REVIEW: THEANDRIC – “Flight Among The Tombs” [EP]
Michigan seems like an unlikely place to discover the next Iron Maiden and yet it has happened. On their new EP called Flight Among The Tombs, Theandric take the reins from legendary traditional metal bands such as Iron Maiden, Dio, Saxon, and Fates Warning crafting epic metal music replete with stellar vocals, soaring guitars, and undeniable riffs and rhythm.
The title track “Flight Among The Tombs” begins with a suspenseful baroque organ that builds tension until the drums and guitars take flight. The acceleration is short and swift as Theandric settles into a mid-paced groove. It is here we glimpse the firepower of this band. The snappy drums of Matt Voss and bass by Paul Tiseo propel the song through an extended instrumental. The beautifully melodic and highly charged solo guitars of Bill Bogue and Aaron Wienczak are superb. Just when you think this song can’t get any better, Paul starts to sing, and your jaw drops in dumbfounded amazement.
“The Battle of Sherramuir” retells the historic Scottish battle that marked a turning point in the Jacobite rebellion of the 1700s. Synths resembling bagpipes engage in Ceòl Mór (Big Music in Scottish) before the band takes the helm. The riffs are epic and noble. I love the thundering rumble of the bass leading into another fantastic pair of guitar solos. It is at this point that you start to recognize the masterful songwriting and brilliant performance of Theandric. They are making classic metal that doesn’t sound cliqued or weak.
The brooding doom of “Condemned To Death” is punishing and powerful. The heavy guitars add to the sensation of oppressive ruination. The doom gives way to a brief break in the clouds created by a triumphant section that crests like a wave before falling back into oblivion. The effect is that of witnessing the hero sacrificing for the greater good. Once again the performance of Theandric is magical.
Part of the magic of Flight Among The Tombs is the recording, mixing, and master. Tim Patalan at The Loft studios captures Theandric’s commanding performance perfectly and mixes each track with clarity. The overall mastering of Andy Patalan brings this recording to life.
The final song on Flight Among The Tombs called “Ozymandias” is my favorite. The lyrics build off the poem of the same name by English Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. The music, complete with hand drums, takes wing with a Middle Eastern melody. The valiant chorus is rousing and exalted. You can imagine the vast desert and fallen idols. I realize I may sound like a broken record, but this album is stacked with articulate and emotive guitar solos. The electrifying majesty of this song is intensified by the ripping guitar solos.
Flight Among The Tombs by Theandric is a masterpiece of traditional metal music that soars where only eagles dare. The songwriting and musical performance are exquisite. It is no exaggeration that Theandric rivals the mighty Iron Maiden in the realm of traditional metal music. Theandric aren’t a household name like Maiden, but they should be. This is fist in the air epic metal music that fans of Maiden, Dio, Helloween, and Fates Warning will love. Revel in the power and the glory of Theandric’s Flight Among The Tombs.