Manora – Brave The Storm

Brave The Storm
October 15th, 2021
Playing time: 01:00:23

The Netherlands are a cornucopia of Symphonic Metal bands. I only say Within Temptation, Epica as well as the no longer existing Delain, After Forever or Stream of Passion. And many more. You get to know new ones all the time. Manora were founded a few years ago. It was not possible to find out exactly when. In their super-short bio, they talk about line-up changes in 2016. Anyway. One year later, the first EP “Dreamshapes” was released. Apparently, the time during the COVID-19 pandemic was used for song writing and studio recordings. Then, in mid-October, the debut album “Brave The Storm” was released, distributed under their own responsibility. The basis for this was a crowdfunding campaign, which raised almost 80% of the target amount.

Melodic uptempo songs. In addition, bombastic choruses and orchestral keyboards, paired with some heavier (Metal-) riffs. That is the formula on “Brave The Storm”. You can already hear that on the opener “System Shutdown”. After about a one-minute intro. Mirte van der Ham’s singing sounds pleasant, although it is in the soprano range without extreme shrill high pitches. This continues with “The Traveler”. Bombastic intro, but then a little faster. The double bass is the main driving force here. So far there have already been some pleasing guitar passages. The short guitar intermezzo in the midtempo hymn “Break Your Fall” can be described as very successful, melodic but still filigree. With “Wired To Obey”, the listener looks up in surprise, as the song starts with Industrial elements. But then the Melodic Rock comes through again. The short quiet vocal passages provide a little variety. And the same pattern is continued in the following songs, whether “Pull The Strings”, “Another Destiny” or “Dreamshapes”.In between, the piano/strings ballad “The Heavens” sets a pleasant point of rest.  Close your eyes and dream. Another highlight is “Symphony Of Lies”, a multi-layered Midtempo anthem.

“Brave The Storm” is an album with light and shadow. Manora have a knack for beautiful melodies. And a singer whose voice can convince. However, the individual songs lack some variety, apart from a few exceptions (“The Heavens”, “Symphony Of Lies”, “A Beautiful Tragedy”). Also, the bombast is not overdone too much here. However, the really hard Metal elements are also missing. Despite all this, the band has managed to make a pretty good debut. But there is still a long way to go before they reach the top of the Dutch Symphonic Metal scene.

Manora – Wired to Obey:


Mirte van der Ham – Vocals
Ivo Visser – Guitar
Arthur Stok – Keyboard
Tomasz Kisielewicz – Bass Guitar
Tijn Scholtze – Drums

Track list:

  • System Shutdown
  • The Traveler
  • Break Your Fall
  • Wired To Obey
  • Pull The Strings
  • Endgame
  • Another Destiny
  • The Heavens (Are A Picture Frame)
  • Symphony Of Lies
  • Dreamshapes
  • The Sacrifice
  • A Beautiful Tragedy
  • 7/10
    Album - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Cover Art - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Song Writing - 8/10