VISION DIVINE – THE HOUSE OF THE ANGELS, song from DESTINATION SET TO NOWHERE LP, 2012, earMUSIC

Metalview

Live at Borderline, Pisa, Italy, January 2013

Band based in Massa, Italy. Lineup: Fabio Lione – Vocals (Angra, Hollow Haze, Rhapsody of Fire, ex-Symmetry, ex-Labyrinth, ex-Kamelot (live), ex-Athena, ex-J. Storm); Olaf Thörsen – Guitars; Federico Puleri – Guitars; Andrea “Tower” Torricini – Bass; Alessio “Tom” Lucatti – Keyboards; Alessandro “Bix” Bissa – Drums.

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Suncrown

Suncrown is a truly international symphonic/epic metal band formed in 2011 by songwriter and keyboardist Oleg Biblyi (Ukraine) and vocalist Darren Crisp (USA). Then  guitarist Gustavo Bonfá (Brazil) and bassist Ederson Prado (Brazil) joined the group. In July 2011 Suncrown released their first video clip Follow Your Dream. In October Suncrown released a video clip in memory of Ronnie James Dio, Children of the Sea (Black Sabbath cover) with legendary drummer Vinny Appice (Dio, Black Sabbath and Heaven & Hell). Female singer Juliana Furlani (Brazil) and drummer Tim Zuidberg (Netherlands) then joined and in February 2012 another video clip, Believe, was recorded with 2 new members: guitarist Kevin Ellerby (USA) and flute player Uğur Kerem Cemiloğlu (Turkey). In June again a video was released: Eyes of the World, which showed the full group for the first time. In November 2012 the debut CD titled Follow Your Dream was released, and the second album You Are Not Alone is announced for a July release so stay tuned. Not only does this band master the difficulties of having members in four different continents, but also do they sound very skilled and very epic.
Members:
Darren Crisp – Vocals
Juliana Furlani – Vocals
Oleg Biblyi – Keyboards
Kevin Ellerby – Guitar
Ederson Prado – Bass guitar
Tim Zuidberg – Drums
Ugur Kerem Cemiloglu – Flute

Past Members:
Gustavo Bonfá – Guitar

Follow Your Dream 2012

1. Believe
2. Make This Life Worth Living
3. Eyes of the World
4. War Spirit
5. Destiny Call
6. Follow Your Dreams
7. Legend of the Forgotten Centuries
8. Beautiful Light
8. When Hearts Want to be Together
9. Lone Ship
10. Children of the Sea (Black Sabbath cover)

http://www.suncrownband.com

Thy Majestie – power metal from Italy

Thy Majestie is a Power metal band from Palermo in Italy that formed in 1998.

Their 6th studio album, ShiHuangDi, released in 2012 was my first encounter with the band and I am still asking myself, why this band is not better known. Reading their Wiki page it seems like they missed out on some important opportunities, like touring with Kamelot in 2002: They were invited by Thomas Youngblood but couldn’t afford the travel expenses and had to fulfill recording duties (for Scarlet Records). Or signing with LIMB music, duties with Scarlet Records again.

The album is a concept album, like some of the earlier releases about Jeanne D’Ark for instance. ShiHuangDi refers to the first Chinese emperor, and this sets the lyrical concept for the album. A few musical references to Eastern music here are overpowered by the unique power metal style. Bands like very early Kamelot come to mind, but not when it comes to vocals that are more high pitched, maybe like Fabio Leone (who actually sings on one track here) or again, someone compared the vocal style to Sonata Arctica. The approach is symphonic and epic, but never cheesy, and slightly progressive. I especially like the drums, hard ‘n’ heavy, like they should be. Lots of keyboards and some nice string arrangements, well fitted and not overdone. This is more metal than Royal Hunt’s latest release (where guitars are too much in the background and keys too much in the front) but otherwise this reference works well too.  Jump down there to listen for yourself ….

ShiHuangDi cover art

ShiHuangDi (2012)
1. Zhongguo
2. Seven Reigns
3. Harbinger Of New Dawn
4. Siblings Of Tian
5. Walls Of Emperor
6. Under The Same Sky
7. Farewell
8. Huanghun
9. Ephemeral
10. End Of The Days (featuring Fabio Lione)
11. Requiem

I’ll surely dive into the back catalogue of this band. Hastings 1066, a concept album (guess about what) seems to have been one of the most celebrated releases in Italy and maybe even whole of Europe, and progressive elements were more marked on some albums I heard.

