Album Review: Leaves’ Eyes “Sign of the Dragonhead”

Leaves’ Eyes – Sign of the Dragon Head on AFM Records
Release Date: January 12th, 2018

I am going to be honest here, I have not listened to a lot of Leaves’ Eyes over the years. They are right in my wheel house of the kind of music I listen to, but for whatever reason they just have not held my attention. I know they changed lead singers a while back and all the controversy that followed. Luckily none of that will really influence me since I have not listened to them much.

Well I can tell you, that is about to change. This album is quite a treat. I have always loved metal bands that use celtic influences in their music and that is all over this album. There is simply not a song on this album I do not like. I am also a sucker for medieval style albums that feel like they could be part of a Lord of the Rings type movie and this album has that.

Elina Siirala’s vocals on this album are mesmerizing all the way through out. Right out of the gate on the first song “Sign Of The Dragonhead” we get a good feel for the ride this album is going to take us on. The Viking feel to the album also gets started right away.  Elina is in perfect voice and with Alexander Krull providing his signature growling vocals we are off and running. Throw in some great guitar work and you know you are about to listen to a great album.

Jomsborg” is another favorite of mine. It has a very catchy chorus and the songs has a little bit of everything in it. I love the growling vocals throughout that almost make it feel like they are singing along to that part of the song in some medieval bar.

Another one of my favorite songs is “Fairer Than The Sun“. It is a fantastic ballad that Elina is perfect on. A quick, but perfect melodic guitar solo fits nicely into the song. Elina really shows off the wide range of her voice here and we are treated to more of those celtic over tones. The mood and atmosphere of this song is really well done.

We end with the eight minute Epic “Waves Of Euphoria” giving us a good amount of growling vocals intertwined with Elinas great symphonic voice. More fantastic guitar work in the middle of the song really keeps the song moving. The solos have a dual guitar sound to them which is great. We also find some of that celtic influence kicking in on the second wave of guitar solos. All leading to a grand conclusion to the song and the album.

I must say I listen to a lot of symphonic metal and it is rare when something comes along that surprises me. This album has done that and it is fair to say I will be listen to this album quite a bit. It is really hard for me to pick out the songs I did to highlight as every song is well done. I really hope Leaves’ Eyes makes it over to the United States on this release. It would be a real treat to hear this album live. 2018 will really start off with a bang when this album is released in January.

Review Score: 4.5/5.0

Tracklisting:
01. SIGN OF THE DRAGONHEAD
02. ACROSS THE SEA
03. LIKE A MOUNTAIN
04. JOMSBORG
05. VÖLVA
06. RIDERS ON THE WIND
07. FAIRER THAN THE SUN
08. SHADOWS IN THE NIGHT
09. RULERS OF WIND AND WAVES
10. FIRES IN THE NORTH
11. WAVES OF EUPHORIA

Leaves’ Eyes:
Elina Siirala – Vocals
Alexander Krull – Vocals
Thorsten Bauer -Guitars
Pete Streit – Guitars
Joris Nijenhuis – Drums

Produced by Alexander Krull at Mastersound Studio

The cover artwork was done by Stefan Heilemann
(Lindemann, Epica. Kamelot)

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