The first Music Monday is here! And since I don’t really have an album to highlight just yet (and yes I know I missed June and July so far), I am rather going to highlight three new albums that I am currently listening to. One of them might even run the gauntlet and earn itself a full on Sort-Of Music Review!
They appeared to me via Apple Music’s For You section, so a computer (or person) is under the impression I would like them. At this stage, we go with what the algorithm says, since it has been more hit than miss. I mean, I still get some Cardi B in my playlist, so that must be the human error coming through…
Covering 3 different sub-genre’s of metal, I am sure there will be something for even the most discerning listener out there. So lets dive in!
First up we have Turilli/Lione Rhapsody’s Zero Gravity (Rebirth and Evolution). The band – Turilli/ Lione Rhapsody – seems to have come from the dissolving of the band Rhapsody of Fire. And that’s the least confusing thing about this album. Italian symphonic power metal comes at you with full force on this album, and its some of the best symphonic power metal I have heard this year so far. Just a side note – you’ll want to listen with headphones. Preferably good ones. The music is so layered, so well constructed, you really have to have your first listen with your full attention. Take out all the distraction and treat yourself to the epic first track – Phoenix Rising. On the second listen, go through the absolutely bat crazy lyrics. Seriously. “To evolve as a perfect triangle for the alignment of my soul.”
This whole album is next level musically, so do not pass this up. But do yourself a favour – listen with attention, with headphones. Get immersed in every facet of this album and be amazed. Power metal album of the year right here! In my opinion, of course.
Secondly, we do a complete 180 for something completely different with Tengger Cavalry’s Northern Memory, Vol. 1. If symphonic power metal is not your scene, how about some Mongolian nomadic folk metal? Does that sound interesting, or what! Incorporating Mongol throat singing (which has gotten quite popular thanks to the band The Hu) with traditional central Asian music, and you end up with Tenggar Cavalry. Pounding riffs, fantastic growling, music you can bang your head to, and some amazing vocals. If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll have seen their song that got me on board.
Lone Wolf is the song in question and its just amazing. The one thing that takes getting used to with Tenggar Cavalry is the way their songs end. Or don’t. The chorus finishes, and the music almost instantly fades out. Its very much like having half your cake taken away while you’re still eating it. You were busy enjoying that, but wait, here comes another, different cake, lasting just long enough for you to start enjoying it before it, too, gets taken away. The music is so good, and yet leaves me so frustrated. I have to listen to each song about 3 times to get my ‘fill’. Anyway, these guys are great, and you really should give them a listen! I love the way they meld all the different types of music into something that makes you feel like you can take on the world!
And lastly, some epic storytelling in Atlas Pain’s Tales of a Pathfinder. Atlas Pain is for fans of Equilibrium, Wintersun, Ensiferum, John Williams and Hans Zimmer. Yeah, you read that right. Combining epic folk metal with cinematic scores and story telling, this Italian (again!) band is something extremely special. Every song is wide open with its epic sound. It hard to explain this type of music. Its actually easier to describe it in film score, or epic movie moments. And thats pretty much what they are going for. Atlas Pain really manage to capture the sense of adventure that I have only found in movies, and turn it into music.
The song that got me interested is Kia Kaha. For all those outside of New Zealand, this is Maori for Stay Strong. And it became the motto for the country after the terrible Christchurch attack. Kia Kaha was everywhere you looked. As an adopted kiwi, Kia Kaha has come to mean a lot to me, not just because of the country’s journey, but my own in getting here. So of course, seeing that, it became the song I played first in my playlist. And I was not disappointed.
Starting off with a long intro, and really capturing the spirit and the power of a Haka, the story is a Maori legend telling of a warrior fighting to save his love. In the intro alone, it mixes Haka with orchestra and it just works so well. Its well worth multiple listens, and this album will also need headphones to enjoy a proper listening experience. Everything is so well thought out, and so well structured, it blows my mind.
There you have it. Three songs from three bands that I think deserve your attention. Seriously, sit down with a cup of tea, find some good headphones, and crank these songs out. After listening to these bands, the future of metal is only going to get brighter. And I look forward to hearing the bands these guys inspire.
Thanks for reading, I hope you found something you like. If not, there is always next week!