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Released: Apr 3, 2010
Genre: Heavy metal, Symphonic metal, Power meta
Label: Nuclear Blast
Number Of Tracks: 11
Avantasia's new album The Wicked Symphony is a wonderful collection of beautiful harmonies, catchy choruses and superb orchestration.
The Wicked Symphony
Snowman388, on june 04, 2010 4 of 5 people found this review helpful
Sound: This album is Avantasia's second album of the Scarecrow trilogy, it was released along with Angels of Babylon, and is described as "a tragic story of a lonesome creature, emotionally isolated from his environment and suffering from a distorted sensory perception. His feelings for the love of his life unrequited, he sets off on a journey exploring the left-hand path, striving for inner peace, ploughing his way to approval and eventually facing temptation at the inner depths of the human soul..." So basically a lonely scarecrow looking for company. The band really goes all out to tell this unfortunate stack of hay's tale with epic choruses, amazing vocal content, the occasional shining of Sascha Paeth (guitar) and a good effort from the rest of the band. Not to take away from the musicians, as they are all talented. Eric Singer's drums are fantastic, constantly keeping a good and interesting beat with the occasional drum roll. Miro does a great job on the keyboards, and is a major part of the album. He is also in charge of the orchestration. Overall, he has the biggest role in terms of instruments, because of the sheer amount of instruments he is involved with. Tobias does a decent job on the bass, but nothing special there. When Sascha breaks out into a solo (which is only on occasion), it is used to such a great effect due to its rarity. The guitar riffs can be very heavy and inspiring. However, some of their songs seem to stray away from the metal genre, but are still very emotional and good to listen to. // 7
Lyrics: Avantasia is fueled by vocals, there is no debate about that. The members of Avantasia are all very talented, but they let Tobias Sammet and his 8 guest singers steal the show. The most notable guest is Judas Priests' very own Tim Owens on "Scales of Justice", which is easily my favorite song. Although I love metal for it's music and not the vocals, the singing is easily some of the best I've heard in a long time. The choruses are the best part, with the singers singing simple lyrics. It's very difficult to explain, but when I hear Tim and Tobias together in the chorus of "Scales", it's just so awe-inspiring I find myself singing along. And I don't do that. But a smile comes to my face with each chorus. However, the verses are not as emotional for me, but they are still great. // 10
Overall Impression: I just got Venom's discography, and I'm listening to this album instead. "Scales of Justice" is a classic, and I love it. "Crestfallen", "Dying for an Angel" and "Wastelands" are other notable ones. I really loved the vocal parts of the choruses, and hated that sometimes it was not metal enough. Also, a few more guitar/drum solos would have been much appreciated. // 9
The Wicked Symphony
Kämpfer, on april 06, 2010 3 of 5 people found this review helpful
Sound: Avantasia's new album The Wicked Symphony is a wonderful collection of beautiful harmonies, catchy choruses and superb orchestration. A must have for Avantasia fans. Although Tobias Sammet has incorporated many softer songs into this new release, the metal songs fail to disappoint. This album is a lot darker and symphonic in the Heavier songs and the softer songs are much longer. All of the songs on the album are over 4 minutes, with the exception of track 10 States of Matter which clocks in at 3:59.
As most of you should know, this album is part 2 of "The Scarecrow Saga" telling the story of a lonely creature taking company in friends. The Wicked Symphonytakes part after the 2008 album The Scarecrow and preceded by the album "Angel of Babylon" released at the same time as The Wicked Symphony. // 8
Lyrics: The singing in The Wicked Symphony perfectly demonstrates the talent of the singers involved. Namely; Jorn Lande, Russel Allen of Symphony X fame and Michael Kiske of ex-Helloween fame. I haven't read the lyrics yet, but from what I can hear they seem to be rather different to previous albums, not so much The Scarecrow, but there is a big difference in comparison to The Metal operas Part I & II. I give this section a 10/10 for absolutely superb vocal performances by everyone involved and very dedicated lyrics. // 10
Overall Impression: To be honest, I was a little bit disappointed with the album at the lack of Metal involved. I wasn't a big fan of the softer songs on the previous album but the soft/hard rock songs seem to reign supreme over the Metal tracks. Although, when the Metal is dished out here and there it is really quite heavy and hinting at the old Avantasia. Some songs that stand out on this album include (In no particular order)the title track, The Wicked Symphony. a 10 minute vocal battle between Tobias Sammet, Russel Allen and Jorn Lande. Track 2 Wastelands featuring Michael Kiske on vocals. Track 4, Scales of Justice. This song is one of the Metal-ish tracks on the album, with a heavy intro and softer verses/choruses. Tim "Ripper" Owens really does this song justice, providing amazing vocals.
One thing I don't like about the album is the lack of fast, Metal tracks. These songs seem to be replaced by Ballads or slow-mid/mid-fast Metal or more Pop-ish tracks. Some of the songs on the album sound like they could be played on the radio. All this aside, If this was stolen or lost I would absolutely purchase this album again. It's a very enjoyable listen and I don't see myself getting tired of it any time soon.
I'd recommend this album to anybody who enjoyed the previous release by Avantasia. // 8