Reviewed: July, 2020
Released: 2020, Massacre Records
It has been ten long years since the last Fairyland album. When there is that much time between albums, after a while, you almost give up hope. I always hoped they would continue on, they were to not to make more music.
The French Power Metal band has returned, now on Massacre Records and have delivered their fourth album OSYRHIANTA. If you are familiar with the band an their epic three-part conceptual piece; OF WARS IN OSYRHIA (2003), THE FALL OF AN EMPIRE (2006) and THE SCORE TO A NEW BEGINNING (2009) then the title will give you some clue they have lyrically continued on in the universe of their own creation.
The guitarist and drummer from the last album are out and Sylvain Cohen (guitar) and JP Pol (drums) both members of another great French Power Metal band, Kerion, are on this record. The album looks superb with Chilean artist, Gonzalo Ordenez once again doing the cover art depicting some sort of battle-angel. Ordenez also does the art for Kerion so maybe there is some sort of connection there.
Thankfully the band picked up musically and sonically right where they left off over a decade ago. OSYRHIANTA is as good or better than anything they have ever done. The album is as epic, bombastic and symphonic as anything they have ever done. We get great sweeping soundscapes, theatrical dynamics, and big backing gang vocals al lover the place. The pace of the album is still very quick, which I always appreciate. There is also a sense of gravitas amongst the proceedings which is always welcome as many Power metal bands these days are pandering to the comedic element, with joke songs or novelty cover tunes. Fairyland keeps it true.
If you are a fan of vocals this will appeal to you they are a host of styles and deliveries on this record, including the choirs, narration, and aforementioned gang-vocals. That brings me to an interesting point, this is the fourth album in a row the band has changed lead singers! The new vocalist is Fransesco Cavalieri, who is also the singer of Wind Rose. Their original singer, Elisa Martin provides the female vocals on the album as well.
Although it was a decade, Fairyland has not missed a single step and the new album OSYRHIANTA is a very welcome chapter in the epic saga.
1. The Age of Birth
2. Across the Snow
3. The Hidden Kingdom of Eloran
5. Heralds of the Green Lands
6. Alone We Stand
7. Hubris et Orbis
8. Mount Mirenor
9. Of Hope and Despair in Osyrhia
10. The Age of Light