Black Svan are a Drogheda based Metal Band who have been playing in the metal scene since 2009. They released their latest album ’16 Minutes’ through the French label M&0 on the 20th October this year. The album has 10 tracks and none of them disappoint, with slick production and serious performers behind the wheel! Metal fans certainly seem to appreciate what this impressive five-piece has produced as the group achieved the No. 2 spot on the Irish Metal Charts falling just under Slipknot. So they’re not playing to a deaf audience, well not until after the gigs perhaps…

’16 Minutes’ is an album that has everything I’ve come to expect from a big budget metal band but I don’t think they’re millionaires just yet. The energy is ever-present, with precision rhythm and a solid wall of well-engineered guitars. The album is dynamic and rich in a variety of textures and modes; you won’t be allowed to get bored. The group’s lead vocalist Keith Caffrey is well up to the task with the added dynamic of switching between modes from a haunting Layne Staley to the brute force of Serj Tankian.

The lead tracks for me included ‘Retribution’, the big opener which is a joy to explore; ‘16 Minutes’ the title track which is impressively tight, melodic and has epic title-track worthiness to it; and finally the last track which has an accompanying video on YouTube called ‘Sickness’ – The album-closer and rightly so, with its powerful chorus and emotive tone… Must listen!

According to their website their influences include Pantera and Alice In Chains, which is evident, but they hold their own sound confidently in the ranks of the world metal scene, for what my opinion is worth. The only thing that could have let this album down was trying too hard, endangering themselves in letting the music exceed their ability but the whole 10 tracks stack up tall and strong showcasing the band’s technical and emotional ability. It all gel’s nicely and has a consistent strength throughout and must have involved some serious graft. I like this album a lot and I don’t even have to pay for it….But you should!

Black Svan plays The Academy in Dublin this Fri Nov 14th and Toale’s Bar, Dundalk next Fri 21st Nov.