|Review: Phenix - Sacred Fire|
Label: Brennus Music
Year released: 2002
Genre: Heavy Metal
Review online: July 24, 2002
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Rated 4/5 (80%) (1 Vote)
I've had a bit of a hard time getting into this band. Phenix play a brand of epic melodic hard rock/metal that sometimes sound a bit doomy (but they are far from a doom band.) The album doesn't contain a lot of "rocking" moments, the priority being on more melodic, and I would go as far as to say very relaxing numbers. About half the songs clock in at 7 minutes and more, but they're good enough that they never seem to be THAT long. The guitar playing is honest but I must say there isn't much in there that really grabbed my attention, except maybe one or two solos. The riffs are pretty repetitive for the most part. Interestingly, the result is not as bad as I may have made it sound by this previous remark - the overall beat of the songs goes well with the guitar playing - just do not expect to be blown away.
The vocals are generally very good, fitting the melodic music very well and not going too much into the higher notes. There are a few moments where the vocals come out a bit shaky, but overall I liked the voice quite a bit. Yet another example that France DOES have vocalists who can sing, rather than just generate Black Metal-type screeches. ;)
This album takes a bit of getting used to, and despite a few rough edges, it's a very good debut for this melodic metal outfit. Adding a few more rockers and more "elaborate"(?) guitar riffs to the sophomore effort would definitely benefit the band... At least as far as I'm concerned. :) Some newcomers worth checking out.
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