Shining - Animal (2018)


After captivating audiences with their insane ‘Blackjazz’ style (and release), the band continues to push their own musical horizons with a Hard Rocking release titled “Animal”. Always evolving in styles, the band now pursues a more ‘normal’ sound that keep their catchiness but tunes down the madness while delivering an in-your-face attitude. Don’t get us wrong, this release is awesome, but in its own different context.

Opening with “Take Me”, the band’s use of synths made us believe they decided to go the Ulver route and play some synth pop, but instead they kept this heavier and sound like Pain and similar Industrial/Electronic Metal bands. While it can take a bit to adjust, the album title track provides the perfect transition into their Hard Rock style with catchy guitar sections and the highly recognizable vocal melodies of Jørgen Munkeby.

Exploring different elements and styles, tracks like “My Church” starts with a more atmospheric vibe and morphs into an all out head banging fest with insanely catchy passages and dramatic vocal arrangements. As tracks like “My Church”, “Smash it Up!”, and “Fight Song” arrive, we find ourselves liking this new style more and more, as some moments remind us of bands like Amaranthe. Which is quite engaging and high-octane, so definitely a good comparison.

The band’s musical core has not changed much, keeping their raw attitude and style intact, but it is quite interesting to hear them rely on other elements to deliver memorable and hard to forget songs like “Everything Dies” and the melodramatic “End”. Closing with the ballad duet “Hole in the Sky”, alongside Linnea Dale, we get to hear a more emotional and different side of Jørgen Munkeby.

If you are expecting another Blackjazz styled release, then definitely this will not be your cup of tea. However, if you like the band’s core sound and insane energy, then “Animal” will certainly be of amusement and entertainment for you. The band manages to shift their musical style once more in pursuit of more interesting and different avenues of expressing themselves, and we totally dig it.

Bands: Shining Album: Animal

Label: Spinefarm Records

Release: October 19th, 2018

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Genre: Hard Rock/Metal

Country: Norway

Rating: 90/100

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