Their releases:

Perpetual Glory (self released, 1999)
The Lasting Power (2000)
1066 (demo, 2001)
Hastings 1066 ( 2002)
Jeanne d’Arc (2005)
Dawn (2008)
ShiHuangDi  (2012)

thymajestie.com

Oceans Of Time

Oceans Of Time is a progressive metal band from Norway.

There’s not a lot of info around, just that they were founded by Lazz Jensen in 2005, played a lot of gigs between 2005-2008, with bands/Artists like Glenn Huges, Masterplan, Satyricon, then sterted intensive work on their debut album “FACES”. This was recorded in Jailhouse Studios Denmark and released about a year ago.Oceans Of Mind - Faces cover art
Tracklist:
01. Quest For Mystery
02. Walls Of Silence
03. The Beast
04. Faces
05. Kingdom Falls
06. A Touch Of Insanity
07. Roar Of Organs
08. Uncertainty
09. Panic
10. You’re So Cold
I just got the album and listened through it once, it won’t be the last time! These musicians are extremely talented and on a high level of technical skill. The songwriting too is top notch, wil keep you on the hook all the time.  An album that makes you come back, I’m sure it will grow on me with more listens. Definitely worth checking out, and keep track of the band as they have entered the studio again for the follow up album.
I’d recommend this totally for fans of bands like Circus Maximus, Seventh Wonder, Pagans Mind, Anubis Gate and the likes. Euro prog power at it’s best.
Line Up Ken Lyngfoss-Vocal
Lazz Jensen-Guitar
Geir Nielsen-Bass
Nicolay Ryen Christiansen-Drums

First video by Schysma – Lost In A Maze

Just when I managed to finish the review, Schysma have managed to finish their first video 🙂

Schysma, Progressive metal from Milan (Italy), present their first official videoclip,

“Lost in the maze” (Video Edit), based on the first EP Imperfect Dichotomy (2012).

http://www.facebook.com/schysma
http://www.schysma.com/

Schysma – Imperfect Dichotomy EP review

I’d like to introduce you to Schysma, an Italian progressive metal band who released an EP in Septmeber 2012. I think these are tracks that will also go on the full album that is scheduled to be released later in the year.

Schysma EP cover art

Tracks:

01. Lost In The Maze

02. Noise Of Silence

03. Migdal

04. Supreme Solution

05. Sinners

stream: http://www.facebook.com/schysma

First off Schysma is not your usual Italian metal that oozes epic heroism in symphonic brightness. Influences here may range from hard rock to industrial, and the most noteable sound at first are the vocals. Riccardo Minicucci’s voice has an extremely characteristic sound; maybe not everybody will like it, but I love it. And man, can this guy sing. Just you wait for the higher notes …  He’s got an ear for catchy melodies too and interesting vocal lines, never gaudy or cheesy, throwing in some perfect growls here and there.

The guitar parts are classic metal style, the solos just let you guess at the virtuosity of the player Vladimiro Sala, who never loses himself in pointless fast shred-overkills but serves the songs perfectly with Pink Floyd style solos. Here too we find catchy riffs that will stick although they are never simplistic or easy.

The keyboards add colour by use of sounds, I feel sure these will become a charcteristic hallmark for Schysma.

The whole EP comes across as a very powerful, dark and gloomy work of art that becomes more and more interesteing the more often I listen to it. The songs have drive and a lot of drama, that will not leave you unaffected. The lyrics are gloomy too. The intro to ‘Lost In The Maze’ is spoken by what I take to be a preacher ending with the repeated question, ‘What’s wrong with the world?’ and this seems to be the theme around which the songs are centered. Culminating in the song “Supreme Solution” with the words:  ‘… Genocide, ethnic cleansing, it’s all the fuck you need ..’

I definitely recommend checking this band out!

And that they are creative not only musically is proved by the pics on their facebook page, take a look at how they have a knack of creating athmospere visually.

A little background: It all started in 2009 as Purpleknights, but they soon disbanded again leaving Martina Bellini and Giorgio Di Paola working on the songs and who become the nucleus of Schysma. The band as it is now was formed in 2011 and 2012 and recordings for the EP must have started straight away. All band members have been active in different formations before that, but none of these bands are known to me at all (Ananke, SineVolume, Sehnsucht, Onderock,  Yanus, Babylon) but I read that Ananke put out a formidable power metal album in 2009 that you may be interested in checking out.

Martina Bellini – Keyboard and Programming
Giorgio Di Paola – Bass Guitar
Riccardo Minicucci – Lead and Backing Vocals
Vladimiro Sala – Lead Guitar and Backing Vocals
Luca Solina – Drums and Percussions

http://www.schysma.com/

guest post by Heidi Bobal