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Rhapsody Of Fire: Challenge The Wind
Rhapsody Of Fire - Challenge The Wind Album Art

Rhapsody Of Fire: Challenge The Wind

Symphonic Power Metal
4.5/5.0

If there were a gold standard for European, specifically Italian, symphonic power metal that bar has been raised by Rhapsody Of Fire. Since created by keyboard player, principal songwriter, and producer Alex Staropoli in 1995, Rhapsody Of Fire has been releasing albums of their jaw-dropping, bombastic, and epic power metal. Last heard with 2021's Glory For Salvation, Staropoli and crew return with their fifteenth long-player, Challenge The Wind, continuing their "Nephilim’s Empire Saga."

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Rhapsody Of Fire

Explaining the concept, Staropoli states the story is a metaphor: "It's about the fact that anyone can be a hero. Not automatically or from birth, but on the strength of what they do with their lives, whether they help others and grow into an empathic and caring person. Everybody can develop into a hero in the course of their life."


Musically, Staropoli comments on their songwriting strategy: "Compared to all previous Rhapsody Of Fire releases, the current album consists exclusively of up-tempo numbers, not a single ballad in sight ... None of our other records have featured as much pure, unadulterated metal as Challenge The Wind ... we ended up with ten songs that push the pedal to the metal from the first to the very last note."

He's not kidding. Typical bombastic and blistering tunes include Whispers Of Doom, Black Wizard, Challenge The Wind, and Kreel's Magic Staff with its sharp guitar start, big drum beats, and dense orchestral synths. If that isn't enough self-indulgent, grossly sensational power metal, than there's the 16 minute opus Vanquished By Shadows. The riffs are bigger as are the choral vocals, yet the tempos are mixed, and Staropoli finds a moment to drop in some light classical guitar before the midpoint. If there's a slight (ever so) downturn in speed it comes A Brave New Hope and the concluding Mastered By Dark.

All considered, if you appreciate premier, epic, and bombastic symphonic power metal, then you'll find the masters of the genre, Rhapsody Of Fire, taking all things over the top, no apologies mind you, with Challenge The Wind. Recommended.




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The Take Away

All considered, if you appreciate premier, epic, and bombastic symphonic power metal, then you'll find the masters of the genre, Rhapsody Of Fire, taking all things over the top, no apologies mind you, with Challenge The Wind. Recommended.

Support the artist, click the link below to buy the album at Amazon (US site) in your favorite format.

Purchase Rhapsody Of Fire - Challenge The Wind at Amazon
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