Released: 2015, Metal Blade Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
This is an interesting album in the fact that from the first song there seems much to recommend it. The title track has a nice beckoning circular rhythm throughout with the vocals adding to the old 80’s style sound. There are also some really good guitar riffs disseminated through the album and a lot of variance in style, tone and pace. For example, Curse of the Gypsy holds little by way of vocal time and is much more guitar driven. While Year of the Red Moon maintains those clear guitar lines but brings a slow moroseness to the pace, which cannot be shaken despite the more higher melody notes. To be honest though I was glad when the song had ended as it does drag and I welcomed the arrival of Heavy King; picking up the pace again which by this time is much needed.
Madness and Magik is easier for my ears to digest as though it contains much from the previous songs it is, at least at first, simpler and more straightforward in it’s approach, especially in the vocals. However then there is the break shortly after 1 1/2 minutes, leaving you with just a few guitar notes, and though I do like the later inclusion of military march sounding drums, and even later increase in rhythm, it is again for me too much in one song and like many of the others, I’m just not really sure where it’s going.
Orion’s sword is another curve ball in being less than a minute of pure instrumental of gentle guitars and keys proving a slight eastern sound and building into the last track Elysian, which at nearly 7 minutes in length seems to combine all of the afore use elements into this time. It begins slow and slightly morse, before picking up speed and adding a lightness through the higher guitar notes. The vocals go back to the first track and so draw the two together to complete the album. It also again highlights the noticeable aspects of this album, in that there are a lot of elements included within the songs and a lot of variety in these individual elements such as within the guitar lines, and the changing moods and pace, however, despite this the tracks don’t seem to go anywhere. The combination of everything and at times the pace of the track pushes you forward, but you feel as if you’re wandering without a map. There is no real progression throughout the tracks nor does the album pull forth any kind of reaction from me when listening to it. Despite the variance within the album it feels flat and if I’m being perfectly honest, throughout it’s quite a bland affair.
Review by Rowena.