Heavy but light-hearted.

Metal is probably one of the most misunderstood rock genres. Associated with dark themes, metal often gets religious groups all riled up but really, a metal performance is no more “satanic” than a rendition of the Faust opera! Ultimately a metal concert is a show, with dark theatrics thrown in for good measure, with the contributors no more “satanic” than the Faust opera performers.

At the recent album launch of meltgsnow’s Black Penance, diverse metal sub-genres were showcased by Singaporean proponents, Age of Sinfonia (symphonic metal), Fall of Mirra (metalcore), Lunarin (progressive goth metal) and of course, meltgsnow themselves (gothic metal).

Age of Sinfonia opened the launch and impressed with its own take on the symphonic metal genre popularized by the likes of Nightwatch, Epica and Within Temptation. Looking a little cramped on the small SCAPE Lab stage, the sextet did its best to deliver its songs with aplomb and barring the odd timing or pitch issues, by and large succeeded.

Fall of Mirra has obviously benefited from its recent tour of Indonesia as the band was much more tighter than last I remembered. Pummeling its instruments (and microphones) into submission, there was no doubting the energy levels of the band were set on extreme and the audience was swept along by the sonic onslaught.

Lunarin held its own in unfamiliar territory as the born again metallic thrusts of Midas, Red and Serpentine proved as heavy as the music that had gone before and the music that was to come. The intricate weaving of riffs and rhythms was crystal clear notwithstanding the challenging murky stage sound. A fine balance between indie rock and progressive metal.

Headliners meltgsnow did not disappoint. Lord Insanity held court from the off, thrilling the crowd with his vocal gymnastics and pleasing stage manner as exciting material from Black Penance was delivered (e.g. Betrayal, Devil’s Mind Ride, Your Lost Messiah and Love for My Seraph) to the obvious delight of the head-banging audience. The band closed the set with three songs from its debut album and for the duration, the crowd went positively ape shit.

In the final analysis, despite the various technical faults, the bands worked hard to give the crowd what they wanted – pure METAL! Coming from all walks of life the bands (and the crowd) had a shared experience that transcended class and circumstance making for a united front of S-ROCK bands and fans. After all that’s said and done, isn’t that what it’s all about?

Meltgsnow’s second album, Black Penance is out now.


  1. But Kevin, I would draw the line at Black Metal, for some of their exponents have advocated murdering people and burning churches and some have actually done so.

  2. @Ivan, but at the end of the day it’s the music that counts. They can advocated whatever they want, but musicians should keep an open mind and judge the music.

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