CIRCLE OF SILENCE – The Rise of Resistance
Experience can pay dividends if you use the right tools and employ your craft with the mindset that nothing is ever perfect. In the case of German power metal band Circle Of Silence, their last album "The Blackened Halo" was a good record but didn’t contain a lot of those killer hooks or riffs that made me want to press play again and again. Maybe the fourth time will be the charm for this five-piece, and based on my first few weeks with this 12 song effort, I’d say they really have honed in on sharper riffing, aggressive and variable tempos, as well as proper vocal harmonies to meet much approval with the German power contingency.
After an acoustic intro build up reminiscent of Iced Earth, the fierce vocals of Niklas Keim signal the power chord attack of "Blood of Enemies"- gripping my ears not only with stellar riff composing and construction but the adept lead work from guitarist Tobias Pfahl. He’s not a mere shredder, but very thoughtful and deliberate at times – check out "One Moment of Hate" or his close to the riff vest parts in "We Rise" for his brilliant abilities to keep his playing firmly on proper song enhancement. Favorites include the slower, mid-tempo crunch of "Slave to the Greed Machine" and the blitzkrieg, almost thrash-like intensity of "An Oncoming Storm".
Improvement is tenfold all around with these musicians. The riff changes are exciting and flow together much easier, the band know how to mix up the faster songs with anthems, and the vocal harmonies are addictive and should careen in your brain for days. I’d place Circle Of Silence in a similar vein as Rage, Squealer or Mystic Prophecy- their brand of power metal is heavier than most but with a firm handle on keeping the material catchy and melodic.
Best improvement of the year so far, "The Rise Of Resistance" should push this act up the ranks.