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Review of the Album "The Hall of the Olden Dreams" by Spanish Power Metal Band Dark Moor
Introduction to The Hall of the Olden Dreams
"The Hall of the Olden Dreams" is the second studio album by Spanish power metal band Dark Moor released in 2000. Even all these years later, I hear the musical brilliance that new fans are about to hear on this album. Lyrically, the band focuses on fantasy style themes such as elves, dragons, goblins, and knights. If the album Gates of Oblivion is still the finest album they recorded with Elisa C. Martin on vocals, this album is pretty close to that one in terms of the musical greatness. So with that said, let’s get started with Dark Moor!
How Does the Album Start Out?
The Ceremony is a short instrumental that has a huge classical influence in it and this is typically what neoclassical power metal bands do. They don’t show off or brag musically but they let listeners know about their style right away.
Why is Somewhere in Dreams a Special Song?
The second song Somewhere in Dreams can be interpreted in two ways. First, the listener can interpret this song as your typical fantasy metal song. Second, you can take a more analytical approach (recommended) and look at the bigger lyrical meaning and context of this song. The boy dreams that he has the fire, wind, and rain hit his face as he is lost in a land far away from home. Dreams can tell us that there is a way to solve a real life problem or issue.
The Two Best Songs in This Album
Maid of Orleans is about the story of French hero Joan of Arc as she fought for her freedom but she was betrayed and she was burnt at the stake. This is not your typical power metal song because the orchestration feel in it is pretty awesome and the guitar melodies are incredible. It only gets better musically for these members as the song Silver Lake is an impressive display of neoclassical power metal. Dark Moor beats most power metal groups except for maybe Brazil’s Angra during the Andre Matos years. The beginning riff is a fast, complex lead guitar part that sets the stage for what should be the favorite song for many fans in this album. The song slows down briefly as Dark Moor shows their acoustic guitar brilliance. The lead guitar work continues as it is combination of speed, creativity, and elegance. Yngwie Malmsteen would be proud of this group if he ever heard them play.
Maid of Orleans
How Did Elisa Martin Make Bands Better?
Whatever group she has been a part of, Elisa Martin has made that group better. Her voice is an ideal power metal voice not because she sings super high but it is in pitch, in order, and she can do pretty good harmonies as well. The best vocalists do not necessarily have the highest pitched voices but they make it work within the context of the songs. They don’t ever try to force the issue with their voice.
Final Thoughts About the Album
The Sound of the Blade is a piano playing ballad in which is an example of how Elisa does not try to overdo it with her voice. It is the story pf a warrior that has been wounded in battle but they put their lance in the field and pay tribute to God, our creator that created man and woman and gave them life. Quest for the Eternal Flame is a song about fighting for your land even it means that you may die. Going to heaven for these warriors is the best reward. At the end of the day, one of their other goals is to spread compassion where they go. If Gates of Oblivion gets a 95 out of 100 points, this album comes pretty close getting a 90 out of 100 points. Even after Elisa left Dark Moor, this band was still good and they still are. Dark Moor is one of those bands that will always be one of Spain’s finest.
© 2017 Ara Vahanian