Rhapsody of Fire – Challenge the Wind Review

Behold Metal fans everywhere in this sad and lonely and pathetic little planet. Here comes one of the most awaited albums of the year from the band whose influence is felt in eleven of ten Power Metal bands. The band that reshaped its own style. A band whose music can be felt in almost all Power Metal bands in this sad and lonely and pathetic little planet. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Rhapsody of Fire with “Challenge the Wind,” their latest battle against the wind.

Ok, first of all, if you don’t like Rhapsody of Fire “Challenge the Wind” won’t change your mind because it’s inch by inch a Rhapsody of Fire album with very few changes. After all, one of the band’s motto is don’t mess with success. It’s all there. Songs based on medieval times with lots of swords and battles and fantastic creatures. The fantastic is just the element the band just loves and that’s it. Musicwise, “Challenge the Wind” is faster and heavier than Rhapsody of Fire’s previous albums. That’s a change. There are very few prominent keyboards here. They don’t take the lead. My dear dear child of the night might notice it by album welcomer and tittle track “Challenge the Wind.” Fast as hell guitar licks with an acid voice of vocalist Giacomo Voli.  The track is truely an album welcomer. An instant classic. Vocalist Giacomo Voli uses at the max his acid verve of his voice. Just take a look at “Vanquished by Shadows” where he manages his most acid voice with all the technique and melody he has. The track is almost only guitars, bass and drums. I said almost. Of course, in the sixteen minutes length of it many things shift, but the track is heavy, very heavy. I’d say it’s a surprise because when one looks at a Rhapsody of Fire’s sixteen minute song the first thing that comes to mind is operatic voices, classical music arrangements and all. Not what happens here. It’s not a comeback because their early albums showed exactly what I said before. Following track “Kreel’s Magic Staff” doesn’t change a bit the mood of the album commencing with a great guitar pick showing why the masters are the masters. Only “A Brave New Hope” breaks a little the guitar mayhem of the album. But just its initial moments.

The thing is “Challenge the Wind” shows Rhapsody of Fire in their finest moment. The album is a lesson to all copicats, and there are so many of them. Why listen to a generic band if the original is still there playing Metal at its best. “Challenge the Wind” also proves if even Rhapsody of Fire can show how unpredicted Power Metal can be all their followers can be as well. Another lesson is to never underestimate a legend.

Rhapsody of Fire “Challenge the Wind” will be released on May 31st via AFM Records.

Track Listing:

  1. Challenge the Wind
  2. Whispers of Doom
  3. The Bloody Pariah
  4. Vanquished by Shadows
  5. Kreel’s Magic Staff
  6. Diamond Claws
  7. Black Wizard
  8. A Brave New Hope
  9. Holy Downfall
  10. Mastered by the Dark

Watch official music video here: