Posts Tagged ‘Rhapsody of Fire’

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Rhapsody Of Fire – The Cold Embrace Of Fear

September 9, 2010

Oh shit, it’s another RoF concept EP. It’s got weird words with too many hypens in the titles, spoken word passages and stuff about secrets, angels and all the delightful tat we’ve come to expect. It’s a story divided into seven parts, but I’ll be damned if I know what’s going on. “It’s an avalaaaaanche!” cries some poor bastard as he’s crushed by something big and heavy. Probably an avalanche.

I’m not really going to waste bandwith telling you what RoF are all about, because if you’ve read my review of Frozen Tears… it’s essentially more of the same, and sounds like they ran out of time on the album. The centre piece track is a fifteen minute behemoth of a track which is nothing short of spectacular, a rare occasion where RoF outdo themselves, as well as the other two songs on the EP.

Yes, I said two. Earlier I said it’s seven parts, but RoF have decided than rather to release a three track CD, they’ve slapped four spoken word parts with airy keyboards  that you’ll never listen to again. Thanks guys, just what I always wanted, more forgettable shit on my hard drive. Way to ruin a killer EP.

8/10 – For the music

3/10 – For the other bullshit

Twaddlefish

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Rhapsody of Fire – The Frozen Tears of Angels

June 23, 2010

Christopher Lee just started talking. I need to change my trousers. He did a pretty grand job on Symphony of Enchanted Lands Pt. 2, possibly the gayest name ever for a metal album, and despite some killer artwork, was mostly Luca Turilli’s brother playing weird folk instruments and not a lot of metal. I have no idea about the follow up, but the day I pay for another RoF album is the day I pull my own toenails out.

Thankfully, TFToA is a proper power metal album. The huge epic sound that we’ve to know (and perhaps, love) of RoF is still ever present and as an experience TFToA is a great record. Rhapsody of Fire have never really into the massive choruses of Eeeeeeeemarld Svoooord times for a while now, so there’s not a lot here to please your avid stadium killer fanatic. It’s also as shreddy a paper shredder shredding a box of Shreddies, so the plank spankers will be kept exceedingly happy. It’s quite an improvement back from the days when it was much more focused on the power, and I hate the term ‘Hollywood metal’, but RoF seem to be edging ever closer to it; we’d probably have to have our low jaws surgically repaired if they’d been recruited to do the Lord of the Rings soundtrack. However, if you don’t even have a passing interest in power metal avoid this like the plague, you will hate

I was never the biggest fan of the Italian’s earlier work, all the folk nonsense got a little bit twee and despite some really cool folk songs, it was very hard to take it seriously as part of their discography and less like an afterthought because they had twenty minutes of studio time left. I’m happy to say that TFToA is more about dragons than ever and less about fondling other men in leather jerkins.

6/10

Twaddlefish
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Rhapsody of Fire: An Inconvenient Truth

April 29, 2010

Reviewing Rhapsody of Fire’s latest album, “The Frozen Tears of Angels“, has brought an uncomfortable truth to light. It is one that has been with me for a while, but, like a repressfully married gay man, I simply denied my true feelings and just tried to live ignoring them, letting them eat away inside: I actually really like this band….

Rhapsody of Fire: A collection of experimental noses and asymmetrical faces.

The quandary is this: while the band are no doubt an amalgamation of almost everything that could ever be wrong with a metal band, being power metal, nerdy as hell, obsessed with absurd role playing fantasies and dressing as such, casting themselves as swashbuckling heros in every video with no sense of irony, and just general faggy behaviour, they undoubtably can write some really really good songs! Hence the way that almost everyone who comes into contact with them will instantly adopt the familiar position of holding them at arm’s length, and claiming “irony”. You sit in a room with friends, play the song, and everyone instantly launches into “hey, it’s that gay Italian power metal band, hahaha, what douchelords, you seen the video for Unholy Warcry? I’m going to ironically play air guitar and sing along, haha, get it? cos I’m way too cool for this in real life!”, and then halfway into the song, everyone suddenly realises that they’re enjoying it just a little too much, and the atmosphere suddenly becomes akin to being involved in recreational group sex, and having accidentally “crossed swords”. I have a plaid clad hipster friend who normally only listens to obscure experimental jazz/indie/electro bands in the HRO realm of the woods, and on holiday with him once even he couldn’t stop playing them. For a hipster, liking power metal is the subcultural equivalent of goosestepping across the Polish border with a sharpie permanent marker Hitler tashe playing “Ride of the Valkyries” on a ghetto blaster while denouncing healthcare for starving orphans with cancer to redirect the funds towards the clubbing of baby seals. You just don’t do it.

