Armory - Dawn Of Enlightenment
Epic Power Metal
12 songs (69'49)
Release year: 2007
Reviewed by Marty
Album of the month
Armory hails from Massachusetts, U.S.A. and had released Dawn Of Enlightenment previously in 2004. Not happy with the production quality, the band has spent the best part of the last 3 years completely re-recording the entire album with keyboardist Peter Rutcho (Blistered Earth) not only overseeing the production but adding keyboards as a new full time member of the band. Rounding out the line-up is the twin guitar attack of Chad Fisher and Joe Kurland (who also played drums on this entire album); Joe's brother Adam Kurland on vocals as well as bassist Thomas Preziosi and drummer Tom Vieira. Keeping it all in the family, Joe and Adam Kurland's brother Jason also helps out with the lyrics and backing vocals. Sounding very wise beyond their years, Armory plays a brand of classic European flavored power metal that draws influences from Helloween, Edguy, Dragonforce as well as a healthy dose of Iron Maiden with epic "true metal" Manowar style lyrics. This album is just bursting with vocal melodies and boasts some of the best melodic and harmonized lead guitar work than I've ever heard by any band period.

After The Tempest, a short orchestrated march-style intro, we get to the meat really quickly with Faith In Steel. Immediately, the speedy Helloween, Edguy, Dragonforce style jumps right out with it's riffs and harmonies and really reminds of the Theater Of Salvation era of Edguy. Adam Kurland even has Tobias Sammett like elements to his voice. The quality continues with every track on this album, mixing epic mid tempo passages with speedier ones and the abundance of muted riffs and harmonies offers the power metal fan a truly exciting and amazing listening experience. Forever Triumphant is the band's version of a huge epic power ballad along the lines of Hammerfall's Glory To The Brave. With a big "gang" chorus and trumpeting keyboard sounds, this all works very well within the framework of the song. Galloping Maiden style riffs propel Heart Of Dreams and the abundance of harmony leads and lead fills along with extended instrumental passages once again reminds me of the Theater Of Salvation era of Edguy. Warrior Forlorn, The Eyes Of Time and Mystic Star are all strong and speedy tracks with amazing lead guitar and keyboard work that really brings bands like Power Quest to mind. Forged In Dragon Flames sees more of a riff driven metal style, highlighted by some very technical riffing and lead guitar work in a killer instrumental track. The title track Dawn Of Enlightenment is the band's foray into lengthy epic power metal with a 13 minute track that features thematic riffing, lots of atmospheric interludes/tempo changes and a huge dramatic sense that also sees influences from Iron Maiden and Queensryche with some Geoff Tate vocal styles by Adam Kurland. As bonus tracks, we get a very solid cover of Iron Maiden's Flight Of Icarus as well as a little instrumental snippet Dr. Wiley from a Nintendo game; showing the band's fondness for the melodies found in many of the Nintendo games.

For a first album, this is very, very impressive. Armory sounds tight and very professional and even though they really don't offer up anything all that new in the genre, they do it extremely well and with a twin guitar attack that is as good as any in the business. Chad Fisher in particular has mastered both the technical and melodic aspects of lead guitar, providing seemingly endless lead guitar work that flows perfectly through this band's sound. The sound production is solid and very state of the art and more importantly, they have a very strong vocalist; a weak point with many power metal bands. Even though this album is self-released, I doubt that they will be without a label deal for very long. This is quite simply one of the best "pure" power metal albums that I've heard in a very long time. A must buy for fans of the genre.

Check out their Myspace page

Killing Songs :
Faith In Steel, Riding The Cosmic Winds, Heart Of Dreams, Forged In Dragon Flames and Dawn Of Enlightenment
Marty quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Armory that we have reviewed:
Armory - Empyrean Realms reviewed by Joel and quoted 91 / 100
3 readers voted
You did not vote yet.
Vote now

There are 18 replies to this review. Last one on Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:49 pm
View and Post comments