Fairyland - Of Wars