Bella Novela
Street: 11.25.14
Bella Novela = Malice Mizer + Heart + Queen
One note into this album and I was suddenly transported into a heroic anime battle. The mix of power metal and glammy pop rock confused me at first, but two songs in, on “Telemetry,” I was bounding around my house furiously shredding on air guitar. The album can come off as cheesy, but songs that drop into a heavier register, like “Corazon,” balance out the candy-sweet aspects of their music. Heavily layered female vocals and synth strings add a weird electronica kick. “Lenora” features mostly classical Spanish acoustic guitar, then out of nowhere, drops into heavy power chords and strong vocals. Bella Novela have brought another dose of sparkly Japanese-style metal to the U.S. and added their own twist, creating a unique and indulgently mystifying album. –LeAundra Jeffs