Wardens Of The West Wind

SKU: SC274-0
Label:
Scarlet Records
Category:
Power Metal
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"Symphonic Power/Progressive metal group Wind Rose are sure to impress with this epic new album Wardens Of The West Wind. If you appreciate groups like the rousing metal bands Fairyland and Blind Guardian then I do suggest that you give Wind Rose a go.

This is their second full-length album, and although I haven't heard Wind Roses's first Shadows Over Lothadruin from what I have read as impressive as that album was the Italian band has stepped up their game with Wardens Of The West Wind. That very cool cover art is by Felipe Machado Franco his other work can be seen on metal albums by the likes of Blind Guardian, Brainstorm, Rage and Rhapsody Of Fire. Bass player/producer Cristiano Bertocchi a former member of the prominent Italian metal groups Labyrinth and Vision Divine had also spent time working with Wind Rose and he joined the band in 2014.

Folk ingredients are present and with the inviting sounds of traditional instruments and male chants on "Where Dawn And Shadows Begin" this is the precursor to some rather spirited metal on "Age Of Conquest". "Heavenly Minds" is very memorable with a touch of Symphony X in the chorus. Though the band is inspired by Symphony X and also Blind Guardian and Dream Theater. Wind Rose's songs really captivate, Francesco Cavalieri's excellent lead and those male group vocals are very likeable and they are integrated to great effect. The musical side of Wind Rose is also riveting with a fair degree of complexity, power and that symphonic charm plus while yes it's present Wind Rose's songs aren't constantly locked in rapid metal mode.

The longest track a potent epic called "Skull and Crossbones" is just over seven minutes, but there is no need for those over extended songs on Wardens Of The West Wind when the ten on offer should more satisfy your epic musical needs. Wardens Of The Wind should go a long way to ensure a steady increase in the number of Wind Rose fans." - Sea Of Tranquility

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  • "See here, they have managed to get a deal. MOURNING CARESS, Germany's finest Melodic Deathers! A Spanish label, Arise Records, won the competition, not a bad thing, because they have a good distribution, so Arise-releases are available everywhere.What has changed compared to the mini "Perspectives"? Basically nothing, apart from the even better sound and longer playing time. The highlights of the mini, "A Lifeless Time" and "Hope Dies At Last", can be found here, too, sounding fatter, but apart from that untouched, which is good! What makes MOURNING CARESS differ from the rest of the countless Melodic Death-acts? Not that they play a totally new variant of this style, they just write good songs and have a feeling for gripping melodies without losing control over the song. I even can detect a certain Rock'n'Roll-touch. The super-fat production by Andy Classen (mastered in Finnish Finnvox) crowns the whole thing. Doesn't sound too spectacular, it isn't anyway. The songs often are further enhanced by some acoustic interludes. Mid-paced numbers are in the majority, but the folks also have a few faster tracks in the repertoire. Good Melodic Death doesn't need to come from Sweden. Unfortunately we have a real flood of musically comparable products."Imbalance" for sure is among the better releases. Also remarkable is the quite original voice of singer Gerrit, with a slight Hardcore-touch, which is very characteristic. So, if you see this, arrest it! " - Metal Observer
    $2.00
  • ""It has happened to me twice here in 2009. You stumble upon a band that you have never heard of which totally blows you away. The first time was with the band Anima Mundi out of Cuba. Now, it has happened a second time.From Germany comes the band AtmOsfear with their third release called Zenith. After hearing this one, I am now they have me on a mad search for their past two discs. I cannot believe that they have been ignored by the prog metal world if the past music is as good as this album. Any fan of groups such as Dream Theater, Symphony X or Evergrey whom they have shared a stage with, are in for a treat that is the equal of any of these bands.The disc kind of lulls you in with the short instrumental intro titled "Beginnings". Aptly titled as this is only the start of what is about to fill your senses. The five remaining songs fill the remaining 70 minutes of music and it culminates in the almost 30 minute epic "Spiral Of Pain". Along the way you are treated to a group of five musicians that can hold their own with anyone you would like to name. Stephan Kruse on keyboards, vocalist Oliver Wulff, bassist Burkhart Heberle along with drummer Tim Schnabel and guitarist Boris Stepanow form one of the most dynamic group of musicians ever assembled. They seem to draw off each other and interweave their individual talents into one of the best musical offerings of 