Album review: Insatia – Phoenix Aflame


If you’re a fan of female fronted metal (and let’s be honest, who isn’t?), then Insatia is an American/Canadian outfit definitely worth checking out. Phoenix Aflame is a record full of killer songs, great vocals and solid musicianship. So, let’s get into it!

The intro to the album serves up a brief a capella from vocalist, Zoe Federoff, the album’s real star. Classical music graces the background making it a suitably epic almost haunting beginning. Then it’s straight into Act of Mercy with its catchy as hell chorus, it’s a great way to get the album going. Memory of a Sapphire carries on the good work set by the opening track with another memorable chorus. Federoff is a star, her voice is high in the mix, but that’s okay because she is a joy to listen to. Sacred opens with a violin playing and there is a little more symphony work going on during this song. The chorus is kind of dreamy, very melodic and I dig it a lot. The violin reappears later in the song and it adds a real Eluveitie feel to things. We Are the Grey and the album’s title track carry on the good work before things slow down for the piano-led Not My God. This is a fantastic duet. Vocally the song is superb, with the male/female vocals complementing each other perfectly, and there is a terrific guitar solo to boot. There is a definite Nightwish feel to this song in all its grandiose and pomp. I love it, a real highlight and situated perfectly in the album’s track listing.

I think Captor and Captive is another solid song, but it’s the Celtic stylings of the moody, acoustic Velvet Road that I really enjoyed. Imagine if you will being sat around a campfire, the embers burning long into the night, a folksy tune travels through on the night as another story is told. It’s great stuff, and it goes to show that the band have yet another arrow in their quiver. The album finishes with its angriest song in Healer of Hatred. The drums and guitar are very reminiscent of Nightwish and I can imagine it being a killer live track.

I am a big fan of Nightwish, Epica and Elevietie. Insatia has the writing chops, musicianship and a fantastic frontwoman in Zoe Federoff to be able to rub shoulders with these bands. If you too are a fan of them then make sure you check out Phoenix Aflame.

4/5 soaring vocals from the Grim Reader.

Thanks to High Road Publicity for a digital copy of this album \m/


Insatia is an American/Canadian power metal band with female vocals. Founded in 2009 and fronted by Zoë Federoff, the band has released one self produced debut album and opened for multiple international acts, including Sonata Arctica and Dark Tranquility. In 2014 Fabio D’Amore (Serenity) and his partner Ivan Moni Bidin (Starsick System, Pathosray, Last Warning) announced their positions as producers on Insatia’s upcoming sophomore release, Phoenix Aflame. Joined by producer Staffan Karlsson, known for his work with Arch Enemy, Firewind, Roxette, and many other notable acts, Fabio and Ivan spent the first part of 2015 recording the album at St. Cecilia Studios in Tucson, Arizona, USA, with engineers Steven Lee Tracy and Robbie Williamson. The album’s production then went to Artesonika Studios, Fabio and Ivan’s home base, in Perdenone, Italy. In mid 2015 Insatia’s lineup was further enhanced by the addition of Dave Ablaze (Blackguard) on bass, as album production continued overseas. Kaelen Sarakinis and Daniel Millan were added on guitars and drums in 2016. Phoenix Aflame is set for a 2017 release and features Apollo Papathanasio (ex-Firewind, Spiritual Beggers), Chris Amott (ex-Arch Enemy, Armageddon), Christian Hermsdörfer (ex-Visions Of Atlantis, Serenity), and Erica James (The Erica James Band).  Fabio D’Amore and Christian Hermsdörfer appear courtesy of Napalm Records. Ivan Moni Bidin appears courtesy of Bakerteam records. Apollo Papathanesio appears courtesy of InsideOut Music. Chris Amott appears courtesy of Century Media.


Find out more about Insatia from Pitch Black Records


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