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SYMPHONY OF ENCHANTED LANDS

Rhapsody (of Fire)

Progressive Metal


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Rhapsody (of Fire) Symphony Of Enchanted Lands album cover
3.67 | 100 ratings | 16 reviews | 36% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 1998

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Epicus Furor (1:14)
2. Emerald Sword (4:20)
3. Wisdom Of The Kings (4:28)
4. Heroes Of The Lost Valley (2:04)
5. Eternal Glory (7:29)
6. Beyond The Gates of Infinity (7:23)
7. Wings Of Destiny (4:28)
8. The Dark Tower Of Abyss (6:46)
9. Riding the Winds Of Eternity (4:13)
10. Symphony Of Enchanted Lands (13:16)

Total Time: 55:46

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Luca Turilli / guitars
- Alex Staropoli / keyboards
- Daniele Carbonera / drums
- Fabio Lione / vocals
- Alessandro Lotta / bass
- Constanze Vaniyne / baroque vocals (10)
- Erik Steenbock / marching drums
- Manuel Staropoli / baroque recorder and oboe
- S?ren Leupold / baroque lute
- Matthias Brommann / lead violin
- Claas Harders / viola de gamba
- Sascha Paeth / balalaika, acoustic guitars, and mandolin
- Sir Jay Lansford / narrator

+ Russian Choirs by The Original Don Kosaken
+ Sacred Choirs by Helmstedter Kammerchor
+ Andreas Lamben / conductor
+ Choirs by Thomas Rettke, Robert Hunecke, Miro, Ricky Rizzo, Cinzia Rizzo, Tatiana Bloch, Davide Calabrese, Michele Mayer, Guiland Tarlon, Cristiano Adacher, Manuel Staropoli, Fabio Leon, Alex Starpoli, and Luca Turilli
+ Strings ensemble:
- Ulrike Wildenhof, Almut Schlicker, Stefanie Holk, Friedrike Bauer, Matthias Brommann / violins
- Marie-Theres Strumpf, Cosima Bergk, Jan Larsen / violas
- Hagen Kuhr / cello
- Andr? Neygenfind / contra bass
- Stefan Horz / cembald

Releases information

CD Limb Music Products #LMP 9810 007

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to SouthSideoftheSky for the last updates
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RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Symphony Of Enchanted Lands ratings distribution


3.67
(100 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(36%)
36%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(35%)
35%
Good, but non-essential (18%)
18%
Collectors/fans only (8%)
8%
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)
3%

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Symphony Of Enchanted Lands reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I think the first three albums of this band combined together is a TRILOGY masterpiece. They are: "Legendary Tales", "Symphony of Enchanted Lands" and "Dawn of Victory". I could hardly define which one is the best as all of them are great albums. This album continues the story of the Algalord Chronicles, a fantasy epic created by the band. As I put in my review of "Dawn of Victory" album, the music of this band is not purely a power metal sub-genre (the kind of music pioneered by Germany's HELLOWEEN) but it has a considerable prog elements (the use of orchestra / string arrangements, varieties of shifting tempos PLUS. Well . I never heard the kind of mixture of Rhapsody's music before).

I purchased the CD of this album after I was extremely satisfied with the third album "Dawn of Victory" that represented my first introduction to the band (that I never heard the name before). Again, I was amazed with the music offered by the band: fantastic blend of metal and symphonic orchestra. Well, honestly, first listening I got problems with "dug-u-dug-u-dug" double bass drum style which sound typical to any metal music. But once I got used to it, it worked definitely fine with my ears. For those of you who love classic prog rock like Genesis, Yes, King Crimson of ELP, you may find it difficult to accept the tagline tempo of this kind of music. But, when you pass this test .. BOOM! It's gonna blow you man ...!!! This is the kind of music you'd like to listen to in order to elevate your emotion. Believe me!

As usual, this album is opened with orchestral arrangement "Epicus Furor" that really set the overall tone of the album. It's stunning opening and you should turn your power amps volume high to reach ultimate satisfaction. It flows to higher tempo with the second track "Emerald Sword". This track is really uplifting, showing a great mixture of power metal and excellent string ensembles music. If you like violin / cello instrument in rock, you will definitely like this song. The vocal part by Fabio Lione is great, accompanied by a choirs group that accentuate the song and bring the music to the ultimate power of progressive metal. I personally like the solo guitar combined with violin / cello sounds during the interlude section. It's excellent!

