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Flaming Row - Elinoire CD (album) cover


Flaming Row


Progressive Metal

4.01 | 69 ratings

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Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams
4 stars Any similarity with actual facts or cases is purely coincidental...

Flaming Row is the vision of the talented composer and multi-instrumentalist Martin Schnella and Elinoire is the debut album of this multi-national project (rather than band). Flaming Row actually has a core of 4 members but in this modern rock opera, the number of musicians and vocalists comes up to the unbelievable figure of 30!

The album is thematically spawned around a concept of a young British family drama, but I have to be honest that the lyrical part is the one on which I concentrated the least. At first, I almost discarded it as a "stereotypical" modern progressive metal album, but subsequent listens have changed my mind towards a more positive approach. Throughout the 80 minutes of this concept, the roles are interchangeable and the different vocalists and moods keep the interest at high levels. The participation of Allman and Wehrkamp give this extra push to profile and quality and the SHADOW GALLERY influence is apparent. The music and the overall approach remind heavily of the paths that Arjen Lucassen follows with AYREON; they are actually almost identical: a concept with several roles and a story that unfolds through roles and emotional variations.

The powerful guitar work resembles to most of the "big ones" of modern progressive metal, such as SHADOW GALLERY (Overture), AYREON (Nightingales Chirp) and PAIN OF SALVATION (Time Mirror). There are a lot of mellow songs and ballads but also a number that go back to the roots of heavy/power and mainstream metal (Rage of Despair and Lea's Delivery). Although the influences are pretty obvious, the quality of composition and delivery is so high that shades everything else, and with dynamites such as Unearth the Truth, Schnella delivers his credentials.

All and all, a satisfying package of European progressive metal reaching production, sound and executional excellence. The step beyond for this project would be to reach closer to compositional and mainly innovation excellence in order to produce something truly memorable; the pre-requisites are certainly there. Elinoire is unreservedly recommended to fans of AYREON.

aapatsos | 4/5 |


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