Wind Rose
Stonehymn

As I continue dip my plated sabatons into power metal, a genre I have ignored for many years, amid the older, expected suspects I am enjoying like Blind Guardian, Thy Majestie, Orden OganFreedom CallRhapsody and Sabaton, some relative new comers have caught my ear such as Twilight Force, Pathfinder, Grimgotts, LörBrothers of Metal and my favorite so far, Italy’s Wind Rose.

With 2 albums already under their belt, Wind Rose have become one of my new favorite bands on the strength of Stonehynm, their third effort. Whereas most high fantasy power metal has a far more flowery, glittering almost Elvish quality about it, Stonehymn has a sterner, almost Dwarven like approach like it was hammered and forged rather than cast as a a spell.

Don’t get me wrong this is still a VERY grandiose, epic, choir filled and folky/flutey take on power metal that will appeal to fans of all the bands mentioned above, but it just has a more earthy, hammer on steel sound. Part of it is the vocals of Francesco Cavalieri (also of Fairyland/Fantasia), who has a deeper, more folky, fireplace timbre rather than a falsetto approach, and he is almost always backed by synths and a downright epic choir (that reminded me of Thy Majestie and Stormlord’s first couple of releases) not unlike many of their peers. And there are plenty of Dwarven style chanted ‘ heya  heyas’, or ‘lei la lei’s’ jigs, so be forewarned, but personally I found them to be utterly addictive.

Musically, there is less of a verse chorus structure, but a more story telling progressive vibe as the songs go through several phases and stanzas. Also, something that really stood out to be was a tangible Ennio Morricone presence. Just listen to opening track “Dance of Fire” or  “Fallen Timbers” and those gorgeous crescendo-ing female vocals and western galloping twangs could be in any Spaghetti Western movie. It’s a nice added element to some already downright epic power/folk metal.

Each of the 7 lengthier songs (plus an intro and interlude) is a damn rousing, sing along, fist pumping winner. The likes of “Under the Stone”, “To Erebor” (the second track in as many weeks with “Who Haa!” chants), flat out god damn blood pumping”Fallen Timbers” and majestic, austere  closer “The Eyes of the Mountain” just will make you want to swing a hammer or fight an elf. This also has a wide appeal to as fans of Ensiferum, Turisas and such will no doubt enjoy this despite the clean vocals, but lets be honest, those bands are cousins of power metal anyway. Shunning usual power metal paradigms, there is also no true ballad (“The Wolves Call” is a tad slower though), so put your lighters away.

Stonehymn is going to end up on my year end list for 2017, a first for a power metal album for me, so that should give you some idea of how damn good it is.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
June 5th, 2017

Comments

  1. Commented by: Sergio Henrique

    Is a Great band!


  2. Commented by: Sergio Henrique

    I recommend!


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