Winter's Verge - Tales of Tragedy
Massacre Records
Power Metal
11 songs (53:25)
Release year: 2010
Massacre Records
Reviewed by Thomas

Enter Winter's Verge, a fresh power metal band out of Cyprus ready with their third album Tales of Tragedy. Nothing spectacular or particularly re-inventive here, just pure fun, charismatically forged power metal with a tasty hint of prog to it. Starting of with the energetic and brilliantly guitar-driven World of Lies, the masquerade with signs of bands like Serenity, Reckoning Night-era Sonata Arctica, and even some masked, devilish Symphony X axe-man work is kicked off. Carried on by the melodic, and extremely catchy Old Man's Wish brings back memories from my short stint with Stratovarius with harpsichord keyboards, and yet again very appealing guitar-work. The tight and crunchy production provides a comfortable and modern sound properly melted together into a rather powerful album. A term that can be left out from most bands in the genre nowadays. The traveler-theme gives a certain Iron Savior vibe that was very apparent on Battering Ram. It is in other words clear that Winter's Verge manages to capture the good to great moments of power metal and shaping it into something of their own. While not particularly breathtakingly intense in any way, rocking riffs, border-line pop-like catchy melodies, nice keyboard-runs and guitar-solos, coupled with heavy rhythm-work, the guys from the small island in the Mediterranean ocean have produced a highly enjoyable and meaty album for a genre that lacks flesh on its weak bones

My only beef with this is the vocals. There's not anything special about them, and that's the problem. The guy can obviously sing, but he seems frightened of letting himself go, and it keeps this from being an absolute stunner, because everything else is there. However, just like the Greek Gods Holy Martyr they have the essence, the charm and the passion that is required from them, and though not as masterful as their Greek companions, this has a bunch of quality to it. Except the incredibly boring ballad For Those Who Are Gone, this is mostly sparkling with delightful energy provided from every member of the band. As I mentioned in the above paragraph, the influences are ranging far and wide from nearly all specters of power metal, and the sheer joy in hearing the pirate-themed The Captain's Log reminiscent of Running Wild, pushes buttons that maybe only Orden Ogan have spotted earlier this year. Thrilling and lively, Envy carries things onwards through the cool and speedy Dark Entries, the hook-fest Tomorrow's Dawn, all the way to the gradually pretty impressive Madness Once Called Love that after a calm and acoustic intro bursts into a short storm of wild riffs unleashed by Harry Pari takes an otherwise generic song to a different level.

All in all this is a highly enjoyable album that most power metal-heads should get a hold of. The occasional generic moments is made up for by numerous other aspects, including the faint proggy touch, the slight old-school feeling, as well as the flash of a broad horizon of influences that brings back memories of a time when I actually enjoyed this genre to the max. As I mentioned, the vocalist is what keeping this from being a truly great power metal album, that said though, the quality on everything else is undeniable, and after a few spins singing along for yourself, discovering that you actually have no problem reaching the same highs and lows as the slightly trapped George Charlambous, I bet you'll have just as much of fun with it as I had. Recommended.

Killing Songs :
World of Lies, Old Man's Wish, The Captain's Log, Dark Entries, Reflections of the Past, Madness Once Called Love
Thomas quoted 82 / 100
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There are 2 replies to this review. Last one on Tue Feb 16, 2010 8:07 am
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