Gräce is new band put together by the Spanish vocalist, composer and producer Isra Dante Ramos. Not a name I know but he has been involved with other bands from Spain such as Alquimia and Avalanch as well as running a solo project called Amadeüs. He is a well known personality on the Spanish metal scene having something like 20-years experience in the business and it is obvious that he likes to keep himself very busy.
Ramos has brought in a team of quality musicians with Alberto Román and Jordi Costa on guitars, Jared Camps on bass and Joel Marco on drums with the twin guitar players being worthy of special merit for their sterling work and killer solos. There are several guests too with the hard working Ronnie Romero with vocals on Evergarden, Jessie Williams with vocals on The Nowhere Man and Paula C Boldu on Blind Love. The track Snow White gets the full treatment with guest vocalists Cristina Lopez and Noelia Izquierdo joining in with the brass section of Ivan Jimenez (trumpet), Jordi Sans (sax) and Alejandro Ramirez on trombone to give something of a swing flavour to the proceedings.
It appears that Ramos has moved away from his comfort zone with Hope as he wanted to make an album of electronic themed melodic metal and he has done just that, however, it might just be a touch too pop oriented for some as the album flirts between metal and soft Euro rock and the background disco beat keyboards may irritate as many as they delight. Strangely though, keyboards are not credited on the album at all even though they make up such a big part of the sound. Ramos has a very pleasing voice in the Freddie Mercury-like range and reminds very much of Adam Lambert, Mika (if you remember him) and even Lukas Forchhammer of Danish band Lucas Graham.
Indeed, the overriding sound I get when listening to Hope is ‘Muse’ which is no bad thing but if Gräce is to become a fully functioning band rather than a project then Ramos needs to work on the identity that he is trying to create. For sure, you will enjoy Hope as it is a very pleasing album and superbly played but you just get the feeling that you have heard it all before.
- Atreyu (5:19)
- The Nowhere Man (4:52)
- Blind Love (4:17),
- The Sinner (5:11)
- Snow White (At The End Of The World) (4:48)
- Evergarden (ft. Ronnie Romero) (4:34)
- Fiona (3:10)
- Together (4:43)
- Atomic Heart (3:56)
- Invincible (4:28)
- Hope (1:05)