Lacuna Coil Broken Crown Halo 01When a band hits a certain level of fame, usually it gives them free reign to do whatever their innermost muse guides them to create without fear of their label dropping them. They can craft new masterpieces to guide the listener to unknown lands, and hold them there for the duration of the album’s captivating length. They can also lull the unsuspecting fan into a false sense of security before bludgeoning them to a wet, slushy pulp. In other words, no matter what the band does, it’s guaranteed that their label will back them up, as they are proven to sell like virtual gang-busters. If you’re Iron Maiden, you captivate and explore. If you’re Carcass, you bludgeon with surgical precision. If you are Italy’s Lacuna Coil, well, you release the same fucking album over and over and over. Hence, their newest exercise in creative bankruptcy and unabashed worship of all things nu-metal, Broken Crown Halo.

Opening track (and first single), “Nothing Stands in Our Way” sounds vaguely familiar, with its opening programmed synths, bouncy Korn guitars, simple drumming, and good female vocals/bad male vocals… and that would be because, well, they’ve been doing this shit to death since 2002’s superior Comalies, and it’s utilized ad nauseum et infinitum on Broken Crown Halo. There is quite literally nothing new under the roof of this beat-up Lincoln Town Car. Also, the lyrics? “Blood stained/Stock crash/Mistakes/Heart breaks/Nothing stands in our way”? Anyone else ever have their heart broken by a blood-stained stock crash? Jeeeeeeezus, guys.

And it doesn’t get much better, folks. I gave Lethe a bit of grief in a prior review about one song sounding like it could be on the Twilight Official Motion Picture Soundtrack, and yet “Die & Rise,” and its ode to lycanthropy fucking IS Twilight. “Victims” starts to sound promising, a little like a modern-day Paradise Lost, before going to shit thanks to an ill-performed spoken word part by the usually-captivating Cristina Scabbia. “Cybersleep” wins by default as it has very little of male vocalist Andrea Ferro on it.

Lacuna Coil Broken Crown Halo 02So what are the good parts, you may ask? Well, there’s no covers at all on this record. I swear there’s an actual guitar solo in “Zombie.” Not a memorable one, but it’s a start. However, once again, Scabbia’s angelic voice is the star attraction of this band. The big problem is that she’s in the wrong group. If she and the rest of this band would step up as musicians and songwriters, this would be a much better group overall. Instead, I’m picturing what she would sound like if she were to join, say, Shores of Null as a co-vocalist to the vastly-superior-to-Ferro-in-every-conceivable-fashion, Davide Straccione.

Of course, no matter what I say, this will sell like Duck Dynasty memorabilia in the Bible Belt. It has to be said, though… if you lament what this band has become, go back and listen to Comalies and earlier for your LC fix. However, if you’re a die-hard LC completist, think Twilight is edgy, or you really really miss the songcraft of Ben Moody and Amy Lee, then… seriously, what’s wrong with you?!


Rating: 1.0/5.0
Label: Century Media Records
Dynamic Range: DR6
Website:  LacunaCoilOfficial | Facebook.com/LacunaCoil
Release Dates: EU: 2014.03.31 | NA: 04.01. 2014

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  • Piet

    Well, not going to bother with this album then. Trip the Darkness is a decent song imo but apart from that I have never heard a single interesting song by this band.

    • Realkman666

      Songs is not their thing, they’re all about the soundscape, AKA Sharon.

  • André Snyde Lopes

    …and to nobody’s surprise, it sucks.

  • Realkman666

    Metal doesn’t benefit from lyric videos.

    • I agree, but that said, I actually got a couple of friends into Behemoth with the lyrics video from Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer. Go figure.

  • JWG

    I feel like you’ve already reviewed this recently…

    Found it. I stand self-corrected: that was Within Temptation.

    • Grymm

      Whoa, I didn’t review that! LOL

      • No, that was I, your neighborhood Steel.

        • Realkman666

          “Friendly” neighborhood Steel? :$

          • I’m not all that friendly to my neighbors.

          • Realkman666

            More like Deadpool then.

      • JWG

        Correct.

        I should have clarified that’s “you” in the plural/collective/”you guys on this website” sense.

        Anyway. Back to my GWAR playlist…

    • Piet

      Just watch out for the agonist and arch enemy. I have a feeling those are going to be great albums!

      • Joyce Rugg

        I do like the two new songs Arch Enemy has released, and I’m looking forward to the new release, and as long as The Agonist’s album doesn’t sound as hasty as “Disconnect Me”, it will be decent IMO.

    • Mike Eckman

      But does Lacuna Coil have rapping in it?! :)

  • A real shame. I first heard the band when Comalies came out and that was a fantastic album. They’ve not been as good since. I assume pointless shouty bloke is still interrupting the songs?

    With this and the terrible new Within Temptation album (I’m a fan of their earlier work) it’s not been a great month for high profile female fronted metal.

  • Feytalist

    Yeah I haven’t really cared about them since Karmacode.

    But man their first three albums were pretty good…

  • Mike Eckman

    Ugh. I first discovered Lacuna Coil back in the late 90s when Century Media used to release these sampler CDs called “Identity”. I immediately went out and bought the original Lacuna Coil EP and eventually “In a Reverie” when it came out. I loved the bands sound of gothic metal with dualing female and male vocals. Then they became really popular in the US and changed their name to Evanescence, and ever since it’s been a yawn-fest for me. Grymm put it nicely, and Lacuna Coil has been doing the same material over and over again. When I saw this review on AMG, I thought for a brief moment that perhaps they could pull a Paradise Lost and return to their former metal glory, but alas, it was not to be. Im gonna go back to listening to Anciients now.

    • Grymm

      I had to open the doors and windows of our house to air BCH’s stink out after listening to it.

  • JJ

    I am a long time fan of female-fronted metal (I don’t know what it is about the female voice that makes me fall in love with them) but lately I found the newest releases to be mediocre at best. Delain, Within Temptation and Lacuna Coil- I followed their downhill course. I don’t know what I’m gonna do if I don’t find the new Epica album to my liking.