Released: 2011, Napalm Records
Serenity and a handful of other Austrian bands (Edenbridge, Juvaliant, Visions Of Atlantis) have recently released new albums in the past year or so. It’s been a busy period for Austrian Power Metal and it’s rapidly growing scene! DEATH & LEGACY is the third album by Serenity but the first review of the band on our site.
Serenity is well-established in the symphonic Metal community scene with various members of Edenbridge and Fairyland coming and going through the bands history. Speaking of Edenbridge, Lanvall contributes a track on DEATH & LEGACY, called ‘Below Eastern Skies’ a simple but effective keyboard instrumental interlude with a Middle-Eastern vibe to the piece. Lanvall is not the only special guest either. The album is loaded with them, Ailyn from Sirenia, Amanda from Epica, Charlotte from Delain, each singer adding her flair to the songs. This album has a lot of star-power in their corner. Neuhauser is no slouch in the lead male vocal role however, his fluid elegant voice, with just a hint of an accent is reminiscent of Tony Kakko. There are some really dynamic multi-layered vocals on the track ‘State Of Seige’ that interplay with each other.
The philosophy of, ‘If it is not broken, don’t fix it’, applies in this situation. The band utilize the same producer, the same studio and achieve another sterling production job. DEATH AND LEGACY comes wrapped in a classic ‘ hot chick with sword’ themed album cover. As an irritated side note: I read a comment on-line about the album, from some guy who said that he the album was much better than the album cover lead him to believe. The scenario is exactly the opposite…I knew it could be a great album because the cover art is so awesome! The ‘hot chick with sword’ art demonstrates the band understands the basic principles of Metal and embraces the classic archetypes of the genre. What did he want on a Power Metal album cover, a guy and his girlfriend going for a walk, hand-in-hand on a sunny summer day, feeding the cute baby ducks at the lake in the park? What a moron. It irritates me when people judge an album negatively just by looking at the cover.
The writing core is intact and the result we are offered another stellar album that in truth doesn’t differ significantly from the last album. That’s a good thing because I really enjoyed the last album FALLEN SANCTUARY, as well. There are the requisite symphonic flourishes and some gothic elements as well. ‘Changing Fate’ starts with some cello and acoustic guitar and a soft vocal line before a female vocal kicks in time with the traditional drums. It’s quite a pretty song, one of the better ballads I’ve heard in a while.
In a few short years Serenity have established themselves as one of the premier bands in this realm and DEATH & LEGACY will only serve to strengthen their reputation and broaden their fan-base.