|Review: Elvenpath - Spyrol|
Year released: 2008
Genre: Power Metal
Review online: July 26, 2008
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 3.33/5 (66.67%) (3 Votes)
I got Elvenpath's debut album waaaaay back in '04, and I was surprised to find out they still existed. This is a German Power Metal band still struggling in the unsigned underground. Their name would make you suspect some Magica/Operatika style Nightwish-worship, but actually, the one chick in Elvenpath plays guitar rather than sing.
On the one hand, Elvenpath have a lot of energy and enthusiasm, and the recording job is so much better this time it's not even funny. (Their last album sounded like it was recorded while the band was buried in a landfill.) Their riffage is tight and clean, and songs like "Angel Of Fire" and "Northern Son" are genuine Power Metal epics. On the other hand, their overall sound is highly derivative and clichéd, sounding like highly recycled Gamma Ray/Hammerfall songs. Maybe not as bad as Gaia Epicus, but you get the idea. Their riffs and vocal lines are not terribly memorable, and tend towards a singsong approach that sounds quite dated. This was once state of the art for Power Metal, but that was ten years ago, people. Vocalist Tim Zahn is a weak point; as he is not bad, but not really good either. These songs might have more punch performed by a singer with some real charisma, but Zahn's voice is a bit thin and he obviously does not have much range. He gets the job done and that's about it.
I like this band, and their music is enjoyable if not exactly arresting. If they had a killer vocalist they might make a go of it, but then maybe not. If the best they can do after four years is this, then maybe greatness just isn't in the cards for them. Then again, if you want straight-up Power Metal that parties like it's 1999, you could do way worse.
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