Album: "Shades" (2001)
Label: n/a
Style: Darkwave
Songs: 13


Reviewed by: Darklight

I rather enjoyed Scary Valentine’s debut release as it combined electro-industrial energy with goth atmospheres and emotional female singing. And while this follow-up sticks to a similar formula, it just isn’t as compelling as a recording in my opinion.

Their first effort included quite a lot of energetic club tracks. However, this album tends to sound a bit more experimental in its sound with noisy crunchy electronic programming and rather drab rhythms and beats. Basically, the music in the songs seems rather sparse and empty relying on the vocals of Shari Valenta (and occasionally Scot Gordon) to carry the songs along.

The music throughout this CD reminds me of the music found on Covenant’s ’Europa’ and ’Sequencer’ albums. But it’s lacking the same edge that Covenant delivered on those albums. Also, while Shari Valenta has a decent enough voice and sings rather well, her vocals do end up sounding the same on every track and do come off a bit dreary. The songs are a little more interesting when Scot Gordon provides his vocals as well. And one of the best songs on this album “Strange Bond” features only the vocals of Scot Gordon. This particular song is more structured and energetic with grabbing hooks and beats that really pulled me in. It’s too bad more songs on the album couldn’t have followed a similar formula. But the majority of the album is more mellow experimental darkwave featuring the dry vocals of Shari Valenta.

I really wanted to like this album and listened to it several times in hopes that it would grow on me. Unfortunately, it never did. While there are a handful of good songs to be found here, the album as a whole sounds pretty much the same from beginning to end.

This CD will appeal to those who enjoy rather dreary experimental industrial music combined with goth melodies and female vocals. I personally would like to see this band go in more of an energetic dark EBM direction featuring a bigger contrast between male and female vocals similar to that of The Azoic, The Dust Of Basement, Flesh Field and L’ame Immortelle. They definitely have the potential, now all they have to do is use it.


Album: "Gorgon" (1999)
Label: n/a
Style: Electro-goth
Songs: 10


Reviewed by: Darklight

This band definitely knows how to combine industrial and goth music together and make it work. The overall mood is dark, but does include some excellent layered electronic programming effects with a sci-fi edge. There are noise effects and hard drum beats as well. The beautifully clean singing is performed by Shari Valenta. She combines her vocals with the music perfectly. The songs offer a lot of variety with a combination of electronic sounds and noises blended together to make for music that twists and turns like a slithering serpent. Some of the tracks are energetic enough to work out on the dance floor, while others are a bit more melodic. The music and singing does get a bit too dreary at times where it becomes somewhat boring such as on the track "The Monster". However, this doesn't happen too often here. The music does remain rather beat heavy for most of the album. Also, the songs do a pretty good job of all sounding different from each other. This CD is highly recommended to those who like electronic goth music with female vocals.