Evolvent hails from France and incorporates the typical Nightwish sound. With tons of classical arrangements and opera vocals, this band inserts some fresh blood in the scene and I'm quite sure many young goth girls will embrace this (and the guys will try to embrace the girls, but that's a completely different story). The band has been around since 2001, starting out as a studio project for keyboard and piano player Sèbastien Latour. Gradually, and with some line-up changes, the band took on a complete form and evolved into a doom metal band only to grow further into the gothic metal band they are today.
Despite the evolution towards ever heavier music, the piano remains a central instrument. It's present in the bombastic intro and gets a prominent place throughout the entire album. So are the keyboard arrangements. It's these two instruments who make up most of the magical atmosphere while the guitars, bass and drums create a solid rocking backbone. This combination results in some great songs, like 'Win Or Die' and 'Hurricane'.
Of course, the soprano voice of Emma adds a lot to the music, much like Tarja did in Nightwish. It gives the whole an extra sense of drama and fits perfectly with the symphonic nature of the music itself. On 'Love Doesn't Love Me' there's also some death growls present, which is a welcome variation. 'Our Fate', which opens with something that reminds me of a children's music box, is a beautiful ballad, driving on intimite piano and accompanied by clarinet and orchestral arrangements.
All these different instruments and electronic elements are practically always a guarantee for a well-varied album and in that aspect 'Whatever Happens' is no exception. Regular shifts in tempo, atmosphere and heaviness keep the album enjoyable for the entire duration. 'We Are' is another bombastic piece of symphonic metal which is followed by the epic 'Over Seasons And Time', one of the best songs on this album.
I often encounter albums from genres I don't often listen anymore. To be honest, I actually haven't listened to Nightwish in twelve years or so and I don't plan on starting it again. As far as gothic or symphonic metal is concerned, I'll stick with bands like Evolvent who succeed in keeping the genre fresh. I'm already curious about the next step of evolution for this band. But most of all, I hope they will reach a wide audience with this, they truly deserve it...