Released: 2010, Metalodic Records
In the summer I came across an album called HYPERBOREA, by a band called Vorpal Nomad, which is just fantastic. I reviewed it in September I noticed the album was released was on the up and coming Canadian label, Metalodic Records, which I knew had been around for a couple of years but I had not given the label the attention they deserved. Impressed by the quality of the Vorpal Nomad, I went to the Metalodic company web-site and basically bought their entire catalogue of eight albums by a roster of seven bands, at a hell of a good price I may add! So now, I’ve decided to review all those releases (minus the Vorpal Nomad of course) in a feature on Metalodic Records to support the label and it’s high-quality, international roster. The bands in the spotlight are Aclla, (Brazil), Caravellus (Brazil), Icewind (Canada), Instanzia (Canada), Kaktus Project (France) and two albums by Kerion (France). Please check out the reviews of these bands in this Metalodic Records feature.
Kerion, THE ORIGINS (MLC 002) was the second international signing for the Canadian label and the second album for the French quintet. The 2007 debut HOLY CREATURES SAGA introduced listeners to their world of high-fantasy called the Staraxis Saga and the story is continued on this album. The fantasy story-line is conventional with a hero, (Kelvar the warrior) dwarves, orcs, elves, dragons and of course an evil necromancer who engage in various battles and adventures. The story is summarized one a single page with some nice artwork as well. The whole booklet is visually very appealing with nice artwork, pictures and lyrics as well.
Kerion are firmly entrenched in the symphonic Power Metal realm much like their fellow countrymen, Fairyland and in fact Phillipe Giordana of Fairyland contributes some guest vocals as well. There are quite a few male voices but the primary vocalist is Flora Spinelli, who delivers her performance in a higher range with enthusiasm. The bands sound is very full and very busy; very symphonic, lots of majestic choirs, horns, stings and lots of double-kick driving the songs along. The songs swirl along with lots of clean guitar soloing and keyboards flourishes and even some slightly folk-like elements. There is some interesting flute/acoustic piano interplay on the track ‘Black Fate’. There are sound effects scattered through the songs that enhance the storyline as well bring the album to life.
There are quite a few European bands in this style and Kerion have what it takes to make it. THE ORIGINS is an excellent album, loaded with good performances, good songs and an engaging storyline. It is not exceptionally heavy but flows along sweetly with soaring melodies, big harmonies and a stylistic flair that is a hallmark of the symphonic Power Metal genre. Watch for my review of their next album, also in this feature.