Review: Oknos – Old World
Written by: Rainer Kerber
The symphonic metal band Oknos from Hannover was founded in 2013. The band “combines the smoothness of classical music with the heaviness of metal”. Thus, the musicians create a totally new sound.
The digital single “Keeper of Time” was released on October 21st, and the debut album Old World will be released at the beginning of 2017, first as a digital album and two months later as a physical CD, but initially only in Europe.
In the introduction ‘Prologue’ Oknos shows where the journey is going. The epic strings go seamlessly into the next song ‘Struggle’. Here the rhythm section comes in. Hard but melodic guitar riffs and powerful drums accompany Anna’s (last name unknown) elf-like vocals. And again and again strings are interwoven. Also, the male clear vocals at the end of the song fit to the music.
Following the strong opening tracks, ‘Old World’ starts with oriental-inspired sounds before guitars and drums make way for quiet rock song.
Up next is the rocking tune ‘Sin.’ Here, there is the interplay between clean female and male vocals. Fortunately, the too often used “Beauty and the Beast” vocal scheme is not presented here, and short filigree guitar solo completes the song.
The band produced a video to ‘Keeper of Time.’ The song starts quietly with orchestral parts before using the banging guitars. Anna is vocally supported by her bandmates on the guitar making for a solid and hard rocking tune.
‘Guiding Light’ starts with epic choruses. The clear soprano is underlined by powerful guitar walls. Later on, a flute is played before the guitars are pushed back into the foreground giving this track a distinct character.
‘Fire’ starts as a piano ballad. The later onset of quiet drumming then provides pressure from the speakers as Anna shows all facets of her vocal abilities here. In the middle of the song the tempo is increased, drums, guitars and strings create a good mixture of heaviness and epic spirit.
The crowning glory then supplies the eight-minute epic ‘Requiem.’ Strings and winds accompany at first ballad-like quiet singing. Drums and rhythmic guitars provide for later metallic heaviness. The filigree interplay of both guitarists and the epic choruses again show the variety on the album.
With Old World the Hanoverians published a convincing debut. Classical music and heavy metal are combined here to form a harmonious unity. Singer Anna can convince with her soprano voice, while the other band members show their skills on the instruments and partly through the microphone. Even after several listens the album is fun and you can always discover something new. The album combines good song writing with a powerful production. Lovers of the symphonic genre should definitely listen to this. 8/10