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Deathless Legacy - Saturnalia Award winner

Deathless Legacy
by Emily Schneider at 30 March 2020, 6:53 PM

So, this is an unusual review to fall onto my radar… The latest EP from Italian Metal band DEATHLESS LEGACY is a single song 24 minutes in length inspired by the ancient Roman holiday Saturnalia. Before I even started listening to the epic track of the same name, I looked into the holiday, which took place on the 17th to the 23rd of December. Essentially, it was a 3 to 7 day festival in which everyone, including slaves, were free to live however they see fit with no punishment or consequences for any unlawful or immoral actions. This was all to celebrate the Winter Solstice under the rule of a randomly chosen “Mock King” Saturn. This song is a dark and dramatic tale of revenge and redemption that takes place during this lawless time of celebration.

The whole song gives me strong AYREON vibes, just from the Progressive Metal feel. The riffs and transitions have that Arjen touch to them and the awesome synths throughout remind me a lot of many of his iconic Rock Opera works. The keys/organs create a great atmosphere for the story. There's this vengeful energy folded into the music, especially when paired with the cool Symphonic Metal style orchestration. It's more than enough to suck you into the dark tale forming as you listen. Steva's vocals are absolutely stunning; she has a massive and powerful vocal prowess that really paints the story she's telling. The repeating of "Saturnalia” at key moments of the song gave me goosebumps with its haunting melody and how the choir was layered perfectly with her voice. I really loved the gritty 'evil' side of her voice, in contrast to her angel-like high notes. I was so captivated by her incredible dynamic changes and leaps between octaves throughout this Metal Opera as well.

The story of this concept song (I suppose one could call it that anyway) is pretty complex, but lucky for us, the band not only made this Opera-style song but also a short film to accompany it. The visual aspect adds a whole other dimension to the song. It makes the story a bit easier to follow and envelops the listener even more that just the song alone. The band really went all out with this song with the details, both in the video and the music.

To sum it all up, this band has a fluctuating reputation in the Metal world; they get a lot of mixed reviews from the risks they take in their music. (similar to fellow Symphonic Metal band THERION) This piece in particular though gets a massive thumbs up. They blended genres beautifully, the storytelling was awesome, and the stellar emotional vocals are immaculate. The orchestration was also nearly perfect and worthy of praise. This is an excellent music style for them, it had just the right amount of theatrics that it was enjoyable without coming across as cheesy or tacky. They found a happy medium on this piece and I truly hope they continue this balance on future works.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1.  Saturnalia
Steva – Vocals
Frater Orion – Drums
Alex Van Eden – Keyboards
Sgt. Bones – Guitar
Deadwood Nick- Bass
Record Label: Scarlet Records


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Edited 05 June 2020

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