Reviewed by Nuno on 11 Dec 2001
What to expect from Rhapsody’s new release?
Well, while we wait for their coming back in 2002 with a new album, these Italian warriors of Symphonic Hollywood Metal decided to grow water in their fans mouths and put out a mini(?) album of 42 minutes…
So what all we have to do is sit quietly, put the headphones and head for another rollercoaster ride!
This time we have some novelties in their musicality. OK, don’t get anxious, the epic festival of sounds is still here , the majestic guitar and keyboard solos are too, so what’s different you may ask!? Well, Fabio Leone’s golden voice gets to demonstrate new qualities reaching lower tones, the music seems sometimes to get a little slower, for the most symphonic parts and the overall sound gets even wider and more carefully layered then before.
Queen of Dark Horizons, with its nearly 14 minutes, is a new dimension to this bands horizon. It explores features they didn’t try before. It has a real progressive feeling on it because of the middle section where the direction changes and the band evolves in soloing showdown, but this feeling prevails throughout the album.
Elnor’s Magic Valley is a surprising Celtic folk music, like being played in some obscure Irish pub, a real 2 minute treat.
But forget the highlights of the album, for they are the album itself! OK, just for a little tease I can add that The Wizard’s last Rhymes is based on Antonin Dvorák’s classic piece New World Symphony…
Many critic voices have been raising about the naïf context of the band lyrics and them presenting a mystic ancient world full of dragons and warriors, but if you forget this and just enjoy the enlightened happiness of the music, you will do better and certainly feel rewarded.
The good thing about this album is that maintains the particularities that made this band a real success in the metal circles while experiencing some new approaches. But don’t expect all new, the sound remains within the realms that they created with their 3 prior albums, only getting deeper, more well cared and getting even better production.
So, what to expect from Rhapsody’s new release?
Expect a fast driving force running through your ears into your flowing blood. Expect a highly symphonic galloping through metal fields, catching you by hand and taking you along. Expect huge choruses wonderfully enriching the concept. Expect an epic 42-minute voyage, flying in dragon’s wings. Expect one of the best power/progressive metal releases of the year!