Reviewed: September, 2020
Released: 2020, Scarlet Records
Reviewer: Jack Merry
The fourth studio album from Scandanavian power metal outfit Veonity is an impressive beast. Setting a slighter darker and heavier tone than the band’s previous releases, Sorrows is a bold step into the future of metal that only falters a couple of times.
Lyrically, Veonity has moved beyond the conceptual story found on their previous work while just keeping a singular theme throughout the album. The songs on Sorrows detail issues of betrayal, grief, and solitude – all neatly wrapped up in a glorious, fist-pumping power metal blanket.
A small amount of symphonic additions as well as progressive elements that stray from the typical ultra-power metal style signify the band and puts them on a level playing field (and sometimes elevating them) against some of their peers such as Blind Guardian, Sabaton and Dragonforce. The brief opening instrumental “Broken” is a gorgeous melodic piano piece, and it’s not long until the raging rocker “Graced or Damned” blasts into action with all the might and fury of Thor swinging his hammer. Guitar leads soar above powerhouse rhythm patterns as Anders Sköld provides a gravity-defying vocal performance.
“Back In To The Dark” offers up a curveball during the introduction with some circus roadshow style keyboards before the crunchy riff kicks in, and “Blinded Eyes Will See” has some frenetic lead guitar work during the second half of the track. Big guitars, skyscraper vocals, and glorious melodies are all expected from the power metal genre at this point, and all of the songs on Sorrows deliver all of that and more in spades. “Center of the Storm” begins with my favourite guitar part on the entire album and contains a chorus that is destined for live performances, sounding custom-built to echo around arenas and stadiums for years to come.
The excellent “War” gives off a huge Sabaton vibe, not just from the title but its sound as well, so much so that I had to check it wasn’t written in collaboration with the Swedish war metal group. This is in no way a bad thing, but it is so remarkably similar it’s worth mentioning. Dragonland’s singer, Jonas Heidgert, features on the track “Where Our Memories Used to Grow” and it’s an inspired partnership, as Heidgert’s voice gels incredibly well with Veonity’s melodic yet crushing approach to songwriting. It’s a match made in heaven. Closing track “Fear of Being Alive” fares a little worse, however, as while being a solid metal track, it sounds like a combination of the rest of the music that precedes it and the chorus is a little too cheesy, even by power metal standards.
If you have anything more than a passing interest in power metal, then stop what you’re doing and listen to Sorrows immediately. If you’re not a fan, this may not be the album to win you over. It’s a brilliant power metal album that deserves a place on your shelf next to Dragonforce and Sabaton, filled to the brim with stadium-sized choruses, soaring vocal performances, and huge heavy metal riffs.