June 15, 2013 by Beldrac
Warnot – His Blood is Yours
Genre: Progressive Metal
I’m not all that familiar with the works of the Swedish Power/Progressive Metal band, Cloudscape, but readers who are might find some interest in “His Blood is Yours.” The connection lies with former Cloudscape guitarist, Björn Eliasson, whose debut album under the name Warnot might be making a few waves in a number of earholes. I haven’t given much consideration to the thought that this might be a Christian-themed album…such things doesn’t have any impact on whether I enjoy music or not anyway.
This is essentially a solo project and he’s responsible for all the instruments on the album and performs some of the vocals, he also did the recording, production, and mastering of this record. Joining him was a number of guest musicians, including Cloudscape vocalist Michael Andersson and a number of other lesser-known but clearly capable singers, some being members of the Helsingborg Choirs.
Introductions done, let’s get onto the music. In a nutshell I’d say, you should expect a Metal Opera-style album that’s a mix of Avantasia, Therion, and Ayreon. If you’re a fan of either of these bands then you should really seek this one out, the album predominantly has a quite a dark aura to it that first cloaks the album with a heavy organ and choir in the intro of “Raptures of the Deep.” At this stage it’s a straight-forward faire of Progressive Power Metal with some nice guitars playing over the rhythm section in the bridge. On “The Crow Will Die” we’re introduced to a second vocalist – a very gruff voice that stands out as a feature of this album, neither really a growl nor a shout, but a turbulent production from the deepest recesses of his voice box. The album is softened a little with female vocals which are very soulful, but isn’t over-used and only emerge towards the middle of the album, to dominate the closing track “Sirens.” The album feels very well-balanced – the use of different vocalists and ambiance in the songs certainly keeps it flowing very nicely, keeping you interested from start to finish.
The guitars on the album at times remind me a little of the grand era for Progressive Metal – the decade straddling the Millennium that saw beasts such as “Metropolis Pt.2,” “The Perfect Element,” “The Odyssey,” “The Metal Operas,” and “The Universal Migrators” unleashed onto the world. I think these albums had some influence on the sound of this album which at this stage, compares rather favourably to the mentioned however, only time will tell if I (and others) will still be listening and enjoying this album in ten years.
In all the while I’ve been listening to the album it has progressively lost most of the freshness I enjoyed at the start, but instead of stagnating it has settled in rather nicely. The variety in vocals and the consistently-strong song writing, might make this one of those old records you can go back to almost any time and enjoy, but only if Warnot continues to release good albums. Otherwise, they might also be forgotten along with so many other good Progressive Metal bands that have come and gone over the last couple of decades. If you’re in the mood for dark, theatrical, opera-style Progressive Metal, then pour some wine, have a sip, munch on some wafers if you have some lying around, and listen to this album.
My original review at TMO.