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The Silent Rage - The Deadliest Scourge

The Silent Rage
The Deadliest Scourge
by Kyle Harding at 02 August 2016, 7:37 AM

The time has finally arrived for THE SILENT RAGE to release their first, full-length album, which has been long-awaited by their listeners who thoroughly enjoyed their first two Eps, “The Silent Rage” and “Harvester of Souls”. Since their formation a decade ago, the Greek power metallers signed with Alone Records and put out their freshman effort, “The Deadliest Scourge” and, as far as first attempts go, this is not bad at all.

A good indicator on the overall anticipation of “The Deadliest Scourge” is the amount of people in the metal community that helped collaborate with THE SILENT RAGE. “The Deadliest Scourge” includes appearances by Apollo Papathanasio (SPIRITUAL BEGGARS), Yossi Sassi (ex-ORPHANED LAND), Vladimir Reshetnikov (ARKONA), and Theophilos Kritikos (FEEL), all of whom made great additions to the album, whether their roles were big or small.

The Deadliest Scourge” begins with a melodious, instrumental titled “Signal Of War”, which opens with a single pinging note and expands into tribal drums and low orchestration- all of the work of FEEL’s Theophilos Kritikos, until the song finally fades out. Though “Signal Of War” is a decent opening, I believe that a band’s first full-length album is better suited breaking out hard and fast, making a statement. But I wouldn’t want to discard such a deep, dark beginning- in actuality; it really helps to set the overall feel of the whole journey. I believe “Signal Of War” would have been better as a lead directly into the next song rather than be cut off in solitude.

Little technicalities aside, the opener is still an amazing scene-setter, and then we’re thrown into a raging torrent of “My Race Won’t Last” with a ripping drum intro by Stamatis Katsafados, setting a good pace. The instruments are very well mixed as a whole, with great guitar tonality by Nikos Siglidis and Kostas Krikos to support the vocalist, Steve Venardo. In power metal, the vocalist is always expected to rise above the rest of the band, which can only be done with a solid foundation, which isn’t lacking in “The Deadliest Scourge”. The drums drive forward with even double bass, impeccably timed splashes, and use of the entirety of the kit. What I was most impressed with, however, was the mixing of the bass guitar, performed by Stavros Tsilivarakos. The instrument isn’t invisible nor is it overbearing, but creates a stormy, thundering environment not unlike the album’s art. Maybe it was “The Deadliest Scourge”, or maybe it was the fact that I was listening during a thunderstorm outside, but this was the image that stuck with me.

The title track, “The Deadliest Scourge” kicks off with Stamatis’ sixteenth double-bass pound. Steve grows in power and passion along with growls from himself and Nikos, which are used conservatively, but effectively throughout the album. The title track also has the guitar solo it deserves, performed by Kostas, who switches from technicality and scale-jumping fretwork to melodious and matching the moving line. I only wish that the technicality persisted a little further, though the song itself is finely made. The best guitar solo in my personal opinion is on “Between Harmony & Sorrow” which is a real face-melter to say the least, following the tempestuous tone and exploding like lightning, splitting the sky and branching out to illuminate the darkness.

My favorite tune is probably “Sin Of A Pilgrim”, which takes on a more thrashy style with the starting groove. The powerful, moving vocal line is performed by none other than Apollo Papathanasio of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, whose distinct vocal style is a fantastic addition to the album. His emotion behind the chorus line is combative and propulsive, delivering just that little extra bit of flair to an already-tremendous tune.

Sin Of A Pilgrim” and “Leading The Legions”, both excellent songs, also have very similar tones and movements. Though the transition is very well executed, I almost wish that these two were put together into a longer, single opus in the middle of the album. As we progress into “Leading The Legions”, the intensity gathers like the growing gust and is unleashed (as the band puts it, “cracking the sky”) with a few slicing guitar fills.

The album slows only a little with “A Piece Of Eden” while the overall storminess subsides and is tamed with a smoother, longer-toned guitar solo about three-quarters of the way through. The sky finally clears with the last track, “Shadow Spirit”, which initiates with a gentle oud solo by Yossi Sassi, and carries on acoustically. We’re carried out of this wild gale of an musical experience with the bagpipes and sopilka of ARKONA’s Vladimir Reshetnikov.

As I listened to this album, I picked up a bit on the influence of some older power metal bands like HAMMERFALL and BLIND GUARDIAN. Though THE SILENT RAGE carried on with the same spirit of their ancestors, the sound is reformed, refined, and made their own- carrying the old torch to illuminate a new land of music.

Songwriting: 6/10
Originality: 7/10
Memorability: 7/10
Production: 9/10

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Signal Of War
2. My Race Won’t Last
3. The Deadliest Scourge
4. Stormwarrior
5. Between Harmony & Sorrow
6. Sin Of A Pilgrim
7. Leading The Legions
8. Proselytize The Masses
9. The Right To Dream
10. Thoughts Collapse
11. A Piece Of Eden
12. Shadow Spirit
Lineup:
Steve Venardo – Lead Vocals, Growls
Kostas Krikos – Lead Guitar
Nikos Siglidis – Guitar, Backing Vocals & Growls
Stavros Tsilivarakos – Bass Guitar
Stamatis Katsafados - Drums
Record Label: Alone Records
     


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