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Therion Symphony Masses - Ho Drakon Ho Megas album cover
3.22 | 51 ratings | 5 reviews | 10% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1993

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Baal Reginon (2:13)
2. Dark Princess Naamah (4:20)
3. A Black Rose (Covered with Tears, Blood and Ice) (4:02)
4. Symphoni Drakonis Inferni (2:35)
5. Dawn of Perishness (5:53)
6. The Eye of Eclipse (5:02)
7. The Ritualdance of the Yezidis (2:11)
8. Powerdance (3:08)
9. Procreation of Eternity (4:07)
10. Ho Drakon Ho Megas - Act 1: The Dragon Throne (1:26)
11. Ho Drakon Ho Megas - Act 2: Fire and Ecstasy (2:52) - not on LP

Total Time: 37:49

Line-up / Musicians

- Christofer Johnsson / vocals, guitar, keyboards
- Magnus Barthelson / guitar
- Andreas Wallan Wahl / bass
- Piotr Wawrzeniuk / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Kristian Whlin

CD Megarock Records ‎- MRR 002 (1993, UK)
CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 579-2 (2000, Germany) Remastered, new cover

LP Megarock ‎- CPD 005 (1997, Sweden) With less one track

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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THERION Symphony Masses - Ho Drakon Ho Megas ratings distribution

(51 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(31%)
Good, but non-essential (31%)
Collectors/fans only (20%)
Poor. Only for completionists (8%)

THERION Symphony Masses - Ho Drakon Ho Megas reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Dragon on and on

Two years after the release of "Beyond Sanctorum", Therion returned with their third album. Do not be fooled by the "Symphony" reference in the title, the band are not yet ready to make the career defining change which will find them embracing their trademark operatic sounds; this album remains rooted in the death metal of their previous efforts. The title "Ho Drakon Ho Megas" comes from the Greek for The great dragon, a pointer towards the mysticism hidden within the lyrics.

The line up is almost completely different this time around, with only band founder and leader Christofer Johnsson remaining. The band becomes a quartet with Magnus Barthelson coming in on lead guitar and a new drummer and bassist. Johnsson once again tackles keyboards in addition to his vocal and guitar duties. He describes the album as the bands "most experimental", but I would suggest this is a simply a way of saying "diverse". Little real progress is made here though, the songs being a succession of riff driven growl fests.

On "Symphoni drakonis inferni" there are hints of something a little different, with quasi- symphonic overtones and brief choral keyboard vocals. The intro to "Dawn of Perishness" has a Black Sabbath feel to it, the crowd cheers apparently being a studio addition. The song itself is a bit of a mess though, saved only by some infectious riffing.

"The Eye of Eclipse" has the band's most inventive intro to date. It is all a bit contrived, and inevitably leads to more riffs and growls, but it does hint at something more interesting. "Powerdance" is the most diverse of the tracks being a brief "Zorba's dance" like instrumental to lighten the mood. The final two part title track includes some decent lead guitar soloing but ends all too soon.

In all, an album which is very much an acquired taste. Even those who appreciate the death metal style may find there is a little too much diversity here while those with only a passing interest may feel they have heard it all before.

Review by Warthur
4 stars As the title Symphony Masses suggests, right here is where Therion started experimenting with incorporating overtly symphonic sounds into their death metal format, resulting in a progressive death metal style which may sound rudimentary compared to works such as Theli, but if approached from a death metal perspective clearly finds Therion carving out a distinctive niche and sound for themselves. Never again would they be quite as pure as they were on prior releases, and their sound would only be the richer for it, and this album's dramatic sound is a solid listen in its own right as well as laying the foundation for what would follow.

Latest members reviews

5 stars Symphony Masses is one of my absolute favourite Therion albums. Admittedly, it's no Theli, but it's excellent in its own right. The original artwork looks great, and the music sounds just as great. Christofer Johnsson has later stated that he "As the old members had left the band I tried all the ... (read more)

Report this review (#202259) | Posted by Mogorva | Tuesday, February 10, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Unlike many a Swedish Death Metal band in the early 90's, Therion chose not to follow Entombed down the Left Hand Path, opting instead to bringing innovative and challenging elements to the genre, shrouding their compositions in mystical darkness similar to fellow Swedes Tiamat. And while Ther ... (read more)

Report this review (#86108) | Posted by bleak | Monday, August 7, 2006 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This album is very difficult to describe: the base is again brutal death metal, but this time with classic heavy metal, speed/trash metal, hardcore, classic and folkish influences. Again, for a good look at Therion's classic style, it's not the album to begin with. "Baal Reginon" is the intro ... (read more)

Report this review (#66576) | Posted by zaxx | Tuesday, January 24, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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