Ulterium Records [Release date 28.11.14]
It’s probably not a good idea to release albums a month or so before Christmas: they tend to get lost in the festivities and almost certainly miss out in best of year selections. Which is a shame for Harmony and their third album.
The band formed in 2000 and the debut came out in 2002. For a time Markus Sigfridsson (guitars) and Tobias Enbert (drums) worked in the band Darkwater but later got back to making Harmony, and all the better for it. Daniel Heiman (ex-Lost Horizon, Heed) has provided vocals as he did for the band’s second album in 2008.
Melodic metal is, to be true, a crowded market and whilst it has to be said ‘Theatre Of Redemption’ offers nothing wildly original it is very well done and engaging.
The opener ‘The Window Of My Soul’ has a power metal flavour but sets the tone – if not always the pace – for the rest of the album. Diving and dipping keys, shredding guitar and excellent vocals. And all grounded in solid rifferama and using orchestral textures for atmosphere. There’s even a killer ballad in the shape of ‘You Are’.
The album will appeal to lovers of melodic and power metal certainly. Last year we elevated Code Of Silence in our end of year selections and this could be the second album they never made.
The highlight has to be the title track and whilst the riff is somewhat familiar, the song is elevated by some great harmonies and the deft use of funk guitar chords providing a late fillip. I guarantee this song will work its way inexorably into your frontal cortex after one or two plays.
There are nods to genre heavyweights like Stratovarius and even the likes of their Swedish compatriots Coldspell but overall there’s enough here to attract listeners on their own terms. ****
Review by David Randall
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