Airged L'Amh - Ode to salvation 4/5

Reviewed: 8-22-08


1. Midlothian
2. Hunter's path
3. Ode to salvation
4. Eternal eyes
5. Dine in hades
6. Pages of essence
7. The ritual lair
8. Mo coushel
9. Glide on the wings

'Ode to salvation' is the 3rd release from these epic Greek metal veterans, and it delivers a satisfying blend of all out, epic-fantasy metallic glory, with a folk/celtic tinge. Picture the expected, martial metal influence of Manowar and Virgin Steele, mixed with a smaller dose of Skyclad, The Lord Weird Slough Feg, and older Elvenking, and then picture it done very well, and that’s what this CD delivers.

The CD features a new vocalist in Steve Venardo aka Stavros Giannakopoulos, whose approach is slightly less traditional/clean, in that he’s a good straightforward singer in the general Eric Adams/Defeis mold, and an even stronger similarity to Giacomo Mercaldo from Heimdall, but also has a bit of the mild sneer, rumbling effect to change up his vocals lines, somewhat along the line of what Damnagoras does in the older Elvenking CDs. That, together with songwriting that’s a bit more complex and less repetitive, takes a bit of getting used to, and it probably takes more listens to bring this CD alive than others out there. But it’s nonetheless satisfying when you do, especially as it’s got a unique feeling while still appealing to your strongest metal heart.

The music is solidly played, and the production is strong and clear. The band tackles lyrical subjects like the Highlander(“Eternal eyes”), celtic mythology (the title track), 300 and its historyand myths (“Dine in hades”), and similar topics of heroism, mythology, gloryand... pretty much all the good stuff. Give it a few extra listens, and this excellent CD will most likely grow on you, and end up making you feel like you made a very worthwhile purchase.




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