Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Hump Day Hot Ticket: Hydra “Between Two Worlds”

Band photo courtesy of CrisVain Photography

Ever since starting this feature, my musical journey has taken me to many places—China, Slovenia, and all the way back to my hometown of Los Angeles—yet, in all my travels, I have not ventured to Germany; which, considering the genres of metal I particularly write about, seems a bit unusual. After all, many metal experts seem to agree that power metal was, if not invented in Germany, at the very least perfected there. With bands like Accept and The Scorpions laying down the groundwork for what power metal would become, along with Helloween ultimately kicking it into the stratosphere and Blind Guardian defining those power metal characteristics we recognize today, Germany's mark on metal music cannot be denied.

Germany also has not only a knack for producing their own talent, but scoping out good talent from other regions before the rest of the world catches on. As one of the first countries to fully embrace the female-fronted symphonic metal scene when it first hit Europe in the late ’90s, when bands like Nightwish and Within Temptation experienced their first bit of success outside the borders of their home countries, Germany has made itself known as the place to look when you're seeking out metal's next big thing. So you would think that by now, Germany would have at least hit my radar sometime among all this musical exploration.

In the realm of femme-metal, Germany has always been a heavy hitter. From the undisputed metal queen Doro Pesch all the way to original Arch Enemy frontwoman Angela Gossow, German women could rock right alongside the men.

For my entry this week, I came across Hydra, a German symphonic metal band fronted by the hypnotic voice of Lisa Rieger. What might come as a surprise to many that hear her stunning vocals is that, unlike many of her contemporaries in the scene, she is not a classically-trained vocalist! But she has a mighty voice all the same. Musically, the band reminds me a bit of early Nemesea, and could possibly appeal to fans of Epica, Xandria, or Leaves' Eyes.

In the video for the song “Between Two Worlds”, we see two contrasting images: one of Lisa in a dim setting, but her look is strong and confident; her hair flaming red, dressed in a beautiful gown as she dances to the music; the other in a bright, daylight backdrop, but the raven-haired woman in these scenes is shown here as confused and lost, dressed in dark colors, as she attempts to navigate her way through tunnels and stairwells. Obviously this is in keeping with the theme of the song title. Ultimately, the woman finds a crystal sphere throughout her travels, which glows brightly at the end of the video as she smiles, representing the strength and confidence she has now.

For more information on Hydra, visit their official website.

Special thanks to Demas Miller.

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