My first ever experience with the band: While it may be laugh out loud ridiculous, it’s also a pretty well produced, well written piece of music, if you can get past the fact that it’s unashamed power metal. I find the drummer’s pained Steven Seagal-esque expressions particularly amusing, as well as, ya know, everything else

Most of the time, I find that power metal is as well as being incredibly pretentious, elitist, and generally fat and annoying, also containing just very basic songs, written around a sub par “trying too hard to be epic” chorus, with everything playing at an incredibly basic level, albeit one that sounds kind of impressive if you have no idea about music. Basic timing, moderate double bass, and some mediocre shredding up and down scales. This is probably why it seems to attract stupid ugly girls and annoying dorks with non musical backgrounds yet still proclaim themselves “an expert on the genre, and all things metal really”. I have spent the last few years irl trolling these people relentlessly whenever the opportunity presents itself, making fun of their costumes, stealing their chicks, and highlighting that their leather jacket isn’t fooling anyone, and that despite your “true metal warrior” persona, you’re still gonna get out partied and have your ass handed to you by a “stupid scene faggot”.

However, while Rhapsody of Fire are still, somehow, guilty of all this, they just manage to do it really well. There’s not really any other way to say it, but they are awesome at writing really terrible songs.

A rare genuine case of “so bad it’s good”

As well as all this, Rhapsody actually seem to be able to pull off what most power metal bands always try so hard but fail to do, which is be genuinely “epic” and even moderately inspiring. Of course, it’s incredibly easy to gutter snipe anything from a sedatory position at a keyboard, when everyone is at their most critical and snarky, but out in the real world, when you’re actually doin stuff, music takes on its own meaning. For some reason, Rhapsody of Fire make great, really inspiring cycle music.

They have essentially “done” power metal, and if anyone does it better, let me know.

Kaledon: The budget Rhapsody of Fire?

Also, the fact that as well as just singing about lord of the rings, they went the whole hog and pretty much kidnapped Christopher “Saruman the white” Lee, is pretty impressive.

Eyelicker

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Rhapsody Of Fire – The Frozen Tears of Angels

April 26, 2010

Label: Nuclear Blast, home of camp euro power metal

With Sonata Arctica toned down into sensibility and mediocrity, and Dragonforce now largely forgotten having peaked upon being featured on guitar hero 3, devoured whole by mainstream teenage neckbeards, the modern power metal scene needs something of a new rediculous extremity to come along and be laughed at with their long winded lyrics about “eternity”, “flames”, “kingdoms” and Lord Of The Rings. Enter this quite juicy new lol-fest of a Rhapsody Album.

As a silly as hell power metal album, it definately dosn’t dissapoint! Good old Christopher Lee is back, giving us a friendly welcoming intro with a pat on the back and some burble about necron, before the band launch into epic songs about power metal stuff. Although I probably wouldn’t see them (power metal fans are the worst), I am quite fond of Rhapsody, and there has to be something said of their ability to make songs that are both musically enjoyable and hilarious at the same time. You can enjoy the straightforward songwriting with all it’s guitar widdling and falsetto vocals which can genuinely entertain in a mock inspirational kind of way, while also giggleing as you would at that fat autistic kid with a mullet practicing sword moves.

Ultimately, its more of Rhapsody doing their thing, with zero grandiose control and subtlety, providing another entertaining extreme power metal album. You know the deal. Not really new, but they did include a paticularly funny moment with a really ghey folk metal song (Danza Di Fuoco E Ghiaccio), that single handedly trumps anything that Fintroll, Turisas, or any of those Scandinavian berks have done. Oh Euros!

8/10 (probably not for the reasons intended, c’mon, as gay as it is, it’s entertaining!)

Eyelicker (maybe they should just fucking get it over with and make Christopher Lee a band member)

Now go and laugh at the fat ninja mullet kid. It’s best at the end when he starts breathing really heavily and shouting “Dragon Twister!” and “Bull Charge!” You think he digs Rhapsody’s inspirational lyrics about swordplay?

Now here’s my personal favorite from them. They should make a film which is just 3 hours of this….