ETERNAL IDOL – The Unrevealed Secret

eternal_idol-the_unrevealed_secretWhen a band takes its name from such a brilliant album as Black Sabbath’s Eternal Idol (1987), I just have to check it out. But my interest faded some after a quick read of the press release. It turns out that Eternal Idol is formed by one Fabio Lione, once the lead singer of Rhapsody Of Fire, Labyrinth and Angra among others. See, I’m slightly allergic to sword and sorcery fantasy power metal bands such as the ones mentioned. Maybe I come off as pretentious saying this, but I just can’t seem to take the overblown and beyond bombastic music and image taken straight out of a Tolkien story seriously. But on the other hand, Eternal Idol is a new chapter in Lione’s book of metal and I guess it wouldn’t be fair to judge his new project without even giving it a shot just because of his past. On this journey, Lione have brought with him musicians that have got fuck-o to do with his past bands. Guitarist, keyboard player and co-writer Nick Savio, bassist Camillo Collelouri and female lead vocalist Giorgia Collelouri comes from Hollow Haze and bassist Andrea Buratto was brought in from Secret Sphere (another power metal act I’m not overly impressed with) and Hell In The Club, all bands (except Secret Sphere) I have never even heard of before. And since Lione has described his new band as a mix of classic metal and symphonic rock with a few progressive twists – a new sound that might surprise people, he states – makes my interest in this band climb back up a few notches.

Opener “Evil Tears” is a really nice surprise. The lack of pure power metal is to me a very good thing. Instead they give us an uptempo pop-metal tune, pretty straight forward with a great, catchy melody – a song that sure brings hope for the rest of the album. First single “Another Night Comes” shows traces of modern-day Nightwish and rocks in a mid-tempo pace. The chorus is very distinct and goes right for the throat – it’s extremely catchy and feels like a hit right away. The single “Awake In Orion” is big, pompous, musical-like and big on orchestration. It has a melody that searches its way right into the brain right off the bat and the chorus stays there forever – a very good choice for a single. “Is The Answer Far From God” comes in a more hard rock than metal arrangement. This one too has a (modern) Nightwish influence although the song is more straight forward and not as progressive as the Finns. It also comes with a brilliant refrain so it’s not a wild guess that this one will end up a single as well. The gothic sounding “Blinded” is more on the mediocre side and feels a bit redundant, to be honest. It’s not bad but it doesn’t stick either. “Sad Words Unveiled” is raises the quality, much better than “Blinded”. The song is big, pompous and bombastic, quite symphonic but with a big pop feel and a classic hard rock influence.

The following “Desidia” is slow, dark and atmospheric, but at the same time, the melody is very pop and so is the chorus – very catchy. “Hall Of Sin” starts out as an acoustic ballad but soon turns into a quite dramatic power metal tune. It’s ok, but I would have preferred it a ballad. The same with “Feel Like I’m Dying”, it’s a standard power metal tune that goes nowhere and more in the vein of what I thought this album would sound like before I heard it. I’ll probably skip this one in the future. But we get our ballad with “A Song In The Wind”. It is big and bombastic, filled with drama and it comes in a gothic power ballad suit – very good. “Stormy Days” is a pretty good song whose cinematic verses are way better than its chorus. Still, it has this “in one ear, out the other” standard hard rock / metal thing going on which makes it somewhat forgettable. Closing track “Beyond” is slower and darker – it has punch and drive and an ok melody, but unfortunately, this one too is on the forgettable side.

To me, this album is a very pleasant surprise, even though the first half is a lot better than the second where quality falters some. It’s also clear that Lione’s description of the musical style is accurate, that’s how I would describe the music as well. Now, I can admit that I haven’t exactly listened myself half to death to Rhapsody, but from what I have heard, Eternal Idol differs quite the bit from his former band (s). The fact that this band features both a male and female singer (without the male being a growler, which is nice for a change). What I also dig is that in Giorgia Collelouri they have a more a straight ahead hard rock / metal vocalist instead the thirteen a dozen operatic sopranos that seems to the default style when it comes to this kind of music otherwise. And the Nightwish comparisons I made is more musically than vocally. On the not so good side, the album has a tendency to be a bit samey and after a few spins it’s not all that easy to remember which title that belongs to which song. To sum it up, a good album, no more no less – and it’s gonna be interesting to hear what fans of Lione have to say about it.

6/10

Tracklist:

1. Evil Tears
2. Another Night Comes
3. Awake In Orion
4. Is The Answer Far From God?
5. Blinded
6. Sad Words Unveiled
7. Desidia
8. Hall Of Sins
9. Feels Like I’m Dying
10. A Song In The Wind
11. Stormy Days
12. Beyond

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