Here's a review I did for the latest album by a band I'm really into at the moment called "Damnation Angels"
The Valiant Fire
Damnation Angels are a UK based Symphonic metal band fronted by popular youtube star
and power metal vocalist PelleK. However, there's more to this band than just a pretty face.
I was a huge face of the bands previous album, Bringer of Light, as if had a familiar sound
reminiscent of (and comparable, I feel, in terms of quality) to much bigger bands such as Kamelot
and Seventh Wonder but with a definite memorable quality in the compositions and superb vocals.
These are two qualities that definitely carry over to their second album. With most of the (incredibly
technical and instrumentally rich) songs coming in over the 7 minute mark, every song still manages to carry incredibly catchy melodic hooks that I'm always finding myself humming out loud (not always a good thing if you're at work). The use of synth is what really elevates these songs above mere standard symphonic metal, ranging from oriental string instruments on "Under an Ancient Sun" and "Everlasting" to the trance style tape-stops on "Icarus Syndrome". The sweeping orchestral sections also drive the aggression of the heavier riffs as well as add depth to the melodic parts;
a perfect atmosphere for the lyrics about dying on a battlefield or being separated from loved ones by
the horrors of war (A theme they like to visit a lot). My favourite song on the album at the moment is "The Passing" which is like a power metal ballad crossed with the "Star Trek Voyager" theme song that results in one of the catchiest sing-along anthems I've ever heard in ages.
In short, with "The Valiant Fire", Damnation Angels have bypassed the difficult second album syndrome by essentially making the same thing but better. I can't wait to see what they've got in them next.