As I listened to "Symphony of Enchanted Lands" for the first time back in 1998, I realized that this band was like a dream come true. With huge sweeping melodies, powerful music and the songwriting skills to take it all to a higher level they lived up to the "Hollywood Metal" sticker on the cover. I was seriously excited and had the album on repeat for many months. The overwhelming music makes me look past any other shortcomings Rhapsody may have. Emerald Sword opens with a blast and never looks back, as the listener is swept up in a whirlwind of thunderous music. Fabio Lione's voice has the strength needed to rise above the music and it is his phrasings that make the melodies work beyond the expected. Keyboard and guitar work together in a complete union here. A Rhapsody song done right is an exhilarating rush of excitement and this one is done right.
As of 2013, the band has inexplicably split into two bands with the same name (I still refuse to acknowledge the incredibly silly "Of Fire" addition to the original band name). Emerald Sword is from their second album and without a doubt a great place to start discovering what was, and still is, the epitome of fantasy power metal.
Written By Steen
Online: Monday, November 4, 2013