Released: 2014, Bakerteam Records
At times I get disheartened with the contemporary or trendy Metal scene especially the sections infected by the hipsters . I worry about their constant non-Metal influences these young artists and fans bring into the Metal genre, but then a brand new band like Astral Domine comes along and restores my faith in Metal.
I can always rely on the Italians to adhere to the principles of true Metal as that great nation is a stronghold for Power Metal. Founded a few years back Astral Domine has the talent to secure a record deal right away and got signed to Bakerteam Records. They also had what it takes to catch the eye of the Golden god himself, Fabio Lione (Rhapsody Of Fire) who contributes some guest vocals.
The bands debut, ARCANUM GLORIAE falls firmly in the epic, symphonic Power Metal league and all the good qualities that entails. Sporting an understated, yet effective and eye-catching cover, the 10 track, hour long album, looks good and sounds good. The album starts with a longer introduction with both male and female narration accompanied by some sound effects and orchestration. Then as we had hoped the album kicks off with a one-two strike of double-kick fuelled cuts with blazing guitars and soaring vocals. Up next is ‘Moonlight’, a tender ballad with acoustic piano accompanying some nice restrained vocals from Marco Scorletti. One of the strengths of ARCANUM GLORIAE are the folk elements that are scattered through the album. Another highlight are the massive gang-vocals, sounding much like a male choir really adding that extra layer of depth to the singing. The founder and lead guitarist Luca Gagnoni is a performer to watch as his fiery solos bring extra excitement to the speedy songs. This album is enormously entertaining; diverse, complex and well written, and performed superbly.
As I said in my introductory paragraph, as long as there are talented young musicians playing real Metal, the global scene is safe, secure and will continue to grow for years to come, and all those trendy bands will fade away as they have so many times before and bands like Astral Domine will be left standing on top.