Sorceress of Sin - ConstantineGenre: Power Metal -
After a fairly anonymous debut released last year the British outfit Sorceress of Sin unleash it all on this here sophomore record, which they call Constantine. On paper, these guys would be just your regular Nightwish inspired lady fronted power metal band with a nifty idea here and there. Constantine shows up to shove that idea where the sun’s less likely to toss its sweet ass rays. Melodic, heavy, mean as fuck on occasion and when - Sorceress willing - it befits, sweet as a posy in summer rain, Constantine shows high quality heavy power metal of the British school, not entirely unlike Power Quest and the like. The fuckers open shit out on a high fucking note with eight minute melodic monstrosity Necropolis, the chorus of which tears flesh asunder as Lisa Skinner rips her cords out.
Massacre of Meridian and Realms of Elysium follows, making a triple threat opening clocking roundabouts twenty minutes sets this album off like Hell on burning wheels. Songwriting smashing all expectations, band balling and a vocalist that will definitely not take a damn no for an answer, the thickly groove set by Constantine Kanakis’ guitars rollicking NWOBHM inspired riffage and accompanying bass groove from Tom MacLean is offset by the mighty lead work tossing sweet harmonies and flashy solos, and the powerful, melodic vocal performance. While the opening few tracks slay in every respect the album does go on to prove slightly overlong at over an hour’s runtime. The guys aren’t afraid of long epics, as proven by nine minute Until the Dawn and the twelve minute title track which closes affairs off whilst hearkening to opener Necropolis. These are the standouts, but then there is a bit of filler, and much of the album doesn’t quite manage to reach the magic height that set it off.
Sorceress of Sin manage a hectic intensity, even in the rather slow paced moments (like Dimension IV), which adds to the electrified atmosphere of the entire production. Coming through in the musicianship, which is on point through the entire album - especially Kanakis’ incredible guitars; the riffing, the solos, the furious climaxes to songs like Massacre of Meridian and Erratica, there’s so much goodness right there. The bass as well is prevalent, high in the mix, MacLean dealing heavy damage and never sitting idly by and plodding along to the riffing, instead adding his own charismatic approach. MacLean, also handling keyboards adds some colorful melodic pieces, though it is Kanakis’ guitars which take the center stage. Constantine seemed to just come out of nowhere, blasting through with conviction and intensity. The slight wavering near-ish to the end might be skippable but largely doesn’t take away from the enjoyability of the album, as it proves a more powerful listen with each replay from a band setting the stage alight as they burn in the fires of hell.
Standout tracks: Necropolis, Massacre of Meridian, Realms of Elysium