Days Of Defiance
25 October 2010
by Tom Dare
Fans of noodly power metal have had a tough time in 2010. Thank fuck for Firewind, who return from working with Michael Amott’s Spiritual Beggars project and Ozzy Osbourne to blow away the cobwebs with their usual aplomb.
Greek shredder Gus G might be splitting his time between his own band and Ozzy’s these days, but Days Of Defiance is a clear signal that he isn’t holding anything back for The Prince Of Fucking Darkness. The stamping riffs and finger-mangling solos are as strong and furious as you could ask for, and while we are firmly in the territory you expect Firewind to occupy, things have developed somewhat from previous album The Premonition.
Further, Apollo Papathanasio’s ballsy baritone is as powerful and rich as ever, filling out the instrumental parts through the verses before hooking you in the choruses. Perhaps the most noticeable evolution is in the keyboards, which play a larger part than in the past, occasionally pushing even Gus’s shred into the shade for brief periods.
The catchy choruses of ‘World On Fire’ and ‘Embrace The Sun’ along with the infectious widdling of ‘The Ark Of Lies’ or instrumental ‘SKG’ are prime examples of how well Firewind’s more-than-slightly camp, up-lifting metal can work, and shows off quite how accomplished some of the musicianship is.
Watch the video to ‘World On Fire’ by Firewind:
There is so much to like about Firewind – and Days Of Defiance in particular – that it seems almost churlish to add a caveat about them. What you want is for Days Of Defiance to be the the triumphant and brilliant magnum opus that really secures them their status as one of the absolute best at what they do, but it falls just a tad short. The very best that Firewind are capable has not quite been attained yet.
Sounds like: Gamma Ray, Edguy
Top tracks: World On Fire, SKG, The Yearning
Firewind – Days Of Defiance tracklisting:
The Ark Of Lies
World On Fire
Embrace The Sun
Heading For The Dawn
Cold As Ice
Kill In The Name Of Love
When All Is Said And Done