The Mariana Hollow – Velvet Black Sky CD review

Many people will have become aware of The Mariana Hollow on their recent UK tour with the mighty Breed 77 and it’s this tour and the release of their second album, Black Velvet Sky that has got them recognised as one of the best female fronted rock bands of the 21st century. Fronted by the extremely gorgeous and talented Rebecca Spinks, The Mariana Hollow blends together elements of: Alternative metal, Goth rock and ambient, melancholic music to form a beautiful hybrid of musical serenity.  The Mariana Hollow is more than just a rock band. They are a musical force that appeals to everybody, showing off their musical talent and passion through the songs on this album. 

It’s the mixture of heavy parts and slower, more surreal parts that makes Velvet Black Sky the killer album is. It’s an album different and diverse to anything out there on the market. Tracks like the massive anthem that is ‘Your Halo’, the powerful, yet emotional ‘Knife to the Throat’ and the atmospheric sounding ‘Breathe’ are all songs that combine: Hard-hitting, distorted guitar lines, razor-sharp melody lines and catchy choruses, and it’s these three factors that make The Mariana Hollow’s tracks so musically stimulating and accessible.

There is something very dark and gothic to the tracks on this album, and it’s the mood and atmosphere of tracks like ‘Stand Your Ground’, ‘Second to None’ and ‘Weight of the World’, that really set the tone for the entire album. It’s not all about the music with Velvet Black Sky. It’s about combining lyrics with meaning and significance to music with raw emotion and power, to form well rounded songs that include something for everyone. Musically quite progressive – The Marina Hollow are a band who try to include so much style and flair into their music, making sure every song is different from another. This is what makes their sound innovative and quite unique!

Rebecca Spinks is by far one of the greatest female fronted rock/metal singers of the past 20 years. There is so much going on musically when she sings, and it’s all the power, emotion and raw energy present in each note that sets her apart from every other female singer in their game. The likes of Amy Lee, Tarja and Cristina Scabbia should all take a leaf out of Mrs Spinks’s book, looking at her vocal style for diction, tone and overall sound, to help perfect the way they sing and perform.

If album number two is this good, the skies really are the limit with future material The Mariana Hollow are to release. Velvet Black Sky is somewhat a stepping stone that will get The Marina Hollow recognised for the brilliant band they are and with 11 amazing songs under their belt, have one killer set list when it comes to playing live. A truly brilliant album from one of the UK’s hottest new bands! [8/10]

About Del Preston

So there I am, in Sri Lanka, formerly Ceylon, at about 3 o'clock in the morning, looking for one thousand brown M&Ms to fill a brandy glass, or Ozzy wouldn't go on stage that night. So, Jeff Beck pops his head 'round the door, and mentions there's a little sweet shop on the edge of town. So - we go. And - it's closed. So there's me and Keith Moon and David Crosby, breaking into that little sweet shop, eh. Well, instead of a guard dog, they've got this bloody great big Bengal tiger. I managed to take out the tiger with a can of mace, but the shop owner and his son, that's a different story altogether. I had to beat them to death with their own shoes. Nasty business really. But sure enough, I got the M&Ms and Ozzy went on stage and did a great show.