The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

SYMFONIA
In Paradisum

Riot Entertainment, 2011

 

 

By Shane Pinnegar

 

Soaring vocals, frantic riffing, searing hot solos and an epic scope mark this gloriously rich album as a winner from opening track 'Fields of Avalon'. There's a sense that this is what Queensryche may have sounded like had they tkaen their debut EP down a more Euro/power metal route.

 

‘Santiago’ is absolutely epic, teetering on the brink of madness as it builds and builds, ebbs back, then builds to a crescendo again.

 

Full of impeccable performances, this album really does have a sense of the magnificent about it – the players never miss a beat, the production is lavish and this must surely be huge in Europe, catering as it does to their grandiose metal tastes.

 

Symfonia are like a cat toying with our emotions as the near operatic ballad ‘Alayna’ again displays the building dynamic, reeled back and then built up again.

 

There’s some keyboard and guitar flourishes that harken back to the Rainbow days of Ronnie James Dio, and clutches of children’s voices punctuate ‘In Paradisum’, perhaps the most Queensryche-ey song here.

 

As we get to the second half of the album a few songs lose the momentum of those previously mentioned, despite performances never flagging for a moment. ‘Pilgrim Road’ and ‘I Walk In Neon’ are pretty nondescript affairs, before the atmospheric ‘Don’t Let Me Go’ closes the album out.

 

Overall a very good record, the songwriting lets Symfonia down with a few tunes just not interesting enough, but with world class playing and production, “In Paradisum” is still a solid and powerful listen.