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Damnation Angels - Bringer Of Light Award winner

Damnation Angels
Bringer Of Light
by YngwieViking at 14 March 2013, 3:30 PM

An unknown British band that beats at its own game the entire Scandinavian Symphonic Metal Scene? Impossible, I will probably hear you say. This is the debut full length album by this skilled bunch from England. After a 6 tracks EP self-released in 2009 and handled by another vocalist who left quickly, there was a turning point a real progression peak. If you compare most of the tracks that were already a part of the good old “Shadow Symphony” EP with their brand new renditions on “Bringer Of Light”, the difference is mind blowing. Why you ask?

Because of the smart move that was the recruitment of Per Fredrik Asly aka "Pellek" his addition to the line-up was decisive in the success of “Bringer Of Light” (you can also try finding his first, yet warmly recommended solo album “Bag of Tricks” also reviewed somewhere here on Metal Temple). Per Fredrik, Who? I hear you ask. You are very verbose and prolix today, aren't you?

Mr. Asly is a young Norwegian born Power Metal Singer that was “discovered” in 2009, when he starred on the "The X Factor" competition in Norway on National TV. This show was utterly popular and was broadcasted for millions in Scandinavia. He ended up in the final top 12 and was approved to perform live on prime-time singing cover songs for RHAPSODY / STARTOVARIUS / MASTERPLAN and KAMELOT with a great triumph. After that when the TV show was over, taking advantage of his new status and surfing on the great web-buzz-celebrity wave, he was involved with the US Prog project called THE ANABASIS (2011's album “Back From Being Gone”) then he also started to work for his solo album with genius Tommy ReinXeed who produced & played on the album “Bag Of Tricks” released by Doolittle Records (GOLDEN RESURRECTION / REINXEED / DIVINE FIRE)

In the same time Pellek began working with the mighty Will “Maestro” Graney for this album: That is, so far his best release in his career and he could be very proud of it, he turned out to be the winning asset and the figure head for DAMNATION ANGELS, a British band that beats the glory of the Scandinavian Symphonic Metal Scene. So, QED. yes, it’s possible but only with a well-integrated Scandi-Transfuges-renegade working side by side with one of the most talented songwriters in this style of all countries combined.

The Symphonic elements are very up front here but the guitars are equally strong and quite sharp, being Norwegian, I suppose that Asly is one of Roy Khan's disciples as the KAMELOT influence is very obvious in the whole album. However, on the track “Reborn”, I recognized the inputs of the “Flow” era of the late CONCEPTION. Hats off for another exceptional vocal performance in the track “Shadow Symphony”, once again the mix between Power Metal's aggressiveness & Majestic Symphonic parts are perfectly balanced like early NIGHTWISH mixed with BALANCE OF POWER in a more grandiose and solemn territory, like an Epic journey that reminded me of the immense album by SONS OF SEASONS "Magnisphyricon". Another way to keep the surprise and excitement, and also to break the routine bringing a certain tension which is missing in most of Symphonic Power Metal, they choose to cover an impressive cut from METALLICA out of "S&M".

The splendid sonic execution is more than perfect and truly smashing, like an immaculate ideal matching and even improved, as it was already trying and achieved by ROYAL HUNT / RHAPSODY and DRAGONLAND. The final cut is one of the best track and surely the most original song! Indeed “Pride (The Warrior's Way)”, is Jaw-dropping, a perfect melting pot with some Japanese's samisen motif mixed with Staccato riffage in a full orchestral envelope, until it runs into, a real catchy and truly unexpected chorus. What an achievement, amazing.

4 Star Rating

1. Ad Finem
2. The Longest Day Of My Life
3. Reborn
4. I Hope
5. Acerbus Inceptum (Pt. I)
6. Someone Else (Pt. II)
7. Bringer Of Light (Pt. III)
8. Shadow Symphony (Pt. IV)
9. No Leaf Clover
10. Pride (The Warrior’s Way)
Per Fredrik "Pellek" Asly - Lead Vocals
Will Graney – Lead Guitars / Orchestration / Vocals
Stephen Averill - Bass
Dawn Trigg - Keyboards
John Graney – Drums
Record Label: Massacre Records


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