Days of Rising Doom
~reviewed by Joel Steudler
So... Aina. Well, I'll say this. They sure didn't hold anything back when making Days of Rising Doom. It's as if they ('they' being the 72 million musicians that make up this bloated super-group's guest star list) decided that it was all going in. ALL of it. Every shred of power metal nuance and character, every cliche, every single molecule of Powermetalium that they could find. In fact, the whole periodic table of Power Metal elements is in here. It is ALL contained in the distendedly swollen monolith of a rock opera that is Days of Rising Doom. And it's even occasionally sort of good... but mostly, it's rehashed ideas glorified to epic proportions.
I'll point out that I didn't even get to listen to it all. The promo sent for review contained a scant 68 minutes of its boundless expanse. Thank goodness. I couldn't have handled it otherwise. You know, I'm making it sound as if this album is some misbegotten abomination, and it's not. Not totally. Perhaps by telling you what's in it, I can illuminate the source of my chagrin.
First, you have the story. I don't know what the story is, due to my incomplete promo... but it involves maidens, and a siege, and rebellions... read the track list. You'll get the idea. So, to tell this story, you need a dozen wailin' powermetal singers of various pedigree. Michael Kiske is inovlved, so it wins some points there. Lots of other singers, male and female. Then you need bouncy powermetal guitar riffs, and some rockin' rocker riffs of rock, too. Check. Add to that synthesizers and synth orchestra, and perhaps some real orchestra, and other various instruments of various ethnic origins, and the sound is starting to round out. Now, toss in a children's choir (perhaps the album's only real original element). Finally, with that magnificent array of talent assembled and primed to go, hand them a massive stack of standard issue, generic power-prog rock opera songs, and have at it!
Fans of the modern powermetal scene will
probably like this alot. You Edguy and Hammerfall fanatics, devotees
of At Vance and Dionysus... the brothers in true metal... you'll all find
much to enjoy here. It is possible that fans of Savatage and their
offshoot Trans Siberian Orchestra will also like Days of Rising Doom
if they can stand the trappings of the powermetal genre. Perhaps
I've just been too saturated with music that sounds essentially just like
this to really appreciate it. Why, though, would you bother collecting
such a vast array of top notch musicians and produce so many utterly banal
songs that don't have an original or exciting note in them? I wouldn't
do that if I were in charge... and I won't listen to it, since I -am- in
charge of turning this off and relegating it to my massive stack of 'promos
that will never see the light of day again'.
Or 30+ at any rate.
Here are some of them:
The End Records (US):