Firewind
Allegiance


3.5
great

Review

by Slaytan USER (16 Reviews)
August 12th, 2007 | 33 replies


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist


Let’s just jump right into the review, shall we?

Firewind’s fourth full length studio album follows the blueprint set by their first three albums in the respect that it contains driving riffs, pounding drums, atmospheric keyboards, and powerful vocals…as well as Firewind’s fourth different lineup.

Allegiance is most notably the debut for new lead singer Apollo Papathanasio, also of the band Evil Masquerade, and what a debut it is. His voice is powerful enough to be heard over the powerful melody produced by the rhythm section on such songs as ”Breaking the Silence” and ”Dreamchaser”, but not quite aggressive enough to overpower softer tracks like ”Deliverance”. On many of the songs, he will use an excess of vibrato with his voice, but it won’t become annoying or repetitive, seeing as it is just his way of singing. His vocals on the album are very well done, and his voice compliments Firewind’s brand of power metal/ hard rock much better than former vocalists Stephen Fredrick and Chitral Somapala. This is because of not only his voice, but his ability to add on the lyric front with the mastermind of the band, Gus G. Many of the lyrics off of Allegiance promote positive messages such as self health, and standing up for one’s self.

“Be yourself tonight don't stress yourself to death
Don't try to fight the time
Synchronize your health”

Firewind ~ Falling to Pieces
Lyrics written by Gus G and Apollo Papathanasio

The music on the album has progressed since ”Forged by Fire” was released in 2005; it has moved toward a more hard rock direction, however, the power metal that Firewind fans have come to expect is still present throughout the album. Allegiance is also the first Firewind album to contain music and lyrics written by a member of the band other than Gus G. The guitar riffs on the album are catchy and heavy; in short, they fit in well with the rest of Firewind’s catalog of music. The only thing that hinders the music from the guitars is that after several listens, many of the riffs my start to sound similar. For example, the introduction riff to ”Ready to Strike” sounds like the main riff in ”Dreamchaser”, which sounds a lot like ”The Fire and the Fury” off of 2003’s, Burning Life. This does not make the album intolerable by any means, it just may start to sound the same to some listeners after several listens. The guitar solos on the album are plentiful, fast, and well executed. Gus G shows off his ability on this album, and steps up all aspects of his soloing, from speed to creativity; the song ”Insanity” has 4 guitar solos. For any other band, that would be ludicrous, but Firewind and Gus G pull it off with ease. The keyboards help to create a mysterious, and in some cases, very catchy atmosphere throughout a large majority of the album. On the album’s two singles, ”Falling to Pieces” and ”Breaking the Silence”, Bob Katsionis, lays down extremely catchy synth lines, but for the most part he just follows the progressions of the guitar lines.

Allegiance marks not only the debut of lead singer Apollo Papathanasio, but the debut of new drummer Mark Cross as well. Cross, like Papathanasio, makes a nice debut. Throughout the album his beats suit the songs nicely, and his fills are not the most original, but are different from what you will hear most anywhere else. He also makes nice use of the double bass; as opposed to rolling on it constantly as you would hear with many other metal bands, he uses it only to accent riffs and fill out the band’s sound. The bass is mixed rather well on the album, and for a majority of the album can be heard easily without having an overpowering sound. As is the case with the keyboards, they tend to lock up with the guitars most of the time, but in doing so, create a wall of sound that fills out much of the band’s sound along with Mark Cross’s double bass.

In conclusion, Firewind’s fourth full length studio album Allegiance is a great album. Everything from the music to the vocals to the production value is well done. And even though the album in itself may be groundbreaking or overly original, it is well written and most certainly worth a listen by any Firewind fan or just someone looking for a great power metal/ hard rock album.

