Lineup: Charlotte Lubbock - vocal, keyboards, John Lovell – guitar, vocal, Barney Cushman – guitar, backing vocal, Ben Lloyd - bass, Jack Slade - drums
Judging from the band formation date (2008), one could say that Symphony Cult are still kind of newbies to the scene who cannot really make a bit impact, but during their short time of existence they managed to release their debut album „Rewind To Fast Forward“ and as I am listening to it I cannot believe it really is just a debut album. The amateurism, lack of musician and composer skills I expected is just nowhere to be found so I take Symphony Cult as a talented bunch of musicians.
I should also mention right in the beginning that Symphony cult are not to be associated with gothic metal in any way (they often are, though). I listened to the album numerous times and I haven't found a single link between them and gothic metal. There are just a couple of hints during the melodic-atmospheric choruses, although I have to admit that someone could make that connection from hearing the vocals of the vocalist Charlotte. I really grew fond of her voice because she is not trying hard to sound like someone else which results in a very natural sounding vocal. I'd say Symphony Cult base their music mainly on nu-metal, but I wouldn't really put much emphasis on such a claim. I just find those moments here when I think of P.O.D. or Papa Roach. The guitar sound does contribute to the nu-metal pigeonhole the most I'd say – very dense and harsh, but classical rock and metal elements can also be heard in the songs. If I were to label them with a clear style description it would be something in the vein of alternative metal, say something like Serj Tankian kind of music.
The most typical song that contains all the ingredients that Symphony Cult use in their music would be the fifth song called „Confess“. Papa Roach-like intro turns into a classical hard rock tune and is followed by a heavy metal/grunge chorus. Czech band Dark Gamballe comes into mind. The strange thing about this song is that even though so many well-known influences can be hear, I don't really mind. It's a pleasant confrontation of something known with something new. Something I really like.
„Rewind To Fast Forward“ is a really surprising album. Not only that I still cannot believe that it's only their debut released one year after the band has formed, but it is also surprising how can many different musical styles communicate with each other. That would not be such a surprise if it weren't for such a new young band and performed so well. Symphony Cult certainly stepped in the right direction on the road to success and I hope they can continue on what they started with this album.