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Forbidden Seed – On Blackest Wings, Shadow of the Crow Pt. 1 Award winner

Forbidden Seed
On Blackest Wings, Shadow of the Crow Pt. 1
by Mark Machlay at 17 May 2022, 5:42 AM

Steel Gallery Records proudly announced the return of Greek heavy/power metal band FORBIDDEN SEED with their third full-length album “On Blackest Wings, Shadow of the Crow Pt. 1”. Released this past February 22, 2022. Originally starting as a solo project over 10 years ago, guitarist, vocalist and mastermind Constantin Maris wanted a way for him to write material that didn’t fit with his other death, black and progressive metal projects in which he could extol his love of the American power metal scene. With the aid of good friend and fellow musician Nik Rock – who is responsible for the band’s name and acts as “godfather” for the band – Maris started writing material. After some unfortunate events, Maris changed course and started building a real band for the project with Nik Danielos on bass and Mike Verros joining for drums in the summer of 2013 to record their first album “From Sand to Eternity” eventually releasing in November of 2015. After playing several lives shows, they took some time off due to personal reasons and returned with their second album “The Grand Masquerade” releasing in March of 2018 with some lineup changes. They spent the next couple years touring and promoting the album with shows across Greece.

FORBIDDEN SEED entered the studio to record their next album in November of 2019 with the intention to work hard on the album’s production next spring, everything was, unfortunately put on hold due to the worldwide pandemic. Fast forward to early 2021, the band is slowly starting work on their new album again, with the recordings split between Athens/Thessaloniki and Cyprus and lasting almost a year, the band were ready to present their first foray into a concept album with “On Feathered Wings, Shadow of the Crow Pt. 1”. It’s mysterious, dark and enigmatic tale that follows the storyline of “The Crow” movie. As usual, many guest musicians appear on the album including guitarist Kosta Vreto of WARDRUM, who also arranged all the orchestral and choir parts for the record, along with Sakis Bandis of HORIZON’S END and HAIL SPIRIT NOIR. Furthermore, the album is produced by Vreto and the band’s singer and guitarist Constatin Maris at LittleBig Studio in Thessaloniki, Greece.

It goes without saying that concept album’s can either be epic and mighty or long-winded and self-indulgent – see Roger Water’s and his endless solo career – but I’m happy to say that FORBIDDEN SEED hit it out of the park with “On Blackest Wings, Shadow of the Crow Pt. 1”. This album sees them stepping up their symphonic elements while still anchoring themselves in power metal, but this album has more of a dark and sinister vibe than previous albums. Also, one of their first albums that I believe really takes you on a journey, demanding a full listen from beginning to end with small spoken word bits acting as interludes as well a short instrumental connecting track in “Paint your Face” that connect the tapestry together. If I had to give a comparison, I would say it sounds more like an ICED EARTH than a KAMELOT album and Maris has a voice very similar in the growling but versatile style of Jon Schaffer. I’m eager to hear the second half of this two-parter and is worthy addition to the power metal canon.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Awakening
2. On Feathered Wings
3. I Am
4. Murderers Among Us
5. Clown
6. Paint your Face
7. Victims Aren’t We All
8. Greed
9. Paths of the Shadows
10. Bound
11. Dancing Shadows
12. Beyond the Doors of Sleep
13. I Do Care
14. Death is Coming
15. Mother (A word for God)
16. Till Death Do Us Part (Requiem)
Constantin Maris – Vocals & Guitars
Nik Danielos – Bass
Kostas Matis – Drums
Record Label: Steel Gallery Records


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