For this album Firewind consisted of:
Apollo Papathanasio - Vocals
Gus G - Guitars
Bob Katsionis - Keyboards
Petros Christo - Bass
Mark Cross- Drums


Track by Track:
Allegiance: 3.5/5
Insanity: 4/5
Falling to Pieces: 3.5/5
Ready to Strike: 3/5
Breaking the Silence: 4.5/5
Deliverance: 3.5/5
Till the End of Time: 3/5
Dreamchaser: 3.5/5
Before the Storm: 2.5/5
The Essence: 3.5/5
Where Do We Go From Here: 3/5

Overall Rating: 3.5



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user ratings (112)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Slaytan
August 12th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

First Firewind review on Sputnik...

Ire
August 12th 2007


41829 Comments


Very good review
Vote*

Otisbum
August 12th 2007


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's about time someone reviewed this.
Great job, seems about what I'd say.

Breaking The Silence is pretty sweet, but the verse of Ready To Strike is a bit annoying.This Message Edited On 08.12.07

Lunarfall
August 12th 2007


3179 Comments


Firewind is VERY boring.

Mikesn
Emeritus
August 12th 2007


3709 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Firewind is the only other band after DragonForce that my brother listens to. I can't stand them anymore.

That said, Breaking the Silence is pretty sweet. Great review.This Message Edited On 08.12.07

Altmer
August 12th 2007


5652 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

don't have this, suppose I should check them sometime

my brother also likes DF mike but he also likes in flames, cob, lamb of god and more

Slaytan
August 12th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

IMO Firewind are so much better than DF, it isn't even funny.

Otisbum
August 12th 2007


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

IMO Firewind are so much better than DF, it isn't even funny.
This is true.

Fw has a much better singer, and I happen to like Gus G. more than Herman Li and Sam Totman (though I think I heard somewhere that Gus taught Herman how to play, or something along those lines, I'll look it up).

Slaytan
August 13th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Fw has a much better singer, and I happen to like Gus G. more than Herman Li and Sam Totman (though I think I heard somewhere that Gus taught Herman how to play, or something along those lines, I'll look it up).

I agree that Apollo is better than ZP, but I don't think he's horrible either. But as far as Gus G teaching Herman Li, I'm positive it's not true.This Message Edited On 08.12.07

Otisbum
August 13th 2007


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, don't get me wrong, I think ZP is a good singer, I just favor Apollo more.

And yeah, I couldn't find anything that proved that, so it's most likely not true. They are good friends though.

EDIT: Nevermind, found it:

You recently toured with DragonForce. Did you and Herman Li ever chat about technique?

Everything that he knows he learned from me, to be honest! (laughing) Everything he knows, I taught him. No, me and Herman have been friends for a long time, before DragonForce even released their first album.
Now whether or not this is 100% true, I have no idea. Here's the rest of the interview: http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/interviews/interviews/gus_g_of_firewind_guitar_solos_should_serve_a_purpose.html
This Message Edited On 08.13.07

Slaytan
August 13th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I have been proven wrong.

Otisbum
August 13th 2007


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Don't worry about it, I found it extremely hard to believe too.

Otisbum
August 25th 2007


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

So Insanity is pretty awesome at the moment.

Slaytan
August 26th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I'm pretty sure any song off this album would be a nice listen at any given time.

Altmer
October 30th 2007


5652 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah, I got this and it's solid. Apollo is a good singer, I like that he doesn't sound like a woman.

Slaytan
November 15th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Haha.

BallsToTheWall
December 4th 2007


44805 Comments


Whos the lady who sings in Breaking The Silence? She's hot.

Digging: Pink Turns Blue - If Two Worlds Kiss

Altmer
December 4th 2007


5652 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Tara. No idea where she's from.

Slaytan
December 6th 2007


1186 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

She's a singer/songwriter. She's not involved in any bands, and works closely with Gus G as far as songwriting goes. She doesn't work with anyone outside of Firewind either, or hasn't so far.
That's all I could dig up on her, there's not much info on her MySpace or website.

Poet
December 13th 2007


5935 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Out of the 4 songs I've heard from this, it looks like this is a pretty solid album.

Insanity is pretty insane with the solos, and Breaking the Silence is so damn addicting.



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