Beseech Souls Highway

Another goth band mixing female and male vocals, Beseech is a little less metal and a little more rock than many of their counterparts. Although the band's female vocalist is quite talented, her silky voice over the album's airiest passages brings Souls Highway dangerously close to easy listening. Beseech is most entertaining when they're revelling in gothness, as they do in the bonus track - a slow, dark and fun version of Abba's "Gimme Gimme Gimme" - and they're most interesting when they exploit the instrumental textures of their music. Souls Highway includes some good songs - "Fiction City" and the title track are two that stand out - but even though this is their third release, it suffers from a lack of focus. Genre crossovers work really well for some, but Beseech ends up sounding somewhat confused about their direction. (Napalm)