2009 or any year for that matter.When music has the power to make you stop what you are doing and listen then you know you have something special. As the very metal opening to "Loss Of Hope" hit me I perked up the ears. When the vocals started, I knew this was no run of the mill offering. Then as the band swelled to their full magnitude, I was completely absorbed. Who are these guys? It is still amazing that music of this caliber can fly under the radar for this long. All you have to do is listen to the exchange between the keyboards and guitars during the extended instrumental section of this song and you will become a fan without a doubt. These guys are the real deal.I have been trying to think of what I can tell you are the highlights of this disc. Well it could be the terrific instrumental piece "Reawakening" with its powerful piano that sets a mood that the guitar plays off of so well, or it may be the enthralling "Generations" which is a roller coaster ride of sound. Then there is the edgy "Scum Of Society" which shows that they are as powerful lyrically as they are musically. Of course all this is setting you up for the epic "Spiral Of Pain" where they take you on a 30 minute quest for musical perfection. They leave nothing on the table as this vast work captures all that we prog metal lovers dream of. Intoxicating from beginning to end this is a classic piece of art. Where Michelangelo used many different mediums to project his art, AtmOsfear similarly uses many different musical approaches to convey their message, melancholy when called for, melodic where needed, brooding and harsh as the story calls for and totally mesmerizing throughout.This is a must have disc. For anyone who has a love of great music this is one that needs to be given a chance. You will not be disappointed." - Sea Of Tranquility
    $3.00
  • Second album from this Greek progressive metal band finds them with a new label and new vocalist. The foundation of the music remains the same - melodic, keyboard driven prog metal along the lines of Circus Maximus, Dream Theater, and Vanden Plas."Possibly indicative of the album title, Greek progressives Persona Non Grata hoped to 'up their game' with their sophomore release, Quantum Leap. Released in December, this fine work of progressive metal could easily be added to the best of 2011, right along side their peers Symphony X and Dream Theater.Quantum Leap, generally a heavy album, effortlessly blends classic heavy metal, notable in the melodies and traditional guitar work, with enough technical elements to offer progressive intrigue. By example, Redemption of Sins is indicative of this pattern, with it's notable rock/metal fusion finish. Alternatively, a song like Diversity remains heavy throughout, only to be brightened by synths and guitar. While not the best piece here, if you like your prog erring on the side of heaviness, it satisfies.Yet, more traditional melodic prog metal can be found from the start in Imaginative Mind and Lend Me a Hand. PnG stretches this motif and their skills on the longer 9 AM News. Captive and Grief, two of the finest songs here, push the somber subtlety of piano with vocals only erupt in soaring progressive power metal. Any doubts about the skills of new vocalist Aris Pirris are dispelled on these two numbers, also.Yet, after the fine arrangements, the singular most stunning characteristic of Quantum Leap is the bass work of new player, Chris Vogiatzis. Honestly, he nearly steals the show. His work is so fundamental and inspiring as to lift the entire PnG crew to greater heights. I would recommend buying the album for this alone.Fundamentally, however, Persona Non Grata's Quantum Leap is simply entertaining and intriguing progressive metal. Certainly, something you'll want to listen to several times over. Strongly recommended." - Danger Dog
    $14.00
  • "Brazilian power metal superstars Hibria proudly present their very first live concert album on both DVD & CD - a multimedia headbanging experience of the first order!Professionally filmed with multiple cameras at the Shinagawa Prince Stellar Ball in Tokyo, Japan - May 15th, 2011 - and covering all of the fan favorites including Steel Lord On Wheels, Bind Ride, Shoot Me Down and more!This is the final release with Hibria founding member, guitarist and producer Diego Kasper!"CD/DVD1. Blind Ride2. Nonconforming Minds3. Shoot Me Down4. Welcome To The Horror Show5. Living Under Ice6. Defying The Rules7. Millennium Quest*6. Blinded By Faith9. The Shelter s On Fire10. The Anger Inside11. The Skull Collectors12. Sea Of Revenge*13. I Feel No Bliss*14. Sight Of BlindnessENCORE15. Intro (Wings Of Wax)16. Tiger Punch17. Steel Lord On Wheels18. Rotten Souls*DVD only
    $15.00
