Circle Of Silence- The Rise Of Resistance
Written by Mark Nagy
Who’s up for some thrashy power? I’m usually not, but Circle Of Silence’s newest album, The Rise Of Resistance came across my desk, and I had heard enough good things that I figured it’d be good to check it out myself. I’m glad to say that at the least, the album lives up to it’s evocative album art. I mean look at that, isn’t that cool looking? On the musical side of things though, while confirming my personal aversion, The Rise Of Resistance does set out to do a job which it executes very, very well. The Rise Of Resistance is a serious gut-punch of an album, and certainly an exercise in worship at the altar of heavy. The album merges vocals in line more with traditional thrash metal aesthetics with compositions that are more along the lines of the sort of traditional/speed metal that Germany seems to so excel at.
I’m pretty unapologetic in my loyalties to the lands north of the Baltic sea when it comes to my power metal, but every so often its southern shores turn my head, especially in the genre’s homeland, Germany. I’ll admit, I get a little zoned out listening to the ‘older school’ of the genre, because “traditional” seems to just be a euphemism for ‘generic‘. I’d thank Circle Of Silence, in this case, for kicking listeners in the teeth really, really hard. The album’s opener “Blood Of Enemies” ought to get the horns in the air and the heads-a-banging in a hurry. This, and the two songs that follow (“Eyes Of Anarchy” and “Nothing Shall Remain”) are lots of fun. The melodies aren’t the strongest, but they’re delivered with such force that it ends up working.
What really grabs my attention is the identity crisis that begins on the fourth song, “One Moment Of Hate”. The opening riff feels par for the course, but then a few seconds in…blast beats. There is a large, and entirely justified, section of metal fandom that reaches for the skip button at blast beats, because as we all know, metal is like an apple… The song however, stays pretty solid other than that. The problem I begin to have with the album at this point though is that, with as intense as the album comes off to start with, it begins to lose steam. This is solely on account of the songs all following a very general formula. The aforementioned blast beats stand out so much to me because it’s the first significant break in pace, and the next one won’t come until track 6.
That track, “Mind Conspiracy”, is rather enjoyable, and quite more melodic than much of the album. Still, with how loud it is, I’m not quite sure it really presents itself in the best way possible. The second half of the album moves on much as the first did, but I find it a bit stronger in melody and distinction, “The Final Chapter” and “Reborn from Darkness” come to mind in particular for this feat. On the other hand, the second half has the album’s only truly weak song, “The Architect Of Immortality”. This song tries to slow it down, and, other than being a little late in the game for that, it seems to go very poorly for the lead vocalist. While the singer has put on a great performance through 11 songs, it seems that the slower, almost somber tones do him very little justice. It’s pretty much inevitable that I find an album in this style a bit same-y, and I don’t hold it against it too much. Like I said, this album hits heavier than a cement mixer that just fell from 17,000 feet. There’s an audience for that stuff, and if you are that audience, you need to hear this album.