Review Summary: Flametal will introduce metal fans to the exotic world of Flamenco, and open the gates of Metal for Flamenco fans at the same time.
There are plenty of bands that have combined genres in their music, often creating musical masterpieces that other bands simply cannot make. Cynic brilliantly combined death metal with jazz, Between the Buried and Me have basically run out of genres to incorporate into their music, and Cephalic Carnage, who like BTBAM , mess with your listening expectations.
But none of these metal bands have actually mixed a genre that most metal fans are unfamiliar with. That genre is flamenco. Hardcore metal fans will probably close this window after reading this, but to be honest, this album maybe the first original album the metal world has seen in a very long time. You’ve got countless metalcore bands just copying each other over and over again and Nu-metal bands that are so bad that they cant even copy each other. However, all hope is not lost. Iron Maiden, Opeth, and Flametal are still around to give us a fresh taste of originality every once in a while.
The mastermind in Flametal is the brilliant Benjamin Woods. From what I have read online, his journey into the world of flamenco began after his roommate stole all his electrical guitar equipment. He had to play his metal music on a classical guitar. One thing led to another, and he set off to spain to accomplish himself as a flamenco guitar artist.
After he returned to the states, he started what might be a new genre of metal. Im not saying we need a new genre for metal, but this new “Flametal” is definitely worthwhile.
On to the album. The moment you start The Elder, you get exactly what you are expecting to hear. Flamenco guitars start this song for about 10 seconds before the electric guitar feedback begins to start. At 35 seconds, the electric guitar riffs come crashing in, while the flamenco guitars are beautifully played over the electric riffs. This is basically the main blueprint for Flametal’s songs. Electric guitar for rhythm tracks, flamenco solos, (with the occasional electric guitar solo), Palmas, which are the traditional flamenco handclaps and Taconeo, the footwork.
Some songs such as The Elder, Silencio/Escobila, The summoning, and the first 2 minutes of Bruja Tortura are more focused on the flamenco aspect of this album. While other songs, such as Red cobblestone, Cuatro caballeros, and Palla Al Inferno, are more electric guitar oriented.
The previously mentioned Red Cobblestone is my favourite song on this album. It has this evil, menacing electric guitar riff that reminds of an evil Candlemass song that I cannot remember the name of, and it still maintains the main feel of the album.
The epic Journey Into Fear is a 14 minute song, and is the closer to this album. It summarizes most of the album because it contains the flamenco riffs that make this whole album great, the electric riffs and solos that are a must-have for metal fans, and also does not fail to give you the mood this album is supposed to give you.
Overall, the idea of Flametal is very original, and hopefully will not spawn thousands of bands that imitate each other mindlessly.
- The Elder
- Bruja Tortura
- Red Cobblestone
- Journey Into Fear
- Originality is very refreshing.
- Flamenco guitars work perfectly over electric riffs.
- Percussion is very good and fit’s the songs well.
- Vocals are not very interesting, but you will be more focused on the instruments rather than the vocals.
- The production on some songs could be better.
I hope you enjoyed reading my first review. Constructive criticism is welcome.