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Amazing technicality, but weak vocals at times - 84%

Mr Matt, March 12th, 2018
Written based on this version: 2005, Independent

Lorenguard is probably my favorite underground power metal band right now. I am very impressed with "Of Tales To Come" because of its amazing technicality, and that it's heavy, yet it's kind of... dolce (in music terms) for most of the EP. Kind of like Kamelot's "Siege Perilous". A little like that, except more fiery.

There were some really good riffs. The sound for it could have been better (let's admit), but I loved it. The speed due to the choice of rhythm and tempo makes it faster than most power metal I've heard, and that's really saying something. If you're wondering what I mean, just listen to the first minute or so of "Siege Of Celendas", particularly the beginning riff. The speed the guitarist picked can make anyone go, "Whoa! Dragonforce ain't got nothing on this band!" I just couldn't help but think Dragonforce and Rhapsody (of Fire) as I listened to "Of Tales To Come". Imagine this EP re-recorded, kind of like what Rhapsody (of Fire) did with the "Legendary Years" album, with the new sound Lorenguard had in "Eve Of Corruption". That would sound amazing.

One thing that really caught my ear was the classically-inspired trem-picked lick in "Siege Of Celendas" in-between verses and other places. (I'm sure you'll figure out what it is if you listen to it). That kind of neo-baroque lick has been used a lot in power metal, but I've never heard it trem-picked and it stands out to me for some reason here. It just grabs me I guess. I actually tried it on the guitar myself and it worked, which made me love it even more. The guitar solos on "Of Tales To Come", I noticed, have influences from Yngwie Malmsteen (obviously), the Dragonforce guitarists (Herman Li and Sam Totman), and Luca Turilli (Rhapsody (of Fire). I really like this blend of style.

My only complaint so far is something about the high notes in the vocals. When the vocalist sings the high notes (high notes are a staple in power metal), it just sounds kind of weak. The vocalist should practice hitting those high notes with sheer vocal power rather than falsetto. Have you ever listened to "Seasons" by Dragonforce? Remember that towards the last part of the song where Marc Hudson just lets it all out (the notes he hit were F, A-flat, G)? Yeah, the vocal part of this album needs that kind of power. Doing this will sustain that intensity in the songs. The selection of notes is perfect, but there needs to be more power in the execution of those notes.

In closing, it's sad that this band is on-hold as of writing this review, but as for "Of Tales To Come", this is part of what has made Lorenguard my favorite lesser-known power metal band. I have high hopes.