Weend'ô is a female fronted Rock band, claiming to balance between ‘PINK FLOYD's ambient references and TOOL's modern riffs’. I beg to differ!
Their first album, ‘You need to know yourself’, released January 2012 shows more influences from the music of RIVERSIDE and US band BRAVE, due to the band’s wish to experiment on different styles and incorporate them in their music. When they groove out, they do remind me of ARABESQUE from Netherlands without ending up as heavy.
Laetitia’s vocals remind me of the ARABESQUE singer at times as, fortunately, she is not what we call… an operatic singer. At times she sounds like Anneke (ex THE GATHERING), at others she offers some spoken verse.
Musicianship is tight – the band is well rehearsed and the album well produced. Terence (guitar) doesn’t hesitate to throw in some heavy riffs at times, but also includes lots of acoustic parts.
Concerning the influence of PINK FLOYD, luckily there isn’t much here. Any slow ambient part is quickly followed by some intense playing from the rhythm section.
All songs are easy listeners, not too heavy, just as progressive as necessary. Most tracks are between 4 and 6 minutes, yet there are two 9 minute ones, "Betrayal" and "Deadline", both offering lots of interaction between the calmer and heavier parts as well as progressive elements. There is also some interesting 7/8 development on "Runaway", followed by spoken words from Laetitia and some interesting guitar work. As for the song "Welcome in my Mind", it shows the heaviest TOOL influence.
Alternative versions of the three first songs are repeated at the end of the CD. In my opinion that could have been avoided. Without their inclusion, the album duration would have been a manageable 50 minutes, and would have ended with the beautiful piano ballad "The Soulmate".
‘You need to know yourself’ is a great album that will satisfy all fans of good female fronted Rock. As for the prog fans, its commerciality will not scare them away, as there is a riff here, a section there that will keep their interest throughout the album.
· Ιnfo of the day: The name "Weend'ô" is a sort – of anagram of the name of Laetitia and Terence’s son, Ewen.