(Lion Music) Enslain Magazine Volume 2, Issue 1 From Holland comes Delphian's debut label release "Oracle." This female-fronted act is not your typical goth-hybrid metal band, which is refreshing. Instead, it has the feel of just plain metal, with a very disguised progressive attitude. The heavy and melodic guitarwork, with a few solos, creative leads, and occassional prog-like rhythm sections, is about the most unlikely candidate for cooperation with female vocals. At times, the singing does seem a little mismatched with the music, also sounding somewhat distant from the tightly arranged instrumentation. However, with enough listens, you just can't imagine anyone else at the forefront of this project.
Aniek's vocals remind me a little of Agnete of Madder Mortem, with the slightest hint of Anneke from The Gathering, especially in terms of accentuation. These aren't sing-along vocals, though, in that they don't usually form memorable verses or choruses; they are more free-flowing and unpredictable. Her semi-operatic style stays within the alto range, rarely going into falsetto.
Having released their first demo in 2004, Delphian is still a very new project, and this is evident in their sound. Though sounding capable, and having all the elements necessary for a strong album, the songwriting is still just average. Still, there are a few highlights on this record, including the memorable "My Confession", and the few songs where Aniek integrates majestic and delicate flutes. Overall, this is a unique listening experience, recommended for those who can handle music without "hooks".