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Rhapsody (of Fire) - Legendary Tales CD (album) cover

LEGENDARY TALES

Rhapsody (of Fire)

 

Progressive Metal

3.73 | 130 ratings

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ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars Does anybody know if these guys are supposed to be a serious band? I’m assuming they are not.

I found this in the overstock bin of a used record store recently, and for $3 USD figured I couldn’t go wrong. This is some of the funniest metal music I’ve ever heard! I would have thought this was another Spinal Tap inspiration, except this album came out at least a decade after Spinal Tap, so maybe the inspiration was the other way around. No matter, the over-the-top lyrics here and some of the grossly pretentious arrangements would cause me to completely dismiss these guys were it not for the fact that most of them appear to actually be pretty good musicians. Drummer Daniele Carbonera especially seems to have a real knack for fast-paced, varied tempos that keep the tracks moving along well, except for a couple like “Forest of Unicorns” which take a bit of a folksy turn.

Singer Fabio Lione sounds like a Latin Ronnie James Dio but without the lower end of a vocal register. Pretty good metal voice actually, and he carries a tune very well.

As near as I can tell the overall ‘theme’ of the album, if there actually is supposed to be one, is a sort of loosely-formed fantasy medieval tale, or maybe more like a screenplay perhaps. Pretty weird I must say.

I really don’t know anything about these guys beyond what’s in the album liner, and since this appears to be a CD reprint there isn’t much. The album is heavy with string arrangements – several violins/violas it sounds like, and mandolin and flute/recorder on a couple of the slower tracks, but mostly this is speed metal with a very light gothic lilt to it and plenty of fast strings, not unlike Stream of Passion or Nightwish, but without the dominant operatic female singer (although there are some female vocals here).

A couple songs like “Lord of the Thunder” have some sporadic tempo changes, mostly in the form of short docile passages surrounded by thunderous metal shredding with string arrangements, while others like “Flames of Revenge” just hit the floor running and don’t let up.

Like I said, I’m not sure these guys are meant to be taken seriously, and if they are then they take themselves way too seriously. But as a speed metal album the guitars are pretty good for the most part, the main male vocalist does a pretty good job of holding a note and not overpowering the instruments, and the orchestral string arrangements definitely add an element of complexity to the music that make it a step or so above your everyday mindless metal. So three stars for talent and effort, and here’s hoping these guys aren’t laughing at any of us who are looking at a lemon pie and praising it as fine art.

peace

ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |

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