Arya - The vision 4/5

Reviewed: 2-29-08


1. Lux de corazon
2. Oceans area
3. Atlantica
4. Serpent of darkness
5. Mighty dragon
6. Bad for good
7. Heaven is calling
8. Spirit of love
9. The vision
10. Warrior

Those who regularly follow my writing are aware that Nightwish has always been one of my favorite bands. But since they've gradually been moving away from symphonic power metal, and into pure symphonic metal, I've been watching for new bands that capture the sound of the early days of Nightwish, when they were one of the best power metal bands in existence. The late-2006 debut 'Nyx secrets' from Wildpath greatly succeeded at providing us with the sound, and there have been a few other CDs that have been solid (for the style) as well.

Next in line is an obscure symphonic power metal band from Germany named Arya, and they intruduce themselves with a full-length debut 'The vision'. Thankfully, the CD is truly comparable to early Nightwish, and other comparisons would be Fading Starlight, Magica, Visions of Atlantis, Legenda Aurea, Operatika, Overdream, Lunatica, Rosa Ignea, Caravellus and the aforementioned Wildpath. It's grabbed me right from the start too, as it's a very upbeat, bouncy and catchy CD, with a good amount of speed. Only the short interludes (track 2 "Oceans area" and track 9 "The vision") and the one ballad, track 8 "spirit of love" (which is absolutely beautiful), are slow, meaning 7 of the 10 tracks are exciting.

In addition, female vocalist Christina Sprenger is quite strong, and probably one of the better vocalists from the many mentioned bands. As you would guess, her voice is of the soprano/operatic variety, and really, she's easily competitive with every other female vocalist out there. Plus, the rhythm guitar section is fantastic and the band is very tight as a whole, greatly excelling in the songwriting department. My favorite song is the catchy-as-hell closer "Warrior", as it's an extremely powerful finish to a consistently excellent CD.

Still, if Arya ever pops out of the underground, the originality police are going to quickly have them cuffed. In my opinion, execution is much more important than originality, and in the land where I rule (which is make-believe of course, hehehe), Arya is very high up on the quality scale. So 'The vision' is highly recommended to those who like early Nightwish and the previously mentioned bands as much as I do, but for those who are no longer interested in female fronted symphonic power metal, this probably won't draw you back to the style.




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