Rating:
9.2
Ancient Bards - The Alliance Of The Kings
26 February 2010


01. Prelude
02. The Birth Of Evil
03. Four Magic Elements
04. Only The Brave
05. Frozen Mind
06. Nightfall In Icy Forest
07. Lode Al Padre
08. Daltor The Dragonhunter
09. Farewell My Hero
10. Faithful To Destiny


An Italian symphonic power band with lyrical themes pertaining to swords, monarchies, and magic, sound familiar? Don't be too hasty in your judgements, as what Ancient Bards do differently to the likes of Rhapsody Of Fire and Luca Turilli is be led by a female vocalist, and let me make it abundantly clear, vocalist Sara Squadrani is an incredible singer. Her vocals in tandem with the brilliant guitar, keyboard AND bass solo's make for an incredible debut album.

The album starts off with a prelude which is your typical story setting introduction, but then as soon as that's over you're treated to "The Birth of Evil" which is sung incredibly well by Sara, and you instantly fall in love with the band (on the basis of one song, yes!) and if that wasn't enough to have you sell your soul to the band, then the solo surely will leave you with your mouth agape, twin guitar and fast keyboard melodies are the order of the day and it's done amazingly well, reminiscent of Italian counterpart Labyrinth.

It's quite hard to believe the band are all relatively new to the Symphonic scene. Being formed in 2006 by Daniele Mazza (keyboards) and Martino Garattoni (bass) they searched for more band members and 3-4 years later, here we are. Their songwriting ability is absolutely superb, for reference, check out "Daltor the Dragonhunter," where during a cinematic like monologue, Daltor (presumably) speaks about slaying the dragon.

Undoubtedly, there will be those critics who just shrug this band off for being Nightwish clones (because every symphonic band that's led by a female vocalist is a clone of Nightwish, didn't you know?) when in fact they sound nothing like Nightwish; in my view, they sound similar to Amberian Dawn. Aside from the unoriginal "Prelude," I can't fault this album, it was produced to a high level by Limb Music (the geniuses who work with Concerto Moon) and the songwriting is perfect for anyone who can't get enough of medieval themes and chivalry.

Listen out for: "The Birth of Evil"; "Only the Brave" and "Daltor the Dragonhunter"

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 10
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Ancient Bards
Album: The Alliance Of The Kings


 


written by Luneth | 08.12.2010


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



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Zmaj Ognjeni Vuk - 10.12.2010 at 12:14  
Score of 9.2 made it obvious that this is a guest review.
Ain't it a bit too much for a Rhapsody clone with a female vocal? Can't agree that she's incredible, IMHO, her voice is quite plain.
RavenKing - 10.12.2010 at 23:29  
Written by Zmaj Ognjeni Vuk on 10.12.2010 at 12:14

Score of 9.2 made it obvious that this is a guest review.
Ain't it a bit too much for a Rhapsody clone with a female vocal? Can't agree that she's incredible, IMHO, her voice is quite plain.


It is indeed way too high for a band that is basically a blatant rip-off of old Rhapsody in all departments, the only small difference being the use of a female vocalist (as if this, in itself, is anything new from symphonic metal bands - the scene is overcrowded by female-fronted bands at the moment) with a voice I find plain and dull.
Imo, it borrows so much from Rhapsody (reading their lyrics and song titles, it is impossible not to draw a link between both) that I wonder if Rhapsody could sue them for plagiarism.

This album deserves zero in the originality department, by the way. It is indeed no more than a Rhapsody clone.
Luneth - 14.12.2010 at 00:31  
Written by RavenKing on 10.12.2010 at 23:29

Written by Zmaj Ognjeni Vuk on 10.12.2010 at 12:14

Score of 9.2 made it obvious that this is a guest review.
Ain't it a bit too much for a Rhapsody clone with a female vocal? Can't agree that she's incredible, IMHO, her voice is quite plain.


It is indeed way too high for a band that is basically a blatant rip-off of old Rhapsody in all departments, the only small difference being the use of a female vocalist (as if this, in itself, is anything new from symphonic metal bands - the scene is overcrowded by female-fronted bands at the moment) with a voice I find plain and dull.
Imo, it borrows so much from Rhapsody (reading their lyrics and song titles, it is impossible not to draw a link between both) that I wonder if Rhapsody could sue them for plagiarism.