  • "“Memories Of An Ancient Time”represents the second chapter of the trilogy start with "Countdown to Revenge" two years ago. HOLLOW HAZE has recently parted ways with singer Fabio Lione ( RHAPSODY, ANGRA, KAMELOT), But luckily the Italians, in person but shortly after it announced that Mats Leven (Y. MALMSTEEN, THERION, CANDLEMASS), Rick Altzi (MASTERPLAN, At VANCE) and Amanda Somerville took part in the recording sessions as very special guest singers. Their new and sixth album, that is set to be released on upcoming June’15 by Scarlet Records.This second saga will take you on an epic journey through the desert of Egypt, meeting the aliens, special mention to the amazing artwork realised by Stan W. Decker. This “Memories Of An Ancient Time” has been mastered by Mika Jussila (NIGHTWISH, APOCALYPTICA, CHILDREN OF BODOM) at Finnvox Studios in Helsinki, Finland, and as usually, Mika has done a good job, the production is magestic.“Memories Of An Ancient Time” is a mix of progressive meets power meets symphonic meets heavy metal, fast guitar riffs, neat double bass, magical and orchestral arrangements, big and beautiful choirs in the chorus, you can easily sing along all the songs, especially due to that the songs are relatively short compared to the first album of this trilogy.All the duets between Mats Leven & Amanda Somerville are all well done, Rick is mostly heard in the background, all the lead vocals are on the Mats‘s shoulders. As usual, Mats Leven has often proven, in the past, that he can carry an complete album. Whether by Y. MALMSTEEN or with THERION (even if i prefer his vocal performance with the guitar hero), he always convinced me with his charismatic voice, and he does this time again. HOLLOW HAZE has done the best choice with Mats for sure. Note the female choirs by Amanda & Claudia are just so sweet and touch your heart with their tender melodies. Everything else is fine, there is plenty of tunes (especially in the choruses), as know so well the Italian bands in this style.Its a bombastic album, but you need to hear the first part of the saga to understand, where the band wants to take you,  so you need also to buy the CD with the booklet included to jump into the lyrics and not download MP3! To finish his review, if you’re a fan of this style of metal, you still take pleasure to listen to this “Memories Of An Ancient Time” in a few years.This is already a classic! An emotional masterpiece!" - Metal Temple
    $15.00
  • "LANCER is a power/speed metal band based out of Arvika, Sweden. Following the release of a Demo and an EP, they present their second full-length released entitled “Second Storm,” containing nine tracks. “Running from the Tyrant” is the opening track. Right out of the gate there is a contagious energy imbedded in the swift pace of the song, and a big, full chorus. Isak’s vocal range is impressive, in the tradition of the bands that precede them in this genre.“Iwo Jima” is a nice war anthem, full of pleasing harmonies and big melodies, really drawing out the sound in grand fashion. Favoring the keep the guitar solo as an accent to the main melody, they do a good job of keeping that memorable long after the track ends. “Masters and Crowns” features that two guitar opening that is so common in the NWOBHM movement of the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. The sound here in this track really soars, shooting high into the sky. When Isak lets loose, he can really negotiate his voice in the upper ranges with ease, as in the opening scream of “Behind the Walls.” The hastened pace careens straight at you, with the double bass thundering forward like well-oiled machine. The fifth track “Aton” clocks in just under ten minutes. It has a slower and more deliberate rhythm, like any epic story. There is definitely a mystical quality to this piece and some noted influence from IRON MAIDEN in the guitar harmonies, particularly after the second chorus. There are really three distinct movements in the song if you will, and they connect very memorably. I really like the way the song ends in this massive crescendo of beauty and light. Returning to the swift rocking pace, “Children of the Storm” lays down a super melodic chorus and a thick bridge section chocked full of guitar harmonies. Key changes provide a nice element of surprise. “Eyes of the Liar” is another song where that mysterious, almost supernatural quality permeates the track, but does not overtake the main melody. “Fools Marches On” is the closing song and the second longest on the album. They close in grand fashion here, with a track that seems to encompass nearly every element that we have heard to date. LANCER’S power metal is all about feeling and emotion. It just makes you feel good, like you want to take up a quest to a distant land and leave everything behind. The musicianship and songwriting is strong and fresh, and the band’s synergy is driven by the very impressive vocals of Isak Stenvall." - Metal Temple
    $13.00
  • New mini-lp sleeve reissue of the classic second album from this great Italian trio. Although keyboards play a vital part of their sound, the instrumentation is pretty well balanced. These guys were able to compete with the big guns - Banco and PFM - they were that good. Highly recommended.
