I was recently introduced to this relatively unknown band called Screaming Savior. These guys are Chinese and play Blackened Symphonic Metal – and while a comparison to Dimmu Borgir is impossible to avoid, that whole thing can be summed up shortly like this: Screaming Savior’s “Infinity” is better than Dimmu Borgir’s over-the-top modern-day efforts, as well as other Symphonic\BM-influenced releases like the overly hyped “Time I” by Wintersun or Screaming Savior’s competitors in their own continent, Taiwan’s Chthonic.
So..on what basis do I make these claims? Well, first let me say that, when talkin’ symphonic elements in metal, it all comes down to orchestration. Theoretically, yeah you could just throw strings\brass and piano all over the album..and many people will find that “epic”, sure. However, truly utilizing the powerful potential of an orchestra requires a more classical approach. This method might have need for a painstaking attention to detail & a bit of music theory, but it all pays off, as is the case with “Infinity“. Listen below to this album’s intro + first track; what a grand, promising opener for this album!
These two opening pieces are definitely good – I especially enjoyed the phrasing of the operatic vocals that appear on “Star of Fatality“, as they are distinctly of chinese musicality and channel a vibe of ancient times. If Track 1# felt more Symphonic than BM to you, next song “Sanguinary Salvation” offers much more sinister, straight-forward riffage and blastbeats that will put a satanic smile on your face. The band alternates between these relentless moments and their epic signature orchestrated melodic parts with brilliant speed. I only wish the guitars were a bit less buried behind those in the mix.
“Wings of The Vast Sea” enters with one of those nostalgic harmonized melodeth riff, and even without understanding the lyrics, you can tell this song entails an adventure of sorts. The sound of sea waves arrives followed by another familiar sound – The drums of fucking WAR. Can this album get any more Epic!? “Ocean of Asura” is the soundtrack to battle, with a melancholic melodic twist to it.
In a style prone to be repetitive, Screaming Savior manage to keep things varied. “Nacha The Demon” is all blackened, while “Pray to The Chthonic” is the necessary ballad-like break, and “Ode to The Expedition” is straightforward unashamed Power Metal, so victorious and ambitious it’s cheesy. At a few instances these drastic changes happen within the same track and feels excessively frantic, but overall, “Infinity” is a surprising, refreshing and E-P-I-C album, and for that, it gets a score of 9/10.