Arven – Black is the Colour (2013) – Review

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Hahaaa! Rock’n’Roll!! Hand and fingers in the air! The newest album Black is the Colour of the German band Arven takes off furiously fast. Nothing of the subdued style left anymore that somehow plagued their debut album Music of Light.

Bang goes the metal riff, once you start listening, so fast that Carina’s voice somewhat struggles to follow for the first instances. Holy. Metal. Cow.

Everything is rockier, more straightforward – indeed a much more self-confident approach to the music than before. But also darker – a shift towards the Gothic Metal genre, one might say. They have really managed to get to a next level, still maintaining their unique style, but now there is spice and fire in the tune. Black is the Colour is a delight to listen to.

Another remarkable change: The lead singer Carina Hanselmann is doing the interpretation differently, with a much better, straight style, much more conscious singing with focus on every single word, but still maintaining her own, fairy self.

Black is the Colour is alternating with hard, metal style songs with great riffs and soft ballads. Starting off with Believe, very fast and beautifully engineered. The official video on YouTube is worth checking out, by the way. This is followed by Don’t Look Back, kind of a little less speedy. 

Tracks 4, 5 and 6 kind of go together. Starting with The One for Me, is pretty good in itself, were it not for the guest singer Stefan Schmidt of Van Canto. A waste of investment in my book. This is followed by All I Got, a nice, soft ballad. Everything is cool and dandy in love life, or so it seems. 

But no, My Darkest Dream says otherwise. Someone broke somebody’s heart – it appears – to the point that they wish some punishment on this poor (?) guy. The quiet evil and thirst for revenge in this song is alluring to me. Also, the way they support the song with keyboards in a very Goth way to make a point, followed by a pretty sturdy metal solo. One of my favourites.

The album is rounded up by the two folk bonus tracks – Ride On and Black is the Colour, both nicely executed. Not surprisingly, the record made it onto the RockmusicRaider Tome I edition. 

Black is the Colour is the archetype of ‘kicking it up a notch’. Arven have managed to increase oomph and quality, whilst maintaining their very own brand. I am totally amazed. Well, Ladies and Till, very well done. I like the progression, cool album.

Ed’s note: Arven officially disbanded in 2015. This band had great, great promise and it is truly sad that things went the way they did. Let’s hope that they will re-emerge one day in some way or form, unlikely as this may be.

Record Rating: 10/10 | Label: Massacre Records | Web: –
Release date: 23 August 2013

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