The third track "Wisdom Of The Kings" is opened with nice melody instrumental classical music followed with upbeat metal music and great vocal. Yes, you are ready to the war. It's a kind of music for war, I think. The addition of orchestration in between melody has enriched the music. The interlude part with lead guitar solo is stunning and uplifting.

"Heroes Of The Lost Valley" is a short track with heavy classical music element, great clavinet melody and pan pipe (or sort of it). This track, I think, is designed to create a motivational atmosphere for warriors going to the war field. This serves to be true as the narration says clearly:

"Yes, mighty warrior... what you hear now are the suffering voices of all the heroes that crossed these lands before you. They ended their quest tragically but their thirst for victory is still alive and breathes through these ancient rocks corroded by the fury of the wind. Their pride now rides with you..."

. it continues wonderfully to the next track where the war is really started: "Eternal Glory". WOW ..!!!! What a great orchestration opening!!! It's so stunning! I don't care whether you can accept metal music or not but this opening orchestration is damn EXCELLENT!! (I'm not being generous .. but .. this is true story, no exaggeration at all, believe me .). REALLY GREAT music! The combination of pan pipe and clavinet sounds at the end of this track really blow me! Well ..friends, I'm not gonna review track by track but believe me the rest of tracks are all wonderful. And I think . you have to purchase the CD. You won't regret it! The concluding epic "Symphony of Enchanted Lands" is also top class! Honestly, I keep admiring the masterminds of this album: Luca Turili (guitar), Alex Staropoli (keyboards and orchestration) plus brilliant producers: Sascha Paeth and Miro. Great job, gentlemen! - Gatot Widayanto, Indonesia.

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#32226) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, August 12, 2004

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars The good, the bad, and the Rhapsody

Rhapsody's second album is nothing more (or indeed less!) than a straight continuation of their first. If like me, you enjoyed the completely over the top pomposity of the first album "Legendary tales", then you are in for a further treat here. "Symphony of enchanted lands" continues the telling of "THE CHRONICLES OF ALGALORD - The Emerald Sword Saga", a story steeped in mythology, heroic battles, and epic fantasy. By this time, we have a hero whose quest we follow as he tries to find the hidden keys which will unlock the Ivory Gates. Somewhere behind these gates is an Emerald sword which will help our hero to restore peace and harmony to the land. While all this is going on, the combined forces of the good guys are fighting an ongoing war against evil forces.

The Chronicles story, and indeed all the lyrics, come from the imaginative and fertile mind of guitarist Lucca Turilli. Had he not been blessed with such musical talent, he would surely have found success as an author. Turilli denies any influence from the "Lord of the rings" books, claiming that he seldom reads. He does however cite Hollywood movies as a major influence, hence the "Epic Hollywood symphonic metal" tag.

The songs on these "Chronicles series" albums do not so much tell the story, as paint pictures to accompany it. While the music superbly reflects the atmosphere of the tale, the rather phonetic delivery of the lyrics makes reference to the story and the lyric sheet essential in order to enjoy the full experience. The tale alone is worth the price of admission!

After the brief operatic opening of "Epicus Furor" we segue straight into the truly magnificent "Emerald sword". This track demands to be played with the volume at eleven, the double speed drums driving incessantly behind one of the most remarkable pieces of symphonic prog metal I have heard. It's the magnificently infectious choruses which grab you here as the all male choir run up and down the scales in true macho fashion. I defy anyone not to sing along at the top of your voice while making suitable arm waving gestures!

The album has its fair share of similar tracks ("Wisdom of the kings", "Riding the winds of eternity", "Eternal glory" etc,), all of which have impossibly fast guitar work, layers of synthesisers, bombastic orchestras and choirs, and soaring choruses. There are however other more diverse pieces. "Heroes of the lost valley" has a folky, medieval feel, and "Wings of destiny" is a delicate ballad, with soft vocals.