    $20.00
  • Expanded CD/DVD edition. The CD comes with 5 bonus tracks.  The DVD contains a 5.1 surround mix and a ton of documentary/interview footage.Without abandoning the sense of melody and dynamics that remain the Magenta trademark, Metamorphosis sees the band taking a darker, more intense path with powerful, sometimes disturbing subject matter."I think this album is going to surprise a lot of people," says keyboardist Rob Reed "It will challenge many people's preconceptions of what Magenta are, and what we are capable of musically. Most of it was written on guitar, so some of the material is heavier than before, whilst retaining most of the elements of the Magenta sound."The album also marks the band's return to long-form pieces of music, with two 20 minute-plus songs, and a new, richer sound with the addition of strings. "Watch out for some brilliant performances on the record." Reed says. "Christina Booth's vocals are just astonishing, Tim Robinson delivers a virtuoso performance on drums and Chris Fry has pushed the bar even higher than usual with some amazing lead guitar. I have no doubt that this is, by far, our finest album to date."Magenta was formed in 2001, quickly capturing the attention of progressive rock fans around the world with a sound influenced by the icons of the past. Over the years the band has performed at virtually every major progressive rock festival in the world including gigs at Rosfest, BajaProg, and Nearfest. Year after year, the band has received awards from various progressive rock publications. In 2007, the band won two awards from the esteemed British Classic Rock Society including Best Band and Best Female Singer.The album was mastered by Grammy winning engineer Bob Katz. To further enhance the package, Metamorphosis features startling artwork from the noted graphic design house Killustrations.
    $15.00
  • "The vast riches lying within the reach of Google have included a lot of bands I’ve discovered by typing long strings of words bookended by “metal” in an effort to root out underground music of varying sub-genres that I might enjoy. Forum posts often proved most fruitful, those splendid user-generated gifts of musical knowledge. One particular band I heard mentioned glowingly a few years back via a forum post was Serdce.They are a Minsk-based group and one whose 2004 album, Cyberly, was being billed as an unknown classic. I take comments like that with a pound of fucking salt. Yet it turned out to be true. So it gave me much pleasure that Blood Music worked with Islander here at NCS to premiere music from Serdce’s soon-to-be-released record, Timelessness. It was doubly nice that Heavy Blog Is Heavy began to post about them as well with yet another song premierel, because Serdce are a quirky progressive death metal band worth checking out — and worthy of that tag.I admit to feeling jarred when I first heard this album. It’s a big shift from their last record, 2009’s The Alchemy Of Harmony, a record I worship and regard as a masterpiece, although the changes make sense because they’ve been expanding toward a more prog-metal-focused sound with each release. As this was always a big part of their style, the shift away from calculating, mid-paced death metal into lighter Cynic-focused realms works phenomenally well. And it’s not as confined or as prog-by-numbers as you might think.he fusion side of this record isn’t a minor flirtation, like most of your average jazz-inflected metal dubbed progressive. In reality, it makes up the majority of the album’s sound and journey — and it’s a dense and dream-decorated journey at that. While the style on display in Timelessness is brilliant and multi-faceted to these ears, it may not be aggressive enough for the tastes of some people. For those in that camp, I urge you to examine their prior albums.That observation is not intended as an indictment or an implication that this new album is not as good as their past work — to the contrary, I would venture to say this is Serdce’s most eclectic and strongest album yet. I merely mean to say that it’s of a more airy and progressive nature and that not all metalheads may be open-minded enough to appreciate it.Serdce have been creating Meshuggah groove-gliding influenced death metal long before most of the pack who followed that lead, and they continue to do it better than most. But for those who are groove-averse, that’s far from the