This album deserves zero in the originality department, by the way. It is indeed no more than a Rhapsody clone.


It's difficult to move on in metal if people like you keep talking about these old exhausted bands. Alliance of Bards could be the future, think of it like that.
RavenKing - 14.12.2010 at 01:10  
Written by Luneth on 14.12.2010 at 00:31

Written by RavenKing on 10.12.2010 at 23:29

Written by Zmaj Ognjeni Vuk on 10.12.2010 at 12:14

Score of 9.2 made it obvious that this is a guest review.
Ain't it a bit too much for a Rhapsody clone with a female vocal? Can't agree that she's incredible, IMHO, her voice is quite plain.


It is indeed way too high for a band that is basically a blatant rip-off of old Rhapsody in all departments, the only small difference being the use of a female vocalist (as if this, in itself, is anything new from symphonic metal bands - the scene is overcrowded by female-fronted bands at the moment) with a voice I find plain and dull.
Imo, it borrows so much from Rhapsody (reading their lyrics and song titles, it is impossible not to draw a link between both) that I wonder if Rhapsody could sue them for plagiarism.

This album deserves zero in the originality department, by the way. It is indeed no more than a Rhapsody clone.


It's difficult to move on in metal if people like you keep talking about these old exhausted bands. Alliance of Bards could be the future, think of it like that.


My answer will probably take you by surprise but I know what you mean by "these old exhausted bands". There is nothing to expect from many old PM bands and it has been like that for a long time already. Most of them are moving away from metal with each new album, anyway.

And, if you mean a band like Ancient Bards could be more the future than some old Powermetal bands, I believe I know what you mean and I agree with this point of view. However, some bands (Ancient Bards being one of them) need to develop their own identity in order to bring something great and original to the scene. Currently, they're no more than a clone but maybe they can become more.

Actually, this album is better than anything RoF released after POTD. Musically, at least. I don't like that female vocalist of them.
Milena - 30.03.2011 at 00:16  
Written by Luneth on 14.12.2010 at 00:31


It's difficult to move on in metal if people like you keep talking about these old exhausted bands.


Agreed. We, the fans, and media as well, pushed metal into subgenres, and into small envelopes of subgenres of these subgenres, and now we accuse bands, which write music cornered in the tiniest envelopes of all we could think of, of not being 'original enough'. It's like, "damn, these guys play ambient-prog-o-doomy-gloomy-darkened-to-the-point-of-suffocation-black metal, but they sound the same like the band which started ambient-prog-o-doomy-gloomy-darkened-to-the-point-of-suffocation-black metal GENRE in the first place. Why don't they bring something NEW?" Really, it's all our fault. And I don't think it's so bad to have similar bands, as long as they're awesome.
Zio - 08.04.2011 at 03:04  
Uhuh my friends Ancient Bards ^_^ ... Sincerely one of the best album ever listened, and it's the first ... The second is actually under works
The Norseman - 23.05.2011 at 16:41  
Written by RavenKing on 10.12.2010 at 23:29

This album deserves zero in the originality department, by the way. It is indeed no more than a Rhapsody clone.


I guess that all bands are clones then, as they are usually influenced by other bands. RoF are kings of their genre and maybe Ancient Bards sound a lot like them but so what? IF they are a clone, they are an awesome clone and I'm OK with it.

This album is a perfect example of how underrated sometimes albums from new bands are. If the material in this album was released by RoF it would be candidate to album of the year in its genre for sure.

You don't really need to invent a genre, you just have to be great at it and at least in this album, they were.
Vikcen - 23.05.2011 at 17:06  
Written by The Norseman on 23.05.2011 at 16:41

Written by RavenKing on 10.12.2010 at 23:29

This album deserves zero in the originality department, by the way. It is indeed no more than a Rhapsody clone.


I guess that all bands are clones then, as they are usually influenced by other bands. RoF are kings of their genre and maybe Ancient Bards sound a lot like them but so what? IF they are a clone, they are an awesome clone and I'm OK with it.

This album is a perfect example of how underrated sometimes albums from new bands are. If the material in this album was released by RoF it would be candidate to album of the year in its genre for sure.

You don't really need to invent a genre, you just have to be great at it and at least in this album, they were.