Several of the tracks have reasonably complex structures. "Eternal glory" moves from a brief narrated opening through trumpet sounding synths and snare drums to double speed bass drums, then a soaring chorus leading to a violin backed soft vocal section, and a symphonic conclusion. "Beyond the gates of infinity" has echoes of Dream Theater with constant time changes, and a superb synth solo.

The album closes with the epic 13 minute title track. Here the band bring together all their many influences as they move through soft passages, symphonic orchestration, folk music, and of course metallic guitar riffs. This is by far the band's more ambitious track to date and while they largely pull it off, for all its length it is not the best track on the album.

In all, Symphony of enchanted lands" is a highly polished and accomplished album. It finds the band pushing even further into their own unique territory, with stunning combinations of prog metal and symphonic orchestration. Highly recommended.

The story continues on Rhapsody's third album, "Dawn of victory".

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#32229) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, June 02, 2005

Review by erik neuteboom
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars J.S. Bach, Paganini and Yngwie Malmsteen are guitarplayer Luca Turilli and keyboardplayer Alex Staropoli their favorites so it's no surprise that Rhapsody their music is a blend of classical and metal. After the acclaimed demo tape Land Of Immortals the band released their debut CD entitled Legendary Tales in 1997. On this successor entitled Symphony Of Enchanted Lands (1998) Rhapsody has invited a Russian choir and made use of instruments like the hobo, lute, violin, harpsichord, acoustic guitars, mandoline and the ethnic Russian balalaika. The result is a dynamic and varied mix of classical, symphonic and heavy metal, at some moments very impressive and exciting! My highlights are Eternal Glory (symphonic metal along mellow parts with flute and harpsichord), the compelling ballad Wings Of Destiny (great tension between keyboards and vocals), Riding The Winds Of Destiny (sparkling, often orchestral keyboards, violin and fiery speed metal interludes) and my favorite The Dark Tower Of Abyss, to me this composition sounds like "Vivaldi meets Savatage" featuring a swirling violin-section, biting guitar and powerful drums. Because I don't like heavy metal and prog metal, I have problems with listening to this album when the focus is too much on these categories. But when there is a balance between classical, symphonic and heavy metal, Rhapsody succeeds to generate a lot of excitement to me! My rating: 3,5 stars.

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Send comments to erik neuteboom (BETA) | Report this review (#155148) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Review by b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Rhapsody second album is a continuation of the first album. The album is like you combine Malmsteen, Bach and some Stratovarius here and there. Symphony of enchanted lands continues the telling of The chrolnicles of Algalord - The Emerald Sword Saga.The music here is with fast/slow guitar work, layers of synthesisers, bombastic orchestras and choirs, just listen to Wisdom Of The Kings Symphony Of Enchanted Lands the best pieces from here. What more if you like bands mention above this can give you some pleasure, if you don't like fast guitars or medieval instrumentation here and there stay away. 3 stars for this one, and i think their best so far. Anyway from this one they repeat the same elements to the newer albums, no big difference between them.

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Send comments to b_olariu (BETA) | Report this review (#158170) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The second album from Rhapsody is my favorite from this band. Rhapsody continues the style they started on their debut Legendary Tales. This means bombastic orchestral driven power metal with fantasy/ Fairytale lyrics. I hold Legendary Tales in high regard but Symphony of Enchanted Lands is just a notch better.

Epicus Furor starts the album with a bombastic classical arrangement, itīs very beautiful and when it seques into Emerald Sword itīs so powerful. Iīm always blown back in my seat when the doubel bass drums kick in on Emerald Sword. Itīs just so great and powerful. The epic and powerful playing continues throughout the album even though it gets a bit too cheesy for me on a song like Wings of Destiny. But on the other hand youīll have to accept at least a bit of cheese to listen to power metal. I have always listened to this style with an ironic distance. Rhapsody are just so great that I canīt help being faschinated and entranced by them. My favorite tracks besides the aforementioned are Wisdom Of The Kings, Eternal Glory with itīs almost Star Wars like classical intro theme and The Dark Tower Of Abyss which is the most dark and heavy song here.

