To Cast a Shadow is a Norwegian based four piece band defining their genre as Metal/Punk/Goth/Rock. Amongst their influences they list Satyricon, and being from Norway I naturally also expected some Black Metal thrown into the pot. However, I would describe them more as Epic Doom / Goth with their heavy and low-tuned guitars, strong rhythm section, complimented by clean, angelic vocals.
Apparently the album 'All Alone' was recorded with both the new vocalist, Gunnhild Huser, and the previous vocalist, Camilla Granlien featuring on some of the songs. This is not identified in the bio or clearly noticeable when you listen to the record as they’re both awesome vocalists with stunning and very similar sounding voices. Incidentally, my favourite tracks 'Beast Within' and 'Unjust' are both sang by Gunnhild. The riffs delivered by Marcus Granlien, are catchy and doom driven, complimented by the great drumming from Kent Helset, and strong bass lines from the very talented Stian Dalslaen.
The slow and heavy songs like 'Erzsebet' and 'All Alone' combined the angelic yet slightly chilling vocals of Camilla, creating this fantastic Epic Doom / Goth sound. I can hear the influences of early Black Sabbath, Anathema, Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride.
The title track, 'All Alone', starts a bit heavier and again the heavy guitar riffs are complimented by the beautiful voice of the Camilla. There is a very strong Tool influence in this song, which makes interesting listening with the timing changes and backing vocals.
My favourite tracks are 'Beast Within' and 'Unjust' with Gunnhild’s heavier vocals on the latter, whist she offers an eerie sound on the first.
Songs like 'Suicidal Mind', 'Pretty Dark' and 'Neverending Decay of Love' delve into the dark depression associated with this genre and whilst the music and vocals are beautiful, the lyrics are very dark. This is good, easy listening whilst chilling on a Sunday afternoon; and you are transported through the dark, misty Norwegian forests.
All and all this is a good debut album from a band that, even with a vocalist change, came through and produced a great recording. Hopefully they will now settle with Gunnhild as she has a truly remarkable voice.
'All Alone' is distributed throughout Europe by Indie Dist and Plastichead.