Reviewed: January, 2021
Released: November 27, 2020 Stormspell Records
Reviewer: The Elitist Metalhead
The New Wave of Traditional Heavy Metal, affectionately known henceforward as the NWOTHM, has really taken off. I’m not really getting the criticism of a lot of the bands that “they lack originality.” I actually don’t think the point is to be original. I’ve said it before, everything is borrowed from everything else. No, the point here is to play heavy metal as it was meant to be; raw, riff driven anthems meant to inspire the listener to bang their head and throw the horns….either alone or in groups. One such band is Medford, Oregon’s Sylent Storm. Formed in 2013 they released an EP in 2018. Their debut full length, THE FIRE NEVER DIES, is a very nicely done true metal album.
If one would make a comparison, I would say that, musically Sylent Storm has more of a European metal sound. In fact, the album art immediately made me think Euro-power metal. On the other hand, the vocalist, Jym Harris has that cross between Jason Tarpey (Eternal Champion) and Mark Shelton; not exactly the vocals of Euro-power metal but it works well. Sonically is a twin guitar attack that could be compared to Iron Maiden or maybe even Omen. The album opener, title track, and first single sets the mood for the album. Right off the bat, the guitars drive the song. The riffs just keep coming and the dual leads during the chorus hook you in. And not only are the riffs killer and plentiful, the leads are godly. The tone of the guitars on the leads stand out and solos themselves are tastefully done and technically brilliant. “Wrath of the Blade” follows the opener and slows it down and is more of a mid paced galloper. Once again, here is another song where the riffs are plentiful and executed brilliantly. The solo is godly and the sound could fill the room…they give me goosebumps.
As we progress further, we begin to see that those first two songs were not a fluke and that this album may be a gem. “Shadow In The Dark” is another standout track. One of the shorter songs on the album, the verse hooks you and the chorus is just brilliant. The riffs on the bridge just before the solo are monstrous and the solo just fills your ears with beautiful melodies. Then you have the epic “March Forth.” This song has many layers and the riffs just keep coming and the chorus is so catchy. The dual leads are placed perfectly throughout the song. Rounding out the album is the six and a half minute monster, “Betrayal.” This song moves from straight ahead galloping rocker to speed metal and even some slower melodic parts. This has an early Iron Maiden feel and is the perfect way to end the album.
As I said, I was initially drawn to this album because of the album art. When I played the album, I was surprised at what I was hearing and to find out they were from this side of the pond, that made it even more interesting. Sylent Storm are a band I had never heard of until I came across THE FIRE NEVER DIES. I hope that flame keeps burning because I’m already gearing up for their next release. You need this album!