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 Secret Rule - Transposed Emotions (2015) Album Review

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Secret Rule - Transposed Emotions (2015)
Rocksector Records
Running Time - 54:07


Secret Rule are a four piece band from Rome in Italy and were only formed at the beginning of 2014. To be signed by Rocksector Records and get your debut album out in that space of time is an achievement but I suspect it has helped that guitarist Andy Menario is also a member of another Rocksector band Martiria!

Secret Rule play a heady mix of Gothic & Industrial Metal mixed with Progressive Rock & Pop and 'Transposed Emotions' is catchy and well played. They also have a female vocalist, Angela Di Vincenzo (more on her a bit later). Put all of those things together and it's almost inevitable that comparisons to Lacuna Coil will be made by many! I though, have never understood the huge fascination and praise heaped on Cristina Scabbia and Co and to these ears they are average at best. Thankfully Secret Rule grab my attention more!

Much of that has to do with the quality of Menario's guitar work, especially the riffs, they are heavy, clean and full of hooks. His acoustic work is also clear and beautifully played. Keyboards and Synths are used excellently to great effect. Having them come to the fore at just the right moment and used to accent just certain parts of the songs makes their inclusion even more bombastic and certainly works much better than if they were layered over absolutely everything! Michele Raspanti' on bass and drummer Ruben Ramirez (when electronic samples aren't being used) also add a very credible rhythm section to proceedings without it being hugely complicated.

New single and video clip 'I Don't Wanna Be' is a definite highlight. It's weird how music presents individuals with a mental image and for some totally random and inexplicable reason, every time I hear this song, I see Mike Myers doing a huge Austin Powers dance routine around the streets of Rome, the main riff just demands that quirky and energetic jumpiness! I now suspect a few of you are thinking I've completely lost the plot and you could be right...but this is why I love music so much, you never know what's going to happen when you listen to it!

Now I did say I would get back to the vocals of Angela Di Vincenzo. There is no doubt that she has a very good voice so I'm certainly not questioning her ability, but I've heard quite a few really excellent female singers lately and I do worry that her delivery is perhaps a little poppy and clean for the chunkiness of the riffs, heavy bass and double kick drumming. There are times when I want her to really attack the song and hear some grit in her voice and even though her tuning is spot on that doesn't happen! Nina Osegueda of Washington DC Heavy Metal band A Sound Of Thunder is the person that immediately comes to mind when I think of a vocalist who could truly make these songs stand head and shoulders above the many other bands of this genre and she can also cover ballads with ease as well! On the plus side, during the quieter tracks, Angela's natural vibrato is lovely and reminds me of a clean singing Doro Pesch, which is no bad comparison.

Secret Rule have delivered a fine debut that should impress fans of various genres and Rocksector have, once again, signed a band of quality to add to their roster. However, that one vocal issue is holding me back. It has to be said that many bands that have only been around for this short amount of time have barely played any gigs, let alone thought about recording an EP or album so perhaps more time will make Secret Rule gel even further. Until then I'm reserving judgement because there is a possibility that they could fall into the trap of sounding like too many other European bands with female vocalists

Secret Rule - Transposed Emotions (2015) Album Review Promo_24

Review written exclusively for Brutiful Entertainment by Rick Tilley:

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