Phantasma: The Deviant Hearts

Delain vocalist pursues her novel idea

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Literature has long inspired metal acts, from Iron Maiden to Rammstein, but Delain vocalist Charlotte Wessels has taken things to the next level with her new symphonic rock project: she’s based Phantasma’s debut album on her very own novella.

But if you’re expecting The Deviant Hearts to sound anything like Delain, you’re in for a shock. They’ve even plucked guest musicians from prog acts Neal Morse Band and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Theatrical in tone with dual male/female vocals and a soft rock edge, the 12 conceptual tracks here have an almost wintery feel mixed with elements of Within Temptation, Tarot and even Queen – there’s no escaping those Flash Gordon-esque ‘Ahh-aahs!’ on Crimson Course!

Elsewhere, you could imagine Nightwish’s Marco Hietala’s power vocals on songs like Miserable Me, and then there are the ballads. The powerful Runaway Gray and_ The Lotus And The Willow _really showcase Charlotte’s beautiful vocals.

Phantasma’s debut feels like a movie soundtrack, although it’s not quite as dramatic as Nightwish or Epica. Just give them time.