totality of what they have to offer. Throughout Timelessness you will hear a lot of piano playing and orchestral/carnival-esque synths, and in addition, the vocals are primarily sung this time around. Overall, the strong Cynic-vibe of the record comes not only from the riffing and fusion elements; the effusive, prominent, and exploratory bass playing brings that comparison to mind as well.Huge artistic shifts in a band’s sound remain a double-edged sword, usually causing long-time fans to quarrel for and against such transformations in equal measure. Serdce have skillfully navigated these tricky waters and come out the other side a totally different, yet no less intriguing group. Timelessness doesn’t last forever, yet it contains innumerable timelessly memorable moments within its titanic, fluid, multi-part songs. Jump on the bandwagon or crawl in the dust – Timelessness will find an interested and eager audience either way — though I urge you to give it a chance and get on board." - No Clean Singing
    $16.00
  • "Germany's Brainstorm turned the corner from traditional Teutonic power metal with 2008's Downburst, by offer a little more intrigue in their musical compositions. Yet, the band hasn't veered from mainstream melodic heavy metal at any time. This year's On the Spur of the Moment continues the current path with some subtle nuances.While still melodic, the songs seem heavier, maybe even darker, than previous material. Nevertheless, from chord structure to vocal arrangements, melody and harmony remain. Notable is the opener Below the Line, No Saint No Sinner, and the impressive In These Walls. Additionally, many songs have a strong metal-rock groove that adds to their accessibility: check out Temple of Stone, A Life on Hold, or No Saint No Sinner. One surprising feature is the nature of the guitar solos. Many are both traditional and fiery as on A Life on Hold, Still Insane, and Temple of Stone. Then, sometimes they're muted as on In the Blink of an Eye and No Saint No Sinner. Considering the breadth and depth of the guitarists' skill, I'm not getting this at all. Conversely, there are some impressive performances by individual members: most significant is Dieter Bernert's drum work on Temple of Stone and My Own Hell.Characteristic of a talented and proven band, Brainstorm's On the Spur of the Moment is consistent and entertaining material. Definitive, visionary or breaking new ground? Perhaps not. But fans of traditional melodic heavy and power metal should be pleased. Recommended." - Dangerdog.com
    $15.00
  • Remastered edition with two bonus tracks."Searching for a way to retool their sound, Judas Priest attempted to accentuate their melodic side on Turbo by incorporating synthesizers and '80s pop-metal stylings ("Wild Nights, Hot & Crazy Days" sounds more like Poison, albeit with synths). The restrained songcraft sometimes pays dividends, especially on the synth-driven leadoff track, "Turbo Lover," easily the best song on the record and a successful reimagining of the Priest formula. But often, the band simply sounds directionless, unsure of exactly which path to accessibility it should follow; moreover, the synth-guitar backing and overly polished production give the album an oddly mechanized, processed feel. It certainly doesn't help most of the material, which is often at least competent but rarely inspired enough to make much of an impression. That's unfortunate because Turbo's best moments indicate that with a clearer focus, the album could have been a creative success; however, it's overall Judas Priest's weakest release since Rocka Rolla." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • New solo album from Stratovarius guitarist. Tolkki doesn't exactly give you any suprises - it's exactly what you expect: neoclassical laced symphonic speed metal. Guest vocals provided by Michael Kiske (ex-Helloween) and Sharon Den Adel (Within Temptation).
    $16.00
  • New CD/DVD edition is considered by Mr. Fripp to be quite a revelation due to the remix of Steven Wilson. The standard CD has a new stereo mix of the album as well as 3 bonus tracks. The DVD features a 5.1 remix of the album plus hi-resolution stereo mixes of the bonus tracks. This was always the oddball album in the King Crimson canon - equal parts jazz to rock. Jon Anderson's guest vocal appearance on "Prince Rupert's Lament" still induces chills. Highly recommended.
    $22.00