Nebelhexe – Essensual

Nebelhexe – Essensual / 2007 Candlelight / 10 Tracks / http://www.nebelhexe.com / http://www.candlelightrecords.co.uk /

Nebelhexe may better be known as Andrea Haugen, who has been around goth and metal-like rock music for well over a decade. The disc itself starts with “Underworld”, a song that has Haugen sing in a very Stevie Nicks meets Switchblade Symphony style. The instrumentation has an Enya/Enigma sound to it, which means there are tribal drums mixed in with a more ambient instrumentation. “Invisible Entity” follows “Underworld”, and comes forth like a shambling, confused creature. There are guitars present that would sound perfect on Marilyn Manson’s “Antichrist Superstar” album, but the tribal sound comes forth again.

Throw in a little bit of a dance influence to the arrangements on the track and what has is something that cannot be properly defined, but is catchy nonetheless. Haugen is eclectic, and the tracks on “Essensual” show that. “Their Dead Poetry” is perhaps the most “normal” of the tracks on “Essensual”. The vocals move back to a typical “goth” sound, while the guitars stand in the background, providing more distortion than direction to the track. The track seems to feel as if Haugen is going through the motions, a Gothic Madonna rather than actually providing individuals with an intensity or depravity that would really set the track apart from all of the others. “Sungod” picks up business considerably, but it is the instrumentation rather than the vocals that really make the track shine. There is spontaneity to the instrumentation that is present despite the overall neatness of the arrangements.

Throw in a funky guitar playing off of a set of classical strings and the track is given that little tweak that is necessary to turn heads and get individuals interested again in “Essensual”.  The call and response style of Haugen’s vocals during the second half of the track need to be given a little bit of the credit here, as they provide a bounciness that works well with the cyclical nature of the instruments during this track. The entirety of “Essensual” is softly stated, and yet even taking that into consideration, the disc itself does not feel as it achieves its’ full potential throughout its’ 10 cuts. Haugen is capable of a lot more, and maybe it will be the case for the next album that ey releases that ey can show listeners something special. However, this album is ultimately  one that individuals can pass on, due to the lack of impressive and solid tracks throughout its’ 40-plus minute runtime.

Top Tracks: Invisible Entity, The Wish

Rating: 2.9/10

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University.

I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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