The Black Capes
All These Monsters
Release date: June 9, 2017
Emerging from the darkness to release their first sonic assault on an unsuspecting public is The Black Capes. The quintet from Athens, Greece is the brainchild of ex-Potergeist frontman Alex S Wamp, appropriately found a home at Dark Tunes Music Group for their modern take on classic gothic metal. Drawing heavy influence from genre heavies like Type O Negative, fans of The 69 Eyes and Sisters Of Mercy will find these songs right up their dead end alley. All These Monsters is a debut that is poised to put The Black Capes on the map in a big way.
The ten songs on this release range from dark rockers to metal madness, sometimes in the same song. “We Will Never Die” moves effortlessly between a Type O Negative style doom dirge and the more melodic sounds of HIM (think “Buried Alive By Love”). “Now Rise” opens with a subdued riff that hearkens back to the early days of darkwave, turning into a full metal beast when the chorus kicks in. Other songs, like “Sarah The Witch,” live firmly in the metal domain, with heavy riffing backed by ethereal keyboards. These songs draw from a wide range of sounds across the spectrum of dark rock to create a modern take on very vintage vibe.
What the Black Capes does best is create a creepy energy that transfers well to the listener. The album opens with a thunderclap, giving way to dark organ under a horror movie style sample, setting the tone for the eerie scenes painted in these tracks. Wamp’s voice alternates between a Peter Steele (Type O Negative) style baritone and the emotive vocals of Rozz Williams (Christian Death) or Ville Vallo (HIM). Bassist Christ Rusty and drummer Christos Grekas lock together to create a powerful energy that pulses under even the quietest moments, such as the creepy guitar chiming on “Wolf Child.” Guitarists Irene Ketikidi and Thanos Jan create contemplative and threatening soundscapes, giving songs like “Purple Heart” an ebb and flow that builds and releases tension.
While it’s obvious that the Black Capes wear their influences on their collective sleeve, they succeed in creating something wholly new. Fans of gothic rock, particularly of the type with a more heavy metal leaning, will hear the touch of the progenitors of the genre, and of more recent masters of the craft, all while experiencing the unique approach the band has crafted. There is much to like on All These Monsters, from brooding rock to solid metal riffing. More than just a great debut, The Black Capes have created a superb addition to the genre.
Reviewed by Jim 1340