REVIEW: Empress AD – ‘Still Life Moving Fast’

Many bands might be a little hesitant and cautious when it comes to releasing a debut album by trying to not go too hard with material and to play it safe. The London-based progressive metal band Empress AD don’t have anything to hide with their debut album Still Life Moving Fast and the record showcases that entirely.

Vocalist Ollie Loring not only screams and yells the lyrics but also switches into clean vocals, many times in the same song. His ability to do this sets the album apart from other bands in the genre. The vocal ability is an element that could possibly be at least thought about, as far as transitioning from clean to screaming lyrics, on a second or third album but Empress AD decided to make it happen on their debut album. The band isn’t afraid to be creative and that’s exactly how it should be when making music.

And as far as creativity goes for this band, their song “Consumed” certainly depicts their artistic values. The seven-minute song starts with a simple, clean guitar riff and vocals. Around the three minute mark it feels like an entirely new song with heavy bass lines and crashing drum beats. Head to the later six minute end of the song and it’s back with clean vocals and guitars. It feels like two completely different songs morphed into a single track and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

The overall rawness and authenticity of instrumentation throughout Still Life Moving Fast add to that level of aggressiveness Empress AD strive to have. This is a record that consists of every element containing power in its own form. From the clean guitar riffs mixed with light vocals to distorted bass power and heavy drum beats, everything feels pure and it seems like this is what Empress AD will be making for a long time to come.