Saturday, February 26, 2011

Reader Submission: Wishdoom: Helepolis

Wishdoom is a traditional/doom metal band from Greece, which is a country that is not known for a lot of heavy metal, other than the Hellenic black metal style groups such as Kawir, Rotting Christ, and Varathron. This is the band's debut full-length album after releasing a demo and an EP previously.

Wishdoom vacillates between traditional and doom metal with some songs showing influences from Candlemass, Cirith Ungol, and St. Vitus, and others more like Iron Maiden, Blind Guardian, and the like. The one thing it all has in common is the epic feel. Wishdoom's lyrics deal a lot with battle and warfare and the music definitely has a glorious, victory-in-battle feel to it.

"The Battle of Platea" is the song that most impressed me upon initial listens. It has a doomy, power-chord driven riff that sounds like a march into battle. "Up the Hammers" builds throughout the length of the song into an impressive climax. The final, eponymous track also sticks out due to its uncharacteristic, piano-driven introduction.

The band does fall into some of the cliches that have marked this style of metal. The battle and fantasy lyrics are done to death at times, and the sweeping instrumentation can be a little overbearing. Some of the melodies start to sound the same after awhile as well. Nonetheless, the band shows some real promise. Their musicianship is incredible and the vocals are a real strength. The songs are catchy and enjoyable, and the album as a whole is powerful and uplifting.

This is a fairly standard release for this style of metal. It does not really offer anything new, but the musical abilities of the members is readily apparent. It is a competent and impressive debut from a band with a lot of talent. But there definitely remains room to grow and improve.

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