The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world










‘Moonhorse’ that opens this debut from Avatarium starts off with the sort of plodding doom riffage that you expect a dark vocal waiting round the corner. The almost fragile vocal that then creeps in is both unexpected and intriguing. While the song itself takes another turn around the four minute mark with a Sabbathy guitar stab and the vocal grows more weighty before slipping back there are far more twists and turns; it’s an epic introduction to the band.


Avatarium is a different kind of band. Taking the template laid down by greats like Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult this is music that is at times comforting and familiar and at others strange and beautiful. The balance of fragility and power and at times even elements of pop will have you hooked.
Vocalist Jennie-Ann Smith has a great voice and at times like on ‘Pandora’s Egg’ conjures up thoughts of Heart’s Ann Wilson especially in her delivery.


For those not yet convinced, or just wanting more:  ‘Boneflower’ and 'Lady In the Lamp' (or the acoustic reworking of Black Sabbath’s ‘War Pigs’ from earlier this year sadly not on this release) are probably the tipping point. ‘Boneflower’ takes a dark theme about a forest where lovers go when they commit suicide and is a likely first single. It’s certainly one of the most compelling here.


Thankfully there’s plenty more and the bluesy elements shine in Jennie-Ann’s voice on the amazing ‘Bird of Prey’ and ‘Lady in the Lamp’ which also features thoughtful drumming and some nice keys. AVATARIUM is a band comprised of individuals that have many years under their belts and so it’s particularly fascinating that this sounds so very fresh and powerful.


To be honest this feels like the start of something massive.  AVATARIUM the album, will be out November 22. One of my picks of the year in what has been a great year for heavy music.



Mark Diggins