I think the only thing I like about RoF is the song "Emerald Sword" haha, i never liked the singer Fabio Lione.
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 05:11  
This is one of those cases where I admit that the band is good at what they do, but still I am forced to ask: did we really need another band in this genre? And one that sounds this unoriginal too? There are actually tons and tons of great bands in this style that all have managed to add something original to symphonic metal, whether it is a darker atmosphere, an interesting vocalist or something else, but this band is not one of them I am sorry to say. Ancient bards, I won't camping around your fire.
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 21:21  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 05:11

This is one of those cases where I admit that the band is good at what they do, but still I am forced to ask: did we really need another band in this genre? And one that sounds this unoriginal too? There are actually tons and tons of great bands in this style that all have managed to add something original to symphonic metal, whether it is a darker atmosphere, an interesting vocalist or something else, but this band is not one of them I am sorry to say. Ancient bards, I won't camping around your fire.


Or tons and tons of shit, depending how you look it hahaha
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 21:28  
Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 21:21

Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 05:11

This is one of those cases where I admit that the band is good at what they do, but still I am forced to ask: did we really need another band in this genre? And one that sounds this unoriginal too? There are actually tons and tons of great bands in this style that all have managed to add something original to symphonic metal, whether it is a darker atmosphere, an interesting vocalist or something else, but this band is not one of them I am sorry to say. Ancient bards, I won't camping around your fire.


Or tons and tons of shit, depending how you look it hahaha


What?
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 22:25  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 21:28

Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 21:21

Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 05:11

This is one of those cases where I admit that the band is good at what they do, but still I am forced to ask: did we really need another band in this genre? And one that sounds this unoriginal too? There are actually tons and tons of great bands in this style that all have managed to add something original to symphonic metal, whether it is a darker atmosphere, an interesting vocalist or something else, but this band is not one of them I am sorry to say. Ancient bards, I won't camping around your fire.


Or tons and tons of shit, depending how you look it hahaha


What?



Think, think.
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 22:27  
Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 22:25

Think, think.


The only thing I can possibly deduce from your comment is that you dislike all symphonic power metal bands. Which still makes me question the purpose of your original comment that had nothing to do with Ancient Bards. Whatever though.
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 22:31  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 22:27

Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 22:25

Think, think.


The only thing I can possibly deduce from your comment is that you dislike all symphonic power metal bands. Which still makes me question the purpose of your original comment that had nothing to do with Ancient Bards. Whatever though.


No, error. My rating for this album is 10, you can see it.

Keep thinking =).
Troy Killjoy - 23.08.2011 at 22:37  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 22:27
...

You said there's tons of good bands, he said there's tons of shit (depending on how you look at it). It's not all shit. There's just a lot of it.
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 22:38  
Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 22:31

No, error. My rating for this album is 10, you can see it.

Keep thinking =).


I don't care enough. I am as indifferent to your thoughts as I am towards this band. Now, if you'll excuse me, I am off to listen to some Kerion for a chance to hear symphonic metal done well. Good day, Sir.
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 22:42  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 23.08.2011 at 22:37

You said there's tons of good bands, he said there's tons of shit (depending on how you look at it). It's not all shit. There's just a lot of it.


Thanks for the translation

But I was contrasting Ancient Bards with symphonic bands that are actually good (because AB are boring to the extreme IMO) by mentioning that many bands in the genre manage to be original in some aspect, where as AB are not original at all, so I wasn't talking about all of the symphonic metal bands in existence.
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 22:46  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 22:38

Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 22:31

No, error. My rating for this album is 10, you can see it.

Keep thinking =).


I don't care enough. I am as indifferent to your thoughts as I am towards this band. Now, if you'll excuse me, I am off to listen to some Kerion for a chance to hear symphonic metal done well. Good day, Sir.



My comment was referred to this phrase:

Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 05:11

This is one of those cases where I admit that the band is good at what they do, but still I am forced to ask: did we really need another band in this genre? And one that sounds this unoriginal too? There are actually tons and tons of great bands in this style that all have managed to add something original to symphonic metal, whether it is a darker atmosphere, an interesting vocalist or something else, but this band is not one of them I am sorry to say. Ancient bards, I won't camping around your fire.
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 23:21  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 22:42


But I was contrasting Ancient Bards with symphonic bands that are actually good (because AB are boring to the extreme IMO) by mentioning that many bands in the genre manage to be original in some aspect, where as AB are not original at all, so I wasn't talking about all of the symphonic metal bands in existence.



I already knew it. You seems still without understanding.

Listen:

Where you say there are many, or lot , or tons, or some bands that are great for you, also i can say that there are a lot, or tons, some, or many bands that are shit in the power symphonic metal scene. Are the two points of view.


Now, it is right for you? =)
ErnilEnNaur - 23.08.2011 at 23:29  
Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 23:21

I already knew it. You seems still without understanding.

Listen:

Where you say there is many, or lot , or tons, or some bands that are great for you, also i can say that there is a lot, or tons, some, or many bands that are shit in the power symphonic metal scene. Are the two points of view.


Now, it is right for you? =)


That's a bit of a tautology, isn't it? I wasn't saying that there aren't bad bands in the genre, I even suggested that Ancient Bards were one of those shit bands and then proceeded to express my grief over the fact that they don't IMO belong to one of the many (many =/= all) bands that are in some respects original and good. It was the "depending on how you look" that threw me off, because it seemed that you suggested I had said something along the lines of all symphonic metal bands being great, which I did not say. So, if we've cleared up this misunderstanding, then I am glad, I was becoming exhausted with all the replies.
Vikcen - 23.08.2011 at 23:45  
Written by Guest on 23.08.2011 at 23:29

Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 23:21

I already knew it. You seems still without understanding.

Listen:

Where you say there is many, or lot , or tons, or some bands that are great for you, also i can say that there is a lot, or tons, some, or many bands that are shit in the power symphonic metal scene. Are the two points of view.


Now, it is right for you? =)


That's a bit of a tautology, isn't it? I wasn't saying that there aren't bad bands in the genre, I even suggested that Ancient Bards were one of those shit bands and then proceeded to express my grief over the fact that they don't IMO belong to one of the many (many =/= all) bands that are in some respects original and good. It was the "depending on how you look" that threw me off, because it seemed that you suggested I had said something along the lines of all symphonic metal bands being great, which I did not say. So, if we've cleared up this misunderstanding, then I am glad, I was becoming exhausted with all the replies.


I know that you wasn't saying that there aren't bad bands in the genre, and i knew that you suggested that Ancient Bards were one of those shit bands. And i knew that you didn't say that all symphonic metal bands are great, of course. I understood you.

It is simple:

For you there are tons and tons of great bands in the genre, and Ancient Bards there aren't in this group. Ok, no problem.

For me, there are tons and tons of shit in the genre, but Ancient Bards there aren't in this group (for me).

ErnilEnNaur - 24.08.2011 at 00:11  
Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 23:45

For me, there are tons and tons of shit in the genre, but Ancient Bards there aren't in this group (for me).




OK then. Just out of curiosity, why do you like them? I don't hear anything enjoyable at all in their music, a part from their technical and performing skills. The actual music turns me off in seconds. It'd be interesting to hear an explanation from someone who's in opposition on this. I felt the review didn't do a good job at it. Maybe you can?
Swordbearer - 24.08.2011 at 00:44  
I like them because I love symphonic metal. But the Rhapsody-ripping, annoying vocals and bad pronunciation (black crystal swerd) annoy me after a few songs. They need more time to mature and gain their own sound, of they do that, they can kick some serious ass!
Vikcen - 24.08.2011 at 19:28  
Written by Guest on 24.08.2011 at 00:11

Written by Vikcen on 23.08.2011 at 23:45

For me, there are tons and tons of shit in the genre, but Ancient Bards there aren't in this group (for me).




OK then. Just out of curiosity, why do you like them? I don't hear anything enjoyable at all in their music, a part from their technical and performing skills. The actual music turns me off in seconds. It'd be interesting to hear an explanation from someone who's in opposition on this. I felt the review didn't do a good job at it. Maybe you can?


In the main page of this album i have some comments about it.

Some of the keys:

- Mainly the singer, absolute talent, i love it.
- The choir, really very well realized.
- The keyboardist.

Almost i love all the melodies inside this album (specially the chorus), beutiful melodies, catchy melodies, in few words feeling inside them (thanks above all to the fantastic voice of Sara Squadrani).

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