Artist: Serenity  
   Title:  War Of Ages
   Label: Napalm Records  
 

'War Of Ages' is the fourth album from Austrian Symphonic Metallers Serenity, the band featuring Georg Neuhauser, Thomas Buchberger, Andreas Schipfinger, Mario Hirzinger, Fabio D’Amore and for 2013, Clementine Delauney, who collectively bring their own brand of Symphonic Power Metal to the masses once more.

The album once again is filled with heavy rhythms, symphonic orchestrations and now with Delauney, a new female vocal element.

'War Of Ages' gets underway in true Symphonic Metal style with the haunting ‘Wings Of Madness’.  A powerful opener that really shows the band have progressed sonically since their last album 'Death And Legacy’, with the inclusion of Delauney at the forefront.

The tremendous power and might is continued with the superb ‘The Art Of War’.  The orchestrations on this one take the whole sound to a new level and give it an epic, almost Filmscore Metal feel.  Again the duetting vocals between Neuhauser and Delauney are just superb.

With ‘Shining Oasis’ there is less orchestra and just more keyboards courtesy of Hirzinger, with just as touch of a North African feel to it.  You can almost taste the sand dunes on this one.

It's then time to bring the tempo down a touch with the ballad ‘For Freedom’s Sake’, with Neuhauser sounding like one Tony Kakko on this song, as he duets with Delauney on this superb soar-away ballad.

Then it's back to that Filmscore Metal vibe with the simply stunning ‘Age Of Glory’.  This is Symphonic Power Metal at its very best, monstrous overtures of guitars and keys interwoven with a thunderous rhythm section, all capped off by some wonderful vocals.  This song being just one of the many highlights on this album.

The tremendous sonic tones continue with the massive ‘The Matricide’, which keeps the orchestrations down to a minimum, as the massive bass and double kick drums drive this one ever forward.  The mighty rhythm section of D’Amore and Schipfinger making their presence felt once more on the multi layered splendour of ‘Symphony For The Quiet’.

Not to be outdone by the rhythm section, guitarist Buchberger shows his musical ability on the riff laden ‘Tannenberg’, before a real turn around as the band bring in a little Medieval Folk element for the intro to ‘Legacy Of Tudors’, but this is just a short reprise as the song soon explodes into a cacophony guitars, big bass lines, tub thumping drums and soaring vocals.

This magnificent album concludes with another multi layered piece ‘Royal Pain’, which again shows just how much the band have developed over the years.  The musicianship on here is simply superb.  The vocals are excellent.  This is the album that is sure to put Serenity up their with the likes of Kamelot, Sonata Arctic and Within Temptation and their like.

Review by: Barry McMinn 

Tracklisting:

1. Wings Of Madness
2. The Art Of War
3. Shining Oasis
4. For Freedoms Sake
5. Age Of Glory
6. The Matricide
7. Symphony For The Quiet
8. Tannenberg
9. Legacy Of Tudors
10. Royal Pain   

                    

 

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