Released by: Independent
Release Date: Out Now!!!
Genre: Progressive Thrash Metal
Ivan Ivanov – Vocals
Stan “Stumpy” Stancheff – Vocals; Guitars
Antonio Mitov – Bass
Velizar Bolchev – Drums
01. Dreams Of Pale
02. The Deepest Fear
04. For One Moment In Time
06. Inner Sight
07. Endless Horizon
08. God’s Sun Hours
09. Solar Messiah
10. The Day Of No Return
11. Palette Of Grey
Wartime is Bulgarian band which plays Progressive Thrash Metal with some influences of Power and Melodic Death Metal. They are not newcomers, the band was founded about 15 years ago and since recorded 3 demo EPs and 2 full-length discs. The last work of this band “Solar Messiah” was released on the 15th of December 2012.
The new album is full of technical aggressive riffs, beautiful guitar solos, wonderful melodies and varied vocal lines. It’s hard to name the similar bands but some influences of late Death, Arch Enemy and even Symphony X could be heard here. I could also compare it with Manticora though Wartime is more brutal and complex.
The band uses different vocal types, the clean voice is dominant here but there are many growls which are not used only as back up. The high lead vocal (performed by Ivan Ivanov) is similar to Lars Larsen of Manticora with the same slightly hysterical and sad notes.
The music is amazing and awesome. Each track is complicated and diverse and has a lot of different melodies and structures. Some epic and acoustic elements help to create a unique atmosphere.
Opening track Dreams of Pale gives a good presentation to the album’s sound. It is powerful, fast, varied and melodic. The Deepest Fear is brighter and slightly more oriental. Violin is used in calm instrumental track Sanity. Memories starts with acoustic intro but then speeds up and turns into with wonderful almost Melodic Power Metal song. Inner Sight goes on in the same vein with more MeloDeath influences. Both great tracks and among the best on the album. The other highlights are title track Solar Messiah with some oriental moments and final Palette of Grey full of brilliant technical and melodic tunes.
I would like to highlight outstanding guitar solos by Stan Stanchev, they are very melodic, catchy and technical and remind me the work of Amott brothers from Arch Enemy. Bass lines are strong though they are slightly on the background. Drum parts are also well done and conforms to high standards of Progressive Metal. The production is decent; all instruments are well balanced in the mix.
Personally I could only criticize vocals a little bit because despite of all variety I prefer other types of voices. But anyway vocals here are rather unique. So “Solar Messiah” is an excellent album, original, intellectual and technical. It properly combines skillful musicianship, heaviness and bright melodies. It certainly should be heard to all fans of Progressive/Technical Thrash and Melodic Death Metal.
Written by Egor “EG Power”
Ratings Egor 9/10
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