Savn - Savn

Savn - Savn

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(CD, CDR Records / Intergroove, 2014)

There are albums that have a specific expiration date so you can only listen them for a short period of time before storing them, and then there are those which can withstand the test of time bearing a ‘all-time classic’ quality. Norwegian Gothic / Folk metallers SAVN’s self-titled debut effort belongs to the second category and it was a really pleasant surprise considering that nowadays (almost?) everything has been said, written and played by female-fronted Metal bands that have saturated this scene with tons of releases claiming to be ‘one more note of fresh air’. What captured my interest to deal with “Savn” was the band’s to-die-for lineup with MIDNATTSOL’s vocalist Carmen Elise Espenaes and THE SINS OF THY BELOVED members Stig Johansen and Anders Thue. Quite interesting, don’t ya agree?

SAVN took me back in the mid 90s when albums like THEATRE OF TRAGEDY’s “Velvet Darkness They Fear” and SEPTIC FLESH’s “Ophidian Wheel” were offering a unique blend of ethereal female vocals with aggressive yet melancholic ones that magnetized the attention towards the Gothic Metal genre, even if many metalheads consider the term ‘Gothic’ as a turn-off. In case you’re wondering, let me tell you right from the start that Mrs. Espenaes has the vocals to serve the Gothic Metal scene, no questions asked. So, Carmen teamed up with the very talented Johansen and Thue and created the eleven tracks of “Savn” produced by ATROCITY’s Alexander Krull, delivering the beloved ‘beauty and the beast’ vocals, the atmospheric keyboard tunes and some cello/violin-laden colorful melodies (ok, the last two tracks are bonus ones as the growling versions of “Hang On” and “The Demons In Me”) that will satisfy your hunger for new THEATRE OF TRAGEDY music that, as we all know, will never happen.

“Musical Silence” kicks in with a Folk-ish character that takes you to full-green landscapes and misty forests, showcasing that SAVN is more than just mellow emotions, tear-soaked stories and Gothic melancholy. Take for example the LEAVES’ EYES-esque “Hang On” or the following “The Demons In Me” that I think are two completely different tracks structure-wise, even though both of them have distinct Symphonic Metal foundations. The former is an almost Pop, keyboards-based song and the latter is filled with Folk-oriented melodies being topped off by the guest singing of END OF GREEN’s Michelle Darkness. During the first listening of “Savn”, I picked “Sorrowful” for its catchy melody, “I Am Free”, the duet of the Espinaes sisters (yes, I’m talking about my beloved Liv Kristine) who here are offering a true seminar of how female singers should handle their voices in a respectful atmospheric Gothic Metal album, and “Now Or Never” that really woke up some early TRISTANIA memories with its dark, male-growling character.

This album is a very promising first step for the future of SAVN and I strongly believe that if they continue working their sound towards the so-missed THEATRE OF TRAGEDY direction, then they will only find rose petals and stardust on their path.





01. Musical Silence
02. Hang On
03. The Demons In Me
04. Longing For Love
05. I Am Free
06. Sorrowful
07. All I Want
08. Now Or Never
09. Lengselens Hand
10. Hang On (growling version, bonus)
11. The Demons In Me (growling version, bonus)


Carmen Elise Espenæs - Vocals
Stig Johansen - Vocals, Guitars
Anders Thue - Keyboards