I gotta be honest: up until now I didn’t know a genre called “symphonic death metal” exists (which is pretty naive, since there is a metal genre for everything nowadays. Even math metal.), but now that I listened to Stormtide’s new record, I’ll definitely check this genre out more thoroughly.
Their new album is titled A Throne of Hollow Fire and was released on 01.03.2021 through Metal Hell Records.
The journey begins at a campfire in A Valley of Ashes. Where hauntingly beautiful melodies, played by instruments that don’t require any electricity yet, prepare you for a stunning journey, which feels highly rewarding. With A Throne of Hollow Fire the lightning and the thunder (aka the electric guitars, and the drums) set in, and the storm begins. I can hardly find fitting words for what I’m hearing. The songs are full of wrath, and yet they are incredibly majestic. Somehow live assuring, yet with a pinch of melancholy. From the title track, up until One Last Pint, I also find it hard to recognize when one song ends, and another begins. Not because they’re boring, repetitive, or similar to each other, but because they’re in “natural” order (if that makes any sense). The album is like a river that flows on its own. Steady and perfect.
I never knew at which track I’m at without watching at the tracklist. That is right until the aforementioned One Last Pint (At the Duck) starts. Not because it’s a drop in quality by any means, but because it’s a nice change of pace. And it comes just at the perfect time. It reminds me of Alestorm, but with bigger (and hairier) muscles. That song is like the short break in the tavern, before your quest continues. Maybe that is intentional, as the previous and following tracks have similar names (She Who Would Name the Stars and He Who Would Drown the Sun). After a short alcoholic break the journey continues just like it did before: With magnificent orchestral parts, and furious blast-beat and guitar-battles.
After the last song, A Warship Braved the Tempest, fades in the fire, I feel the way I feel after having finished a good book: satisfied, yet a little emptier inside. From the artwork, up to the outro, A Throne of Hollow Fire is a incredibly magnificent record. I dare anyone who likes melodic death metal (or any similar kind of metal) to listen to this album right now!
I like music. All of it. Except for schlager… And ballermann. Oh boy do I hate ballermann.