Crown of Glory - A deep breath of life 4/5

Reviewed: 4-11-08





Tracklist:

1. The calling
2. Pathfinder
3. The raven's flight
4. Inspiration
5. The prophecy
6. Save me
7. Anthem of the end
8. Mirror, mirror
9. Ikarus
10. See you rise
11. The lament of the wind


I'm not sure everyone feels this way, but unless it's one of my favorite bands that's releasing a new CD, I actually look forward to hearing a debut more than another CD from an established band that I have. It just seems like discovering a new and (hopefully) spectacular band is more exciting, though this way of thinking is probably in the minority. Case in point, Switzerland's Crown of Glory. Although they already have a few demos and an EP under their belt, their full-length debut 'A deep breath of life' has been my first experience with the band.

The CD stood out right away, as exciting, slick and classy melodic power metal right in the center of my tastes. For comparisons, think of the popular group that includes Sonata Arctica, Cardiant, Stratovarius, Destination's Calling, Edguy, Nightscape, Dreamtale, Moonville, Power Quest, Saidian, Thunderstone, Supreme Majesty, and I even hear similarities to the amazing Keldian in a few spots. That's not all though, as some of the songs on 'A deep breath of life' fall under the pure melodic metal category, and it's band's like Altaria, Kotipelto and Dionysus that come to mind during these songs.

Vocally, Heinz Muther has a typical (regarding power metal) and crystal clear voice. I love listening to this guy sing, especially because he reminds me of Silvio Massaro of Vanishing Point when his voice is lower, and Lenny de Rose of the fun band Zeelion when he hits the higher notes. The majority of the time he's in the mid-range, and comes off as a blend of Silvio and Lenny. One thing's for sure, he fits the upbeat music very well and fans of the vocalists from the numerous aforementioned bands will be quite happy with his performance.

One of the things I like the most about this CD is that it has an exciting start. Track 1 "The calling" grabs your attention right away with catchy guitar work, keyboard highlights and Lenny's vocals, which lead you to believe that this going to be an outstanding CD. This truly is the case, as the majority features plenty of speed, keyboards both upfront and in the background, magnificent choruses, and lots of memorable moments. The band does a good job of mixing up the tempo too, most noticably at the mid-point of the CD with the slow "Save me" and the closer "The lament of the wind", a nice piano-oriented ballad. My favorite songs are the all-around fantastic track 3 "The raven's flight", the fast and catchy track 7 "Anthem of the end", and the extra-fun track 10 "See you rise", which it's impossible not to sing along to.

As you can tell, 'A deep breath of life' has been a pleasant surprise for me, and if it was released 10 years ago (before many other bands started up this exciting power metal style), it would be even more special. I don't think any of you will have a problem with originality though, as just like with, say, Power Quest, Crown of Glory is different enough to stand out. So quickly pick this up, and be prepared for an exciting and memorable debut.



CLINT




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