Luca Turilli’s Rhapsody – Ascending To Infinity (Nuclear Blast)

Monday, 25th March 2013
Rating: 8.5/10

It’s a brave new world for Luca Turilli, especially after leaving Rhapsody of Fire in 2011 to essentially recreate the essence of his former band in a new version. Now calling the band – Luca Turilli’s Rhapsody, the guitarist recorded a brand new studio album entitled Ascending to Infinity to continue the epic journey of producing glorious symphonic/power metal. I took a quick glance at the band’s website and it would seem modesty is a trait you won’t find with these guys. At the top of the page they proclaim this to be “the birth of cinematic metal,” and that’s not an exaggeration at all with this new release.

Ascending to Infinity begins with a musical interlude of techno-laced Middle Eastern sounds that quickly burst into a myriad of operatic voices. There’s no question this short instrumental track is the harbinger for what is to follow, and with that being said, the title track – “Ascending to Infinity” roars to life with a vengeance. The song is chock-full of ideas, and it’s a smorgasbord of operatic singing infused with Turilli’s bombastic fret work. The next few songs are followed up with a palette of musical ideas comprised of inspired guitar playing; lyrics filled with fantastical content and topped off with much gusto.

For some it might be a bit too much, but I expect rabid fans of the symphonic/power metal genre to fully embrace Luca Turilli’s latest sonic venture. I for one found my ears perked up from the opening moment and the songs held my interest throughout the course of this release. In some instances, the fantasy subject matter imbued in most of the compositions really kicks into high gear, specifically in songs like “Excalibur,” “Dark Fate of Atlantis” and “Clash of The Titans.” These types of lyrics are certainly hallmarks of the genre, and are fully fleshed out in the closer “Of Michael the Archangel and Lucifer Falling.” It’s the finest song on the album and it runs a whopping 16 minutes in length!

Overall though, a release of this magnitude should help to bolster Luca Turilli’s stock in the symphonic/power metal genre. His love of soundtrack composers like Hans Zimmer and Danny Elfman shine through as influences on all nine songs, and I believe this release is the closest one can get to rival the cinematic greats throughout the history of the movies. Ascending to Infinity is a winner in all areas, and I hope the guitarist keeps forging his passion for cinematic metal on future recordings.

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