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There are some certainties in life; after rain the sun will shine, one and one makes two, the pope will always be a caricature of himself and Rhapsody of Fire will never disappoint with a new record.
A new saga begins, although this is already the second part of it. And it’s not going to be a fairytale according to the dark sphere on Triumph or Agony. Yes, you get it right; it’s not about catchy, positive melodies this time. First single ‘Triumph or Agony’ says it all. Although the sound is very recognizable, the sphere is more serious than before. Even the mightier songs on the album strengthen this idea, like ‘The Myth of the Holy Sword’ which will become a classic for sure. (Because it’s about the sword again?) Highlight of the album is the 16-minute lasting song ‘The Mystic Prophecy of the Demon Knight’ where the band presents the new saga, guided by the storyteller again.
Of course I could tell you about the fact that this album contains everything you want; faster songs, ballads, heaviness and calmness, but that’s a cliché. What I found really surprising is the fact that Rhapsody of Fire has taken a step backwards. With Symphony of the Enchanted Lands pt. II I thought they killed themselves. The sound, the choir, the orchestra, the whole project had been worked out so well that I, and with me many others I’m sure, the boundaries had been reached. And this step backwards did the band extremely good. The sound is a bit different, ok, and it’s not that bombastic but everything is so in great proportions and balanced! that I’m stunned.
This, my friends, I dare to say it, is the best record by the band so far, even if it’s not that accessible as before and even if the whole atmosphere may be different. For Rhapsody of Fire, even the sky is not the limit.