|Symphonic Power Metal
Madtone Music, (2013)
March 7th, 2012 / February 22nd, 2013
Release length: 57:26
Each instrument comes in crisp and fills out the tracks for thed most part, especially with the louder symphonic elememts that come from the keyboards, really adding a somber beauty that is hard to ignore, and can illicit the urge to let a tear or two slip out from even the most hardened of listeners. The guitars have a heavy mid-range sharpness that often seems to be composed of simpler chords, but the keyboards help to fill the in the slower passages. The music does seem richr when played faster, especially with the subtle deeper bass guitar that does make an impact, but can be drowned out by everything else going on. Vocally, the passion of the atmosphere is matched perfectly, mostly handled in a lower clean singing that focuses more on passion and emotion, though sometimes can hit higher notes that do seem a bit out of place. Finally there’s the drumming, which finds crisp cymbals thar ae3 pretty loud, much like the strong click of the bass kicks, as well as the rich snares.
But, with that said, it’s obvious that Damnation Angels are not that unique a group. “Ad Finem” is aq nice two plus minute instrumental that feels more like an orchestral score to a bivg budget blockbuster film, and that’s fine. It sounds beautifuol and stirring, preparing the listener for what’s to come perfectly. But, almost right away, you can pick up on a modern Nightwish influence, which only grows stronger the further into the album you get. This track ends, but still seems to bleed seamlessly into the ten minute “The Longest Day of my Life,” which is a very moving opus that will immediately grab the listener with the passion and emoional environmen that, at times, can make the most hardened of listener fighting back a tear due to the symphonics and astounding vocal performance. The whole track will immediately remind listeners of Kamelot as well, a welcome addition to the aforementioned group similarity. Many passages are handled slowly, a trademrk of this album, but one that is perfect for evoking an emotional response from anyone able to hear the beautiful musidc being performed,. There’s aslo plenty of areas that showcase additional energy, such as guitar solos and and an upbeat, positive sounding chorus.
“Hope” isn’t quite as powerful a track as many others, but this one is just an upbeat song that’s simply infectious, and it’s clear that’s all it’s meant to be. Sometimes it does try to incorporate a little more of an emotional toll, which is all well and good, but That’s more towards the start before the gradual build to an upbeat, motivational conclusion. There’s also the longer instrumental bridge during “Bringer of Light that throws the environment into a different terrain. Much of that song finds an upbeat performance once more, but rhis section in particular ushers in a bit of insanity that works for the loueder, more epic latter passages. Again, that Nightwish touch is pretty obvious, but it ends up bcoming a highly enjoyable song with a tight performance that’s hard to ignore, as well as forget.
But, of all the songs to appear here, the cover of Metallica‘s “Four Leaf Clover” is the most intriguing. In no way does the song really fit the tone of the album at all, and it does pull you out of the engrossin emotional recording. But, in it’s defense, it’s pretty much a carbon copy of the original, and just as enjoyable. The orchstral arrangements are handled quie well through he keyboards, the guitars sound really close to the same distortions and levels the original has, and the vocals shift to a bit of hasher approach hat retans enough of he passionate touch rxhibited on other songs. While this track could easily be ignored, and really should have just been a bonus track at he end of the recording, there’s no denying it’s still a well executed tribute to such a fantastic piece of Metal history, and is worth hearing at least once for how close it is to the original performance.
For 02013, Massacre Records picked up Bringer of Light for a much wider distribution option. One spin through this release, and it’s pretty clear why the label decided to get behind this album, and try to reach more fans of Metal than he iniial pressing ever did. Of course, there’s no real difference to this version than the original pressing aside a different barcode aned label logo. All ten oiginal tracks are here, as is the initial artwork. However, given that this was on such a small underground label from Tokyo, it’s easy to justify buying this edition more out of pure accessability, making this a prime purchase option go discovering$ an risng star in the Poer Metal field without having to break the bank unless yotu’re anl about first printings.
While Bringer of Light is far from an original or unique album, it takes the Nightwish and Kamalot influences and works them together in such a beautiful and passionate manner that you can’t help but be engrossed by the band, and the music. It’s a real shame that this effort was pressed in such a limited and distant manner, and fans of this brand of Power Metal absolutely should seek out this recording, even considering the oddly placed Metallica cover towards the end. Thankfully, Massacre Records has made this album widely available, so now is your chance to pick it up at an accessable price. That being said,
01. Ad Finem – 2:12
02. The Longest Day of My Life – 10:01
03. Reborn – 4:20
04. I Hope – 6:05
05. Acerbus Inceptum (Pt. I) – 2:24
06. Someone Else (Pt. II) – 5:51
07. ringer of Light (Pt. III) – 5:28
08. Shadow Symphony (Pt. IV) – 5:58
09. No Leaf Clover (Metallica cover) – 5:21
10. Pride (The Warriorâ€™s Way) – 9:46
|Initial Pressing Score: 8.5/10
2013 Reissue Score: 8.5/10