Folk Power Metal
Fantasy, Life, Death
Origin Formed in Current label Status
Italy (Bergamo, Lombardy) 1999 Fuel Records Active
Ivan Dellamorte - Keyboards & Vocals
Luca Arzuffi - Lead Guitar
Claudio Arsuffi - Rhythm Guitar
Xavier Rota - Bass
Edo - Drums
Jonathan Spagnuolo - Lead Vocals
Kaste - Lead Vocals
Dibo - Keyboards
Mattia - Drums
Alberto Baldi - Drums
The band has recently introduced some folk elements in the new compositions, but still keeps its classic power metal style.
Ray of Time Demo, 2004
Horns Of Silence Full-length, 2007 [1 review, 95%]
SpellBlast are a folk influenced power metal band hailing from Italy and formed in 1999, but only released their first demo "Ray Of Time" in 2004, which received quite a fair reception selling 500 copies. Now in early 2007 the band has signed to Metal Crusade Records and has now unleashed their first full-length album "Horns Of Silence" onto the world to show us what they are made of.
The album grabs our attention with the first track "In The Name Of Odin" with a flurry of double bass drumming in true power metal style and then the chorus shows the more folk-influenced side of the band, this formula stays true for pretty much the whole album. Damnagoras from Elvenking appears with his vocals for the first time on "Lost In The Forest" which fits in well with the bands music. Obvious comparisons can be made between the music of SpellBlast and Elvenking, both sporting the same style and flying the flag for Italy.
The longest song on the album "Glory To The Gem" at seven and a half minutes is one of the highlights of the album being followed by the most folk influenced song on the album "Goblins' Song". The album seems to get stronger towards the end especially with "Sign Of The Unicorns" which has to be the best song on this album; you cannot help but smile when it starts with such bombastic energy. The last two tracks are also highly enjoyable and leave the impression on you that you must listen to the album again once it has finished.
The main criticism I have for the album is that in some places it might be lacking that extra bit of power, those extra up-tempo double bass drums that could possibly have made it all that bit more enjoyable just aren't there. Of course this also means that when we are treated to some, it sounds much better and more powerful then if we were spoiled with high-tempo double bass and were used to hearing it.
To summarize, this album is a fairly solid power metal album with bits of folk in there in places and is an all round good, enjoyable album to listen to that has many highlights - "Sign Of The Unicorns" and "Knights Of Darkness" being the songs that shine most. This wont be last time we hear of SpellBlast, highly recommended to all Elvenking fans and also recommended for power/folk metal fans all around.
You can also hear a fair few tracks with the media player on the band's official website here, and the band's myspace site here.
In an extremely bizarre twist of fate, the UK had their first taste of Italian fantasy metallers Spellblast before they had even released this, their debut full length, at the increasingly popular Bloodstock festival last year. Unfortunately I don't think it took off as well as they thought it might, but hopefully this will all change with the release of "Horns of Silence", a masterfully executed release of uniquely structured melodic power metal. Taking their cues from medieval-garbed warriors of metal such as The Storyteller, Thy Majestie and Elvenking, Spellblast distinctively blend melodic speed metal with stylised folk, without overstepping the boundaries of orchestration overload.
In structure rather than sound, the songs themselves are reminiscent of latter-period Blind Guardian, particularly "A Twist in the Myth", where the tracks are spawned from an initial idea and expand into a latticework of influence and melodious accomplishment. Aside from the rather typical, yet expertly performed vocal stylings, Spellblast's sound owes a lot to Blind Guardian and to a lesser extent Savage Circus. The fantasy element to their lyrics is overtly flamboyant, which I believe adds another dimension of enjoyment to the already perfected musical formula. At times, with the often plodding, violin-led folky polka segments, people may think this a little too D&D metal as it were, and probably won't take it seriously, which I'm sure was the intention in the first place. Every track on "Horns of Silence" has something new to offer, whether it is the sweeping majesty of "Sign of the Unicorn" or the growing incursion of regal delights in the ultra-catchy "Glory to the Gem". Spellblast have a finger in every power metal pie here, and mix them together to create a very tasty slice indeed.
Elvenking vocalist Damnagoras offers his vocal talents to a couple of tracks, "Lost in the Forest" amongst others, and due to the slick production of Stefanini Luigi and the band themselves, the songs sound huge without needing epic choirs or cod symphonics. The percussion in particular is inspired, utilising every inch of the kit without spending too much time snapping the feet – although there is an archetypal use of the kick drums here – and the guitar work is of a standard typical of third or perhaps even fourth release quality. With tracks like "Goblin's Song", "Legend of the Ice Wolf" and the Dark Moor-tinged "Losing Reality", Spellblast have created possibly the best power metal debut of the year, one that will appeal to any outstanding fan of catchy, hook-laden fantasy metal, who wouldn't mind spending an hour around the fire with the dwarves, elves and goblins. Let's fill up those mead horns, men, we have a journey to undertake!