The Chronicles Project
The Chronicles Project – When Darkness Falls (2015)
Power metal opera
The Chronicles Project is an international cooperation of musicians from Europe that started out as an onlne, youtube collab request in 2011 and ended up in a studio for recording the first album of what is meant to become a series of metal operas. Best known member of the musicians is probably Andi Kravljaca, Roy Khan’s predecessor in Kamelot, lately involved in Silent Call and Aon Zen.
01. Prologue: Our Souls
03. Void Of The Damned
04. The Last Embrace
05. A Dangerous Journey
06. Into Infinity
07. Interlude I: The Confession
08. When Darkness Falls
10. My Revolution
11. Interlude II: Release Me
12. The Dark Symphony
13. Promised Lands
14. Until You’re Mine
15. Conclusion: Still Alive
16. Chronicles Of A Strange Mind (CD Bonus)
When Darkness Falls
I was hooked by the opening track Forever instantly, as there are distinct similarities to Roy-Khan-era Kamelot. I think this is due to Vasilis Georgiou’s vocals, which are very like Khan’s in timbre and expression. This opening track is a real killer, you can hear it in the video below.
On Into Infinity you can hear Kamelot shine through again rather well. A comparison to Rhapsody comes to mind as well, though this here is less laden with symphonic elements. The whole albums is a melodic symphonic power metal blast. And sufficiently heavy too to justify the metal opera tag. The drums blast away fine, and the guitars lay down some mighty rhythmic power chords. Vocals are power metal alright, except maybe for the female part, filled in by Patricia Romera Holgado, who has a soft, brilliant voice, but can reach up high as well. The guitar solos and keyboard parts also show a lot of talent.
Before I start raving, there are some points on the downside. Like the length of the album. The musical ideas and compositions in here could easily have been compressed into a shorter essence, for some songs and passages it seems there was not much creativity left, and that the songs were drawn out by the need to fit in all the lyrics. These lyrics are not without a certain amount of cheese. And some tracks could have been left out altogether, as they are no more than filler material. As such completely unnecessary, the album has a running lengths of well over an hour as it is. The Dark Symphony is such a track for instance, I guess it is vital for the story telling though.
Because there’s a story behind it all – I haven’t got to the bottom of it yet, just gathered there’s some angels trying to collect souls to bring to the Gods and fighting against some evil power, who wants to snatch the souls away – therefore some tracks are introduced by a sonorous sounding narrator, very comforting, very nice.
I come to the conclusion again that I don’t like Andi Kravljaca’s voice and that it always sounds slightly off pitch to me. Whereas Vassilis Georgiu is a revelation and I am busy checking out his band Dark Fate right now. Ivan Ravaioli not only reminds me of Italian food but is also an extremely talented guitar player who did his share to make this album what it is.
I guess this album can become a favorite for fans of say, Avantasia or other metal operas, symphonic power metal, the bands I already mentioned or any other similar band. By the way, I can’t leave the one metal opera unmentioned, that I really like and that is Soulspell, brought together by Heleno Vale, three albums deep so far and featuring a truly amazing Amanda Somerville and Blaze Bayley amongst many many others.
Ok, back to this Chronicles Project opera, let’s round it off with some music
Get The Chronicles Project music here:
Contributors to the Chronicles Project:
Andi Kravljaca (vocals), SWE
Dave Esser (narrator/vocals), GER
Ivan Ravaioli (guitars), ITA
Malte Rathke (keys), GER
Martino Garattoni (bass), ITA
Patricia Romera Holgado (vocals), ESP
Rob Lundgren (vocals), SWE
Sam Tickner (drums), UK
Vasilis Georgiou (vocals), GRE