Deathless Legacy – Saturnalia

Deathless Legacy – Saturnalia
Scarlet Records
Date: 13/03/2020
Running Time: 24:16
Review by Victor Augusto
10/10

Maybe it is not a surprise to hear Italian bands exploring their traditional music, like Opera, to play along with Heavy Metal or work on subjects from this beautiful culture. Some bands do it in an epic way while others go deeper into the heaviness or obscure sound. In all cases, they sound unique. In the case of Deathless Legacy, the theatrical side where all interpretations are so strong and are hugely different. So, why not explore the rich Italian history, from ancient Rome to be more specific, in a 24-minutes-long single. If you love songs like ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ (Iron Maiden) or ‘Stargazer’ (Rainbow), you should stop everything you are doing now and join the band on this journey.

Saturnalia was a celebration in ancient Rome that happened between December 17th and 23rd. It was a short period of rebirth when the slaves could enjoy and party as free people. This song tells a specific history, in the year of 86 AD. During a long war, Helius hears that his father Flaccus (the Pater Familia of the Adepphius family) is dying and he should return to be the new Pater Familia as he is the first-born. In the Cimini hills, near Rome, he decides to rest during the night before returning home. There, he rests forever after a criminal sets his tent on fire while he is sleeping. This is done by Tullius Murena’s servant. Tullius’ plan is to kill the first-born son and leave the Adepphius Family weak to own and run their land. What he cannot imagine is how things would change. It is within this scenario that the main character appears. His name is Lucius, a slave of Tullius who was whipped almost until death after he let Tullius’ wine fall on the floor due to a trick from a young child. Lucius recovers himself in time to celebrate Saturnalia with his best friend, and slave, Hecatia.

Declared the prince with horns by the slaves and under command of Laverna, Lucius  gives an order for Tulius to serve him wine during the Saturnalia celebrations and Hecatia uses the same trick of the young child to make him fall on the floor, looking a fool in front all of the slaves. Of course, this joke has terrible consequence and Tullius, feeling humiliated by his slaves, creates an ambush for Lucius and Hecatia. He gives them a secret mission to deliver a gold medallion for his bastard son’s mother. Suddenly, on the way to deliver it, some of Tullius’ servants emerge to rape and kill Hecatia in front of Lucius. After witnessing that murder, he is stabbed by Tullius’ sword. For a moment, he can meet his parents in heaven, but it isn’t his time, yet.

He awakes under the care of Laverna Priestess, the goddess who protects the Underworld from thieves and cheaters. The goddess of what lies in the shadows as no murder or punishment is allowed by what happens in Saturnalia. Tullius calls for him the wrath of Saturn. She heals Lucius with a potion, so he can find himself deep inside and begins his metamorphosis with all his grief and pain!

Spiritually dead, but physically alive, Lucius finds the mortal remains of Helius in the burnt-out tent. He also finds a rope of one of Tullius’ servants and he was still carrying the same gold medallion he carried during the ambush he suffered. He realises that the person who murdered Helius is the same who murdered Hecatia. It is the spark for his revenge. Lucius burns his face and wears Helius’ armour to pretend he is the Adepphius first born. With a disfigured face and using the same armour that Helius used, nobody can recognize him. He returns to his old home and a great feast is made to celebrate it because everyone thinks that Helius is dead. Tulius is shocked and whips the servant that hasn’t killed Helius. Now, Lucius is using a gold mask to hide his pain and fake his existence, as if he is the new Pater Familia. During the feast he shows to everyone, including Tullius, the gold medallion and the servant’s robe. The betrayer is finally discovered and Tullius is taken to die in Rupes Tarpeia. Therefore, the revenge is complete, and it finishes the tale of Saturnalia!

Musically, “Saturnalia” has strong guitar riffs and bass lines from Sgt. Bones and Deadwood Nick. They create many intense moments, from acoustic and melodic pieces to fast and heavy ones, mirroring the tempo of the story. Frater Orion’s drum parts are amazing, he doesn’t let the music become massive and tiring. He plays in many different tempos and variations. Another interesting thing is how the song has a symphonic approach, but pianos, keyboards and orchestrations are not always present. The instruments are very well mixed, bringing the spirit of classic Heavy Metal. Steva’s vocals are brilliant. She has a unique identity to interpret the drama and the history. The interesting thing in her voice is how she uses a melodic side, sometimes a bit angelical, together with a lot of evil power, reminding me of the way that Ronnie James Dio sings.

There is an accompanying short movie/official video of the track and it has the band members acting as characters, with the black and white scenes bringing an epical and dense atmosphere. The more I watch the film; the more this genial creation enchants me. Unique! Majestic! Maybe these words could describe this Italian masterpiece called “Saturnalia”.

Here is a link to the film/video

TRACKLISTING:
1. Saturnalia

LINE-UP:
Steva – Vocals
Frater Orion – Drums
Alex Van Eden – Keyboards
Sgt. Bones – Guitar
Deadwood Nick- Bass

LINKS:
www.facebook.com/Deathlessmetal/
www.facebook.com/scarletrecords/
www.youtube.com/user/DeathlessLegacy
www.instagram.com/deathless_legacy
open.spotify.com/album/3WIl8GeGQusozWJXzEHvap

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Victor Augusto and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Collateral – ‘Collateral’

795536

Collateral – ‘Collateral’
Roulette Media Records / Cargo Records UK
Release Date: 21/02/2020
Running Time: 34:35
Reviewed By Paul Monkhouse
8/10

The rock scene has seemingly never looked healthier and 2019 has seen some absolutely incredible new albums emerge this year. This trend looks to continue well into 2020 with the release firstly of the Anchor Lane debut album and this, the first full length offering by Kent four-piece Collateral in February. Already making a big impression on UK and global audiences with slots at Camden Rocks, Ramblin’ Man and an appearance alongside Jon Bon Jovi, these South East rockers are amongst the most hotly tipped bands for future superstardom and this self-titled release shows exactly why they’re getting so much attention.

The songs on the album are huge and have such lofty ambitions to be played in stadiums but, unlike many who have come before, their strongest weapon in the fight is their talent and drive to succeed. Despite all the big, singalong anthems and flamboyant image, it’s not all empty glamour and glitz as beneath the noise and gleaming chrome of the surface lies a real blue-collar heart and recaptures the spirit of when Bon Jovi and their ilk were at their peak.

The album kicks off with the single ‘Mr. Big Shot’ and it’s a giant slab of commercial hard rock that mixes in some really 80’s elements ranging from classic American AOR to some almost New Romantic undertones and a pinch of ELO. Full of great guitar work from Todd Winger and epic vocals by Angelo Tristan, the track drips with tongue in cheek innuendos and a huge sense of a band having a ball in the studio. More monster riffing and vast melodies power along paeon to the modern music industry ‘Promiseland’, it sounds like the sleazy lovechild of AC/DC and, should have been huge, USA rock legends Giant as it snarls and purrs, leading to a superb solo by Winger. The band dust off their cowboy boots as the Southern Rock feel of ‘Merry Go Round’ brings images of swirling dust devils and shimmering desert heat to mind as they effortlessly turn their home county ‘Garden of England’ into the American Midwest. Close your eyes and you can feel the sun beating down and the dry mouthed feel that is desperate to be administered an ice-cold beer. Without doubt, one of the greatest strengths of the band is to conjure up that sense of time and place in a very tangible way, transporting you to a time when hair was big, and choruses were even bigger. This is no aping of the classic bands of that era but a contemporary take on the type of rock music that made Bon Jovi et al kings of stadiums, the production by Sean M Kenny bringing out the best in the material whilst giving it a thoroughly modern sheen.

‘In it for Love’ exemplifies this approach as it perfectly balances the pounding rock driven by rhythm section Ben Atkinson on drums and Jack Bentley-Smith’s bass alongside such a great, dynamic song that will have you singing along in no time. With its instantly catchy “woooh oooh oooh” gang vocals during the chorus and another fret blazing solo ‘Lullaby’ has already become a live favourite and should be blaring out of every car radio across the Atlantic, such is its perfect suitability for the American market.

Also finding its main inspiration the other side of the ‘pond’ is ‘Midnight Queen’, the band tilting their Stetsons to a more AOR meets Country Rock feel that sounds like it might have been written by Richard Marx and Vince Gill, the opening line the name of a huge hit that Marx wrote for Vixen and it shares that same sense of space, the focus on the songwriting, not the flash.

Those waiting for the heartfelt power ballad won’t be disappointed as ‘Get Back to You’ ticks all the right boxes, Tristan pouring his heart out as he longs to return home whilst the song proves it’s more about quality and quiet than drama school overemphasis.

Having stated their love for the aforementioned Mr. Jovi, the band expressed their intent to write something that captured the spirit of tracks like ‘Always’ and this certainly will see a sea of mobile phone lights (nobody is allowed lighters at gigs these days) held aloft in tribute. The pace picks up once again in the spot on, commercial pop rock of ‘Won’t Stop Me Dreaming’, a song that contains a tough streak of steely determination laced through its supremely candy coated and instantly addictive shell. The album ends with ‘About this Boy’, another country tinged track that once more heads more to the massive and lucrative Nashville scene than the heavier end of their material. Whilst a meatier number may have been more fitting, the song is still imbued with that Transatlantic feel that may well find the band gaining ground both in their home country and in the United States given the growing market here and the already titanic base there. Always doing things their way, Collateral continue to push forward, and this album shows just how far they’ve grown and where they’re heading. The stadiums of the world are beckoning.

Track Listing:
1 Mr Big Shot
2 Promised Land
3 Merry Go Round
4 In It For Love
5 Lullaby
6 Midnight Queen
7 Get Back To You
8 Won’t Stop Me Dreaming
9 About This Boy

Links:
https://www.collateralofficial.com/
https://www.facebook.com/collateralrocks/

https://www.instagram.com/collateralrocks/

 

015027

 

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.