|Review: Assedium - Rise of the Warlords|
|Rise of the Warlords|
Label: My Graveyard Productions
Year released: 2006
Genre: Heavy Metal
Review online: October 17, 2006
Reviewed by: Ulysses
for:Rise of the Warlords
Warlords Arise! Assedium are a recent ensemble from Italy, formed only in 2004! Only a year has passed since they released their promising demo entitled "Far From the Light", which included promising tracks and a very nice cover of Heavy Metal juggernauts Cirith Ungol's "Black Machine". "Rise of the Warlords" however, is a perfect album for those who are fans of classic, balls-to-the-wall Heavy Metal (like I am). Fans of Ironsword, Manilla Road, Omen, Brocas Helm, Battleroar and Cirith Ungol take heed, Assedium are a band that will be joining the ranks of these aforementioned names of Metal soon in time. "Rise of the Warlords" marks the beginning of a band that not only carries the banner for true Heavy Metal, but is on their way to becoming a promising leader (or Warlord, if you will) in the ways of Epic Metal. Lyrically, the band is heavily influenced by the classic fantasy tales of Elric of Melnibone and Conan the Barbarian, but also delves deep into the past, writing songs on Gallic, Hellenic, Roman and Crusader battles, and even provides some Lovecraft influence, covering even the Cthulhu mythos territory. So you know what to expect here if you're a veteran of Epic Heavy Metal, lots of killer shit in the lyrical department.
The music, I must say, is entirely top-quality. The album begins with a mellow opener, titled Ancestral. Usually this is used in bands of this kind to create a mellow atmosphere before they smash your face in with crushing riffs as if you were to be bashed with a bludgeon to the skull. Correct I am, for the next track "Sacred Vengeance" is a fine tune with flexible and aggressive riffs topped with vocals that carry the lyrics perfectly, not to mention the solid drumming and echoing bass lines that leave no prisoners! The overall sound of the album would be accurately described as an honorable blend between "Open the Gates"-era Manilla Road molded together with Battleroar's "Age of Chaos", with pleasant flourishes of Cirith Ungol's "King of the Dead" to add to the overall sound. This band is no "tribute band" however, it is as if you were to take the best of all of these three albums above and forge them together with that unique edge that the Greek and Italian Epic Heavy Metal bands love to add to the music. Although a lot of Italian Epic Metal bands seem to differ a bit from the American-styled ones, Assedium acts more of a medium between the two, which would please fans of anything from Airged Lamh to Slough Feg! The production on the album is quite good as well; I was also impressed with the mixing. Everything seemed to be balanced and it had that rough quality that makes this breed of Heavy Metal so pleasurable.
I would very much like to point out highlights in the album, but after some careful listens I cannot seem to pick any of the tracks in higher regard to the others. This album is flawless from beginning to end, an undeniably wonderful listen. It may not be the most technically proficient album out there, but Assedium do something that most bands seem to take lightly now, they make Heavy Metal the way it's supposed to be done. No keyboard wankery, no fretboard masturbation, no odd time-signature bullshit or excessive narrations, they just make bad-ass Heavy Metal with no gimmicks and lots of attitude for serious metalheads that love the music they listen to. Diehard fans of Progressive Metal or Black Metal will probably scoff at this, but I say they should shut their mouths; this is as fun as Metal can get. I guarantee anyone who acquires this album will enjoy themselves as much as I did while listening to it. Why does Metal have to be so artsy nowadays? Screw that garbage! If you want to spend an excellent 43 minutes, pick this album up and prepare to be blown away!
My Highest Recommendation!
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