The musicians playing on Symphony of Enchanted Lands needs to be mentioned as they are all outstanding. Fabio Lioneīs vocal delivery is strong and commanding, but he can also sound very emotional ( thatīs when it gets a bit too cheesy for me). The two composers Luca Turilli and Alex Staropoli are outstanding musicians. First of all for the ability to compose this music but secondly also for being virtosos on their instruments. I especially enjoy Luca Turilliīs signature sweeping on his guitar, really nice stuff. The drums and bass are also very tight. There are also some folky elements like flute and violin in some of the songs.

The production is otherworldly if you ask me. This is the way metal should be produced. Everything is clear in the soundscape and the production is very metallic and cold. Not all the organic sounding vintage keyboards here. Those belong in another genre, not in power metal. I really like the drum sound too, itīs very powerful.

This album is very recommendable if you like power metal. Normal progressive metal heads might not find this to their liking. Itīs very much an aquired taste if you like this genre. I think this album is worth 4 big stars.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#162380) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, February 22, 2008

Review by Conor Fynes
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 'Symphony Of Enchanted Lands' - Rhapsody (Of Fire) (7/10)

The band Rhapsody (Of Fire) is known by metalheads and progheads alike to be a band you either love or despise. Without even listening to the music, I can guarantee that there will be an echelon of critics that will automatically blacklist 'Symphony Of Enchanted Lands' and any other power metal and list it off as 'idiot's metal.' While I can certainly relate that the emphasis on Tolkien fantasy can be a bit bothersome at times (especially when it's not Lord Of The Rings, but a cheap, thinly strung spin-off world) the music found here certainly lives up to it's name. There is much of a symphonic nature here, and there are times when one might not even be sure whether he is listening to metal, or classical music.

Keeping that in mind, it's best to treat the lyrical content and concept of the band and the band's music as two separate entities. I've never been one to follow Rhapsody's storylines, but whatever it may be, it does seem to give the music great opportunity to explore a wide range of emotions.

After a brief but complex classical introduction, the band breaks into the most catchy and infectious track 'Symphony' has to offer. 'Emerald Sword' is a very good introduction to what the band is all about; that is strong melodies, rapidfire guitar work and classically influenced riffage.

Onward, there are some slower power ballads, some more typical power metal tracks, and then... possibly the worst narration I've ever heard?

It's a real shame when an album's largest flaw is something that so simply could have been avoided. The narration (while typically meant to advance a story and provide respite) is almost painful to listen through. It almost seems like it's mocking both the band and the genre of music. the narrator sounds like the most stereotypical Dungeons & Dragons player, who forgot to take out his retainer before speaking and recording his voice. I'm not trying to overcritical, but theres a point where the cheesiness makes it a mockery of itself.

The second half of the album is certainly the better half. It's much more musically complex, and the catchy four minute tracks are exchanged for longer beasts with some mindblowing instrumentation. 'The Dark Tower Of Abyss' ends up being the highlight, with some suprisingly progressive and offbeat sections, and a beautiful classical buildup that sounds like it was written by Bach himself!

While the epic finale takes a bit of time to grow on the listener, it builds up very pleasantly for an epic finish to an epic album. 'Symphony Of Enchanted Lands' is a classic album by power metal standards, and if it weren't for comedy-bad vocals, it would be great all around. Recommended to fans of progressive metal who want a brand of metal a bit different from the typical Dream Theater sound. Four stars.

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Send comments to Conor Fynes (BETA) | Report this review (#254670) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, December 07, 2009

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
3 stars Some more legendary tales

After the superb and highly original debut album, Legendary Tales, things started to go wrong already with this follow up - but only slightly so, this is still a good album similar in style to the first one. I do feel though that Symphony of Enchanted Lands is more symphonic in the negative sense of being more pompous and bombastic. They did indeed adopt a somewhat bigger sound with this album, probably as a result of having a larger budget, but it is not adding anything valuable to the music if you ask me. I very much liked the fact that they used a smaller string ensemble (violin, viola and cello) on the debut instead of a full-blown orchestra.

Also the addition of a few spoken word passages (of which the debut was thankfully free) makes this album cheesier in comparison. The storyline is indeed very cheesy and it is not wise of them to draw more attention to it than absolutely necessary! Yet another thing that makes the present album less effective is the prolonged running time. The extra ten minutes or so compared to the debut makes the impact of Symphony of Enchanted Lands less powerful to me. By the end of the album I start to feel that I have heard everything the band has to offer.

Some of the features that I liked very much about the debut are still here though even if to a slightly lesser degree; the folky and medieval influences and the Yngwie Malmsteen's Rising Force-influenced guitar and keyboard play. I personally enjoy the Folk and Neo-Classical Metal aspects of the band much more than the Power Metal aspects (even if I don't mind a bit of progressive Power Metal). Once again both the instrumental and vocal talents and the compositional skills are strong and most of the songs are very enjoyable.

To sum up. This is a good album that is both different from and similar to the debut. In those aspects that it is different it appeals to me less and in those aspect in which it is similar it lacks the novelty of the debut and thus adds little than just more of the same.

I strongly recommend to start with the great debut (and that is all the Rhapsody most people will need, really)

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Send comments to SouthSideoftheSky (BETA) | Report this review (#439493) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Symphony of Enchanted Lands sees Rhapsody refine and perfect the formula established on Legendary Tales. The classical instrumentation gets to be a little more prominent this time, especially on the epic title track, and we get a bit more narration here and there to help out those who want to follow the story, but otherwise it's essentially more of the same, with just enough variation and musical development to save the album from feeling redundant or unnecessary. If you're going to do Dungeons & Dragons metal, you may as well go completely over the top with it, and Rhapsody pull this off in fine form.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#1019597) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, August 16, 2013

Latest members reviews

4 stars Symphony of Enchanted Lands' follows on from 'Legendary Tales' in its revelation of 'The Chronicles of Algalord'. The storyline of the album is best summarized by these opening sentences from the cover slip; "What is told between these pages destined to memories was written by the wise old ha ... (read more)

Report this review (#97028) | Posted by Ktrout | Friday, November 03, 2006 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Why this album is listed here remains a mistery for me. It's just the usual happy (power) metal, yeah, the singer has a lot of range, the instrumental part is also fast and has some good points... but hell, this is not progressive at all! Just listen to the first two tracks... A catchy riff and ... (read more)

Report this review (#84687) | Posted by laynor | Monday, July 24, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is NOT a progressive rock album, but there's some progressive parts. Even I don't count this album in the progressive music, it's not poor album. Italian way to express english is kind of ridiculous, but Lione's voice is majestic. Turilli is very talented guitarist and his classical parts is ... (read more)

Report this review (#75431) | Posted by Toomio | Wednesday, April 19, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Much people say, this is not a prog materpiece because is heavy metal, well is true but is better that much prog albums; why? because the songs are a amazing combination of heavy metal, progresive rock and baroque music (like Vivaldi) with the unique touch of Rhapsody. Epicus Furor: A great ... (read more)

Report this review (#37260) | Posted by | Wednesday, June 22, 2005 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I agreed with freehenkīs review: this album is not progressive but surely power symphonic metal with the repetitive, fast and boring (for my taste) drums in several tracks. Some tracks with with classical instruments, however this is not enough to be a prog band. Perhaps it deserves a three t ... (read more)

Report this review (#32230) | Posted by Asiostygius | Thursday, June 02, 2005 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Do not wasted your time listening to this album. There's no prog element at all. It's just a power metal album. Pure POWER METAL polished with orchestration and operatic choir and so on and so on... If you looking for the REAL symphonic power metal band (and also the BEST!), just listen to NIG ... (read more)

Report this review (#32221) | Posted by | Monday, August 30, 2004 | Review Permanlink

3 stars A nice record that i actually don't know how it make it here, anyway... a nice virtuoso album featuring strong medieval influences, but is no more impresive or original than any of the "KEEPER'S OF THE SEVEN KEYS" albums from HELLOWEEN (which happen to be a main influence). To be honest, this ... (read more)

Report this review (#32220) | Posted by arqwave | Tuesday, August 17, 2004 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Majestic LP of symphonic metal which perfectly unites metallic cavalcades, inspired keyboards and epic orchestral parts. This collection of anthems ( "emerald sword", "eternal glory",... ) even includes a quite well done ballad contrary to others Rhapsody's LP. Some lively, conquering and ... (read more)

Report this review (#32224) | Posted by | Monday, August 02, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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