Home News Melissa released a newest video for My Empire Has no Limits. Province strikes back with Groove Metal!

Melissa released a newest video for My Empire Has no Limits. Province strikes back with Groove Metal!

by Zoran Pavlović

If we should mention a band that did not want to postpone their publishing activity at any cost in the midst of quarantine and all that for the love of metal music, then we should definitely mention the heavy groove metal band Melissa from the deep province of Serbia. The band has existed since 1986, but disbanded in 1995. The love for metal music did not stop however, so the two original members Dexter (vocals/guitar) and Ifta (drums) already in their late forties, invited some fresh blood to join them during 2017. With young musicians then still in highschool, bassist Boro and lead guitarist Ilija, band patiently and with passion worked on material for occasional concert activities. Although fans of the classical heavy metal sound that marked the first part of the band’s work, members decided to give their music a more modern flavour so that in Encyclopaedia Metallum they are classified in the subgenre Thrash Groove Metal. Their style is very difficult to determine due to original musical solutions though, at least to me. They are recording their material in the Paradox studio of the famous guitarist Srdjan Brankovic of AlogiA, who took care of the production that would match sound of their live concerts and he greatly managed to do that. So, let’s do short retrospective of their recent works.

Very soon after, during 2019 and 2020, they released singles, the first of which for the song Madness in my Head, which with its ferocity and modern approach attracted a lot of attention in the region. Remarkable Serbian Metal Portal and Metal Maldoror Box show on Croatian Music Channel TV were first ones to broadcast the band. Then the publishing and broadcasting band’s videos continued. Finally, it all resulted in the release of the still current CD My Empire Has No Limits for the notable Serbian record label Take It Or Leave It Records on July 8, 2020 in the midst of a pandemic.

The CD album received incredibly positive reviews in the region and parts of Europe, so Melissa is one of the few metal bands from the region that has an enviable number of views on YouTube, their material is available on Deezer, Spotify or Metal Tracker as well as a place on regional and foreign radio and TV channels and portals because its popularity is considerable in parts of Europe and some parts of Latin America, which is the case with a large number of metal bands from Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, which have a large fan base abroad. Quarantine and the impossibility of concert activities did not discourage the guys from the deep metal province to go further, so on June 5th, 2021 they released a fourth single video for the song Darkness of Love.

The music on the album has not left anyone indifferent so far, drums beat like machine gun fire, guitars and bass offer artistic thunder and the singer skillfully uses a very original brutal combination of growl and infernal scream techniques which is one of the band’s highlights alongside with drumming and constructions of songs. The entire material on the album reveals an extremely original approach that contributes to the rich regional metal scene (primarily Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina) as another of the distinctive and productive heavy metal scenes in Europe. We should mention some more Metal Heroes of Lockdown that we will write about, such as the Croatian metal wizzards Inceptor, one of the leading epic power female fronted bands Claymorean or Oathbringer from Serbia, and the Bosnian hardcore thrash crossover Urban Instikt and a really huge number of other fantastic metal acts…should we mention world’s rock/metal hero from Croatia, Dino Jelusick?!

Speaking of subjects covered in the songs, Melissa draws attention to social problems, emphasizes self-belief, and points to the struggle for rights and has pretty anti-authoritarian attitude. Musically, the band did not want to go much further than their true heavy metal roots to which they were loyal in their teenage days as one cannot count on virtuous solos which guitarists are sure capable of since it would ruin conception. It is interesting that the band did not want to change the name they got in 1986 after the album of Mercuful Fate, which are still their favorites today, alongside with many other heavy metal and hard rock bands of seventies and eighties of the last century on which they grew up. Although the pandemic prevented a breakthrough on the international market or at least only half of breaktrough, the band does not give up and recently started concert activities. The latest video for the song My Empire Has no Limits was premiered on september 18. The shots were taken in Serbia and north of Norway. Melissa is just another stubborn band to show how the province strikes back right in the face as Arwat from Osijek that we covered in last album review has showed too.

Let’s pay attention to their newest gunfire release for what frontman of the band Dexter emphasizes its specific value: “This theme oozes a brutal emotion that we tried to convey in a credible way in this video work. “It’s quite different from our previous screenings, but also many of the bands that cultivate similar musical vocations in Serbia and the region contributing to originality of the scene itself. We see it as a very important step towards the top. At the same time, we try to spread optimism, faith and hope.”

Directing and editing of video: Srdjan Brankovic, drone worker: Stefan Stojanovic

Line Up:
Dexter (Dejan Stojanović) – vocals/guitar
Ifta (Ivan Miljković) – drums
Boro (Boro Radoja) – bass guitar
Ilija Milosavljević – solo guitar
Residence: Prokuplje, Serbia
photo credit: Miloš Miladinović Topi

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