WISDOM – Rise of the Wise

WISDOM – Rise of the Wise

The fourth full-length studio album from Hungary’s Wisdom, "Rise of the Wise" continues to bring uplifting happy harmonies, double bass, and majestic melodies to the masses. The quintet has a new member on second guitar (ex-Battle Beast member Anton Kabanen), and the energy flow on these 11 tracks reminds me of the early years of Edguy, Angra, and of course a lot of classic Gamma Ray/Helloween.

The tradeoffs in main and background vocals plus choir elements makes "Raven’s Night" an early favorite, plenty of double bass throwdowns and twin axe action to elicit hordes to clap, scream, and shout along. Wisely shifting gears for the follow up "My Heart Is Alive" at an almost doom/epic pacing, vocalist Gábor Nagy shifts between a tender mid-range and more falsetto-oriented upper register as the verses and chorus roll through. You get everything from a more straight-ahead metal offering with "Through the Fire", a little power/folk number in "Nightmare of the Seas" and something more current in Accept meets Running Wild fashion for "Secret Life" – versatility the key to keeping their audience satisfied and banging their heads away. And there’s nothing wrong with a little assistance from Sabaton’s Joakim Broden on the title cut to add a little military atmosphere to the proceedings.

"Rise of the Wise" appeals to the power metal maven who doesn’t desire a lot of comfort in knowing what they’ll get in terms of songs and performances. Surprises do not abound, but consistency in the output will allow for maximum pleasure. Much more appealing that "Marching for Liberty" to these ears, let’s keep our eyes out to see where Wisdom takes us in the coming years.