|Review: Vexillum - The Bivouac|
Label: Limb Music Products
Year released: 2012
Genre: Power Metal
Review online: December 2, 2012
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Rated 3.4/5 (68%) (5 Votes)
Italy's Vexillum is signed to Limb Music and that means you can reasonably expect a few things; the music will be Power Metal, likely fantasy-themed, it will sound great and the band members will be highly talented. Check, check and check on their second album, The Bivouac. First, and foremost, this is a Power Metal album in the vein of Heavenly and Rhapsody, the kind that fans like me can't get enough of. It is loaded with double-kick drums, big choruses and flashy solos. Vexillum incorporate lots of folk instrumentation (flutes, strings, etc.) and sound effects between tracks to spice things up and give the album an air of authenticity. It's fun and not the kind of album I would purposefully skip if it came up on a random playlist but there are a couple of caveats. Since the word "bivouac" refers to military encampments that are, generally, not particularly exciting, the effects are of mundane things like cooking fires, horses champing at feedbags, etc. That lack of excitement carries over into the music, which means it isn't the grandest Power Metal album ever recorded. It is also nothing you haven't heard in Italian Power Metal many times before and singer Dario Vallesi's voice sounds just a bit strained by the material.
The caveats aside, The Bivouac is well played and the band is tight, so if you like Power Metal, particularly the Italian variety, you aren't likely to be disappointed.
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