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Therion - Vovin CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.10 | 182 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Therion is not just another Swedish Metal band, in fact their music has evolved into something so much more elaborate than their early death metal roots, into this astral mix of classical music and opera metal that it is today.

Yngwie Malmsteen was perhaps one of the first classically trained musician to actually mix classical music with heavy metal in the early 80's. This symphony/metal approach has been attempted by many others over the years, though in my view only a few have been very successful at it, namely: Therion, Adagio, Symphony X, Blind Guardian, Rhapsody, Nightwish, Stratovarius and Within Temptation.

To the fans of the genre, Therion's mid-period material since the bands inception in 1990, albums such as 1996's Theli and 1998's Vovin are regarded as embodying some of the best material the band has to offer. Vovin is a lot more varied and conceivably slower than Theli. Therion's metal-ness has been piped-down somewhat on Vovin to leave way for the more softer, more extravagant classical elements found therein.

The album was cut with a full orchestra and symphony choir, offering the listener a rich baronial sound that most not familiar with the genre have yet to experience the grandness of it all. This disc not only mixes choir vocals with orchestrations, but includes a pounding rhythm section and heavy guitars to give the album its' metal inkling. Even the orchestrations here blend in much better than on Theli.

Lead composer/guitarist Christofer Johnsson has taken the basic ideas he first developed on Theli a step further, into classical music arrangements with full blown choirs and orchestration.

Vovin's epic adventure opens with "The Rise Of Sodom and Gomorrah", a solid opening track where the band slowly introduces you to their sound and eventually throws everything at you so you know exactly what you're getting into.

"Birth Of Venus Illegitima" is a more absorbing musical experience. The shifting between the low voices and the higher soprano/alto voices is a very nice touch. Now we're starting to feel like we are heading out somewhere...

The last minute of "Wine Of Aluqah" is so exhilarating.very triumphant! And what to say about the hyper-speed tempo of the "The Wild Hunt" - bombastic from the get go. Both these tracks remind me of the furiousness found on Theli. Two of the most engaging tracks on the album and I love 'em both!

"Clavicula Nox" is perhaps my FAV track on the album. What can I say, I'm a sucker for beautiful female lead vocals and acoustic guitar solos. Slow, atmospheric and beautiful...just an awesome track!

As with "Eye of Shiva", the "Draconian Trilogy" comprising of "The Opening", "Morning Star" and "Black Diamond" all send the listener on a journey through the calmer, more soothing side of Therion, inviting you to float away once again...

On "Raven Of Dispersion", you get a good variety of voices from low soothing male to high soprano female sounds...very nice mid paced closer!

Underneath the choir voices and musical arrangements are metal guitar riffs which prevent the listener from thinking he's at some opera house somewhere?

There is no doubt that Vovin pales in comparison to Theli's bombastic speed-opera. Although I'll agree that Therion is at it's best when the music is fast, but Vovin's magic lies in its slower paced light opera metal extravaganza!

If you are looking for a more headbanging opera metal experience, then the more dynamic Theli is the album of choice. But, if you prefer more variety, from slow to mid paced songs with the occasional furious hyper-speed track, then Vovin is by far the more interesting listening experience of the two. I like Theli a lot, but I LOVE Vovin even more! The emphasis here is on musical arrangements, orchestrations and choirs...and classical music with progressive heavy metal influences never felt so good! :)

Vanwarp | 5/5 |


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