ReviewsRelease the Titans – Odyssey (Self-Released)

Release the Titans – Odyssey (Self-Released)

Often the seeds of a band plant themselves small to blossom over time. Release the Titans as a Norwegian power metal outfit began as a one-man project from guitarist Paul Olsen – formerly involved in Guardians of Time for over 25 years before they dissolved in 2022. Releasing a series of singles over the past couple of years he’s slowly built interest – now expanding the lineup to a four-piece including members of Pyrrhic as well as an ex-Guardians of Time compatriot. It’s only fitting that the band is now ready to release their debut album Odyssey – a conceptual effort containing those previous eight singles along with two more tracks to flesh out this economical record that gets in and gets out in forty-two minutes.

An epic story that explores the last human alive when nuclear war and pollution destroy the Earth, forcing him to go into space, diving into a black hole, travelling to seek life, hope, and purpose while fighting off desperation and loneliness. It’s one of those journeys that sparks the imagination – gripping the listener equally with engaging power riffs, solid vocal melodies/harmonies, and plenty of glorious runs at varying mid-tempo to slightly faster templates that aim to keep the hordes hoisting high their voices (or fists) in unity. Paul possesses the right balance between tasteful licks, strong main riffs, and exquisite, neoclassical shred breaks with the right divebomb, tapping, or arpeggio runs – check out his Gus G / Yngwie Malmsteen meets Randy Rhoads/Jake E. Lee-like chops on mid-album standout “God of War”, where he receives some complimentary vocal support from Ann Kristin Eikeland. The spacious atmosphere through many cuts makes the listener feel like they are simultaneously on this outer universe journey with the character in the lyrics – as “World Ablaze” and the heavier, energetic “Horizons Beyond” illustrate best. Additional gruff, gritty voices supplement the natural mid-range oriented clean phrasing, while the rhythm section passages possess the right mechanics between appropriate main tempos and flashy double kick/ active fill work that propels the European-oriented power metal to that next dimension.

Musically Release the Titans sit in that space where Kamelot, Firewind and Iron Savior come into play, although there are some orchestration or heavier movements that also bring up acts like Evergrey and Soilwork on this record. Odyssey has a lot of promising aspects for a debut album that should be very interesting to watch now that a full lineup has been put in place.

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8.5 / 10