Ruins of Elysium – Amphitrite: Ancient Sanctuary in the Sea (Self-Released)

Wednesday, 10th February 2021
Rating: 8.5/10

An adventure named for the Greek Goddess of the oceans, this international outfit Ruins of Elysium contains members from Brazil, Italy, and Norway – and with their third full-length Amphitrite: Ancient Sanctuary in the Sea delivers a twelve-track odyssey that takes a symphonic metal base to left field dimensions. Incorporating a global perspective, you’ll get to hear ethnic elements/instruments against the operatic, cinematic, and normal metal conventions – ensuring an aural landscape that is dynamic, bombastic, emotionally engaging, with numerous passes necessary to absorb all the vocal/musical aspects that shape this material.

Track to track you can take in everything from New Age soundscapes to Brazilian, Middle Eastern, Japanese, or Celtic / folk passages – all depending on what atmosphere these musicians wish to create in a specific arrangement. When the band chooses to push a speedier sheen with broader strokes, the extreme blast beats and tremolo-oriented guitar licks within “Belladonna” get the energy flow at peak performance, main tenor vocalist Drake Chrisdensen airy throughout the verses in his carefully majestic delivery. The orchestration sits in tandem against the guitars, bass and drums – creating a hypnotic, alluring texture to the 7:41 “Leviathan”, while the acoustic guitar intro mainframe and subsequent Celtic/folk metal measures make “Book of Seals” a latter highlight, the operatic choir parts adding more drama to the proceedings. African chants and cultural themes penetrate “The Ocean Is Yemanja’s”, the vocals often matching the rhythms to provide this tribal nature – while the finale “Canzone Del Mare (Cancão Do Mar)” contains the tranquil to uplifting rollercoaster nature you would expect in an epic, almost nine-minute ending. It’s evident that Ruins of Elysium take influence from Kamelot, Nightwish, and even Therion in spots – but tend to emphasize cinematic grandeur and splendor, which could cause some to tap out due to the 73-minute plus timeframe.

Ruins of Elysium leave nothing to chance on this record – doing their best to capture their creativity and execute it through the broadest strokes, pushing every sound or instrument necessary to deliver exactly what they envision. Who would have thought that symphonic metal could include diverse elements from other continents boiled down into a passionate, moving record – and that’s what you’ll hear and more for Amphitrite: Ancient Sanctuary in the Sea.

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