released two classic albums back in the eighties. This is their debut, simply titled Crimson Glory
. A monster debut that shows a band with absolutely huge potential. Crimson Glory
play their own Powerful and Melodic Heavy Metal with a some progressive tendencies. With a fantastic sense of melody, sharp solos, brilliant compositions and one of the most unique singers ever, Crimson Glory
stood out from the crowd back then, and today, there still isn't anybody who sounds quite like them. Though their influence can be heard in many of todays bands, Pagan's Mind and Kamelot
are just a few.
Lead singer Midnight, is in himself an experience not to be missed. He is a singer who gives himself 100%. His piercing, high pitched voice is always melodic, and capable of expressing all kinds of emotion. He gives the album a mystical atmosphere that is very special. He also keeps the album interesting, as you never know what to expect next, take fx. the insane screaming laughter introducing Dragon Lady
. Midnight has a menacing feel to his voice, which I can only compare to another of my all time favourite singers, Jon Oliva of Savatage.
opens the album on an epic note, with a heavy riff and pounding drums. The atmosphere builds as soon as Midnight's voice enters. Right then you know that this is something special. One thing shared by all songs on the album is their extremely melodic nature. While the songs are at no point simple, they are always melodic, and that is one of the strengths of this band. The songs feel very well thought out and put together.
The album has just about everything. Mayday
is a fast and furious song, where Midnight's soaring vocals and the powerful guitar attack leaves me breathless. Queen of the masquarade
is a heavy, grooving and complex song that works very well. One of my favourites is the powerful mid-tempo song Heart of Steel
. The song starts out with Midnight's voice and acoustic guitar, while some emotional guitar solos add to the atmosphere. The atmosphere builds towards the powerful chorus, completely ruled by Midnight's voice. As always, the guitar work is excellent throughout the song.
starts out slowly, with an enchanting and mystical atmosphere, before it quickly builds to another heavy monster. With a great powerful drive, this song is up there with my favourites. Angels of war
is the only song I feel falls a little short of the rest. While it does have some excellent guitar work, the chorus gets a litttle tedious at the end of the song, and overall it doesn't have the same impact as the other songs.
Just when you thought the album was finished the band pulls out a masterpiece with the final song Lost reflection
. Lost reflection
is a good example of how diverse Crimson Glory
can be. Pretty much all the way through the song consists of just an acoustic guitar and Midnight's voice, which fits perfect with the lyrics. It's a true spine chiller that shows a genius at work. What it delivers is a perfect atmosphere of a twisted mind. When the song finally let's go the powerful climax blows me away every time. A perfect song in its very own special way.
Throughout the album the guitar playing of lead guitarist Jon Drenning and Ben Jackson on rythm, is pure brilliance. The way the guitar complements Midnight's high pitched voice in perfect harmony, is like a marriage made in heaven. Melodic solos are abound and loads of little touches, where the guitar plays along, and harmonises with Midnight's voice, are just brilliant. For an example of what I'm talking about, check out the last part of Heart of Steel
. This is just one of many...
The drums could have been more interesting and have a very digital computer feel to them. But they serve their purpose well, and keep the music together, along with the clearly audible and well played bass.
The production is not the best in the world. The sound is very clear, but it misses a lot of deepness and heaviness, and feels a little thin. With a perfect production I can only begin to imagine how amazing the album could have sounded.
Unfortunately this album doesn't include lyrics, so I can't go too much into detail with that. Like I mentioned earlier most songs have a mystical quality, and there seems to an abundance of strong female characters in this universe.
There should be room for this album in any metal fan's collection. With many great songs and a few classics, the album still holds up today, but it is not quite on quite the same level as the ingenious follow up, Transcendence.
of Steel, Azrael, Lost Reflection
Written by Steen
Sunday, June 1, 2003Show all reviews by SteenRatingsSteen: 8/10
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