Sound — 9
So, Rhapsody Of Fire's latest release "From Chaos To Eternity", is a great end to a great saga. This album holds all of the aspects that makes Rhapsody good however the band changes some of their priorities. For example Rhapsody has left behind of their large epic parts for a better more direct metal experience. That is not to say that Rhapsody is still certainly one of the more power metal bands, they are. The guitars are majestic, the keyboard is orchestral as usual, the bass gets a killer solo and the drums are solid. The vocals are soaring and they accompany some beautiful lyrics. The guitar work of Luca Turilli and Tom Hess gets a great chance to shine in the intro track which features a powerful guitar solo. The guitar work is brilliant and hyper melodic at times. Other times there are simple chordal structures that lend a lot of power to the music. The most notable guitar work comes in the lead track "Ad Infinitum" where the guitar solo helps make the traditional intro track sound a lot more impressive. While there is not a lot of sheer riffage on this album there are still some decent licks and a lot of tasty guitar bits. In addition to the nice fills there are some excellent solos here and all of them are melodic and beautiful. In the context of Rhapsodies work the guitar gets a lot more solos but it stays orchestral and melodic as usual. The keyboards on this album are humongous. The sheer symphony hidden in the fingers of the pianist is formidable. In general the piano adds a classical feel to the band's heavy metal basis. This is done very successfully and it helps to produce an exceptionally full sound. Without the keyboards this album would be maybe one fifth as mindblowing. Yet the keyboards add something to the music that makes it just almighty. The rhythm section is also extremely solid. In particular the bass solo at the beginning of "Aeons Of Raging" is excellent. Otherwise the bass stay in familiar galloping lines and adds some soul to the band. This gets repetitive after a while and it would be good if they would change it up. The drums are fabulously eclectic. There are quiet and gentle fills and heavy pounding explosions of sound. There are plenty of unique little licks on this record, in particular the drumming on "Anima Perduta" is classic Rhapsody. My final word on the rhythm of this album is that it is remarkably full and powerful with some awesome drum fills.
Lyrics — 8
The vocals on this track are beautiful. While they are usually clean and feature powerful singing and enormous falsettos there are also some light growls. They come together to form amazing contrasts. The vocals are brilliant in generally adding to the sheer might of the music. The lyrics on this record are epic as is the usual with Rhapsody. This album features the end of the epic story that Rhapsody has composed over the years. I won't delve into what the story talks about suffice to say that it is very well crafted and mythic on the level of the "Lord Of The Rings". The sole issue is that it is altogether to drawn out and the story feels like it took far too long to tell. All in all the singing on this album are spectacular and compliment some amazing lyrics that provide a good conclusion to Rhapsodies saga.
Overall Impression — 9
All in all this is a great conclusion to a truly mind blowing set of records. The music on this album had to be the apex of what Rhapsody and it is indeed, The guitar is as good as it has ever been, the rhythm instruments still rock and the vocals are amazing. This record has great replay quality because there is so much sheer depth that you would have to listen to this album 10 times just to scratch the surface. My favorite song is probably "Tornado" which is probably one of the most driven yet orchestral things that Rhapsody Of Fire has ever done. "From Chaos To Eternity" is a killer record, go listen to it.