it any less enjoyable. Marcela's voice is often compared to Anneke van Giersbergen (THE GATHERING), but I can hear a clear difference between their voices. Oh well.

The album opens with the atmospheric "Eldalindalë", which actually means "Elfonía" in an Elven language. It's a gentle and soft opener, with Marcela's beautiful soothing voice taking the lead. The song roughens up on two occassions, the latter one having a beautiful guitar solo. It ends just as soft as it began...

"Nuestro Descanso" stays soft and calm, only with lots of (acoustic) guitars and again beautiful vocals, supported by some subtle bass. "Aura" remains one of my favorites. It's rockier and slightly jazzier than the openers, and it features a beautiful guitar solo somewhere near the end. The soundscapes made by Alejandro are also a delight for the ears. It's a song with presence, yet it remains soft and gentle at the same time.

"Drama" is another acoustic guitar song, this time with male vocals! I'm unsure who it is, but I'm guessing it is Alejandro. Because of this, it really stands out from the rest of the album. "Dentro" has Marcela on vocals again, and Alejandro back with a catchy piano tune. This is another soft but powerful songs, and easily one of my favorites along with "Aura" and "...de todas mis heridas".

For a song that begins with a gentle bassline, "Modos Humanos" has a lot more in it than you might think at first. This is a very prog-like song, which is very tasteful to me. "Hatshepsut" has a beautiful violin, and is the album's first instrumental track, excluding Marcela's chanting at the end. It completely portrays visions of ancient Egypt, which naturally was the idea. (Hatshepsut was the first known female to become "king" of Egypt).

"Añoranza" reminds me much of "Eldalindalë", but without the singing. Marcela chants and "ooo"'s instead, which sounds beautiful and atmospheric. "La vida que emana..." is a piano intro to the real song, namely "...de todas mis heridas", again one of my favorite songs on the album. It's a very powerful song, with some beautiful violin in the middle. *le sigh* goosebumps!

The album ends powerfully with "Alma Infinita", which is along the same lines of the rest of the album's more rockier songs. A good way to end the album...or not? It turns out there's a hidden track of 1 minute and 38 seconds, in which Marcela sings without instruments, and an echo added. She really has a powerful voice with a great range, though I'm unsure why they chose to end the album like this.

The downsides? For those who thought Marcela was only into metal like STREAM OF PASSION and AYREON, Elfonía might be a bit too soft. Also, I would have preferred the lyrics in English. Those are the only real downsides I have found in my personal experience with the album.

Beautiful, but probably not for everyone. 3 Stars.

Yours, Tailscent

Tailscent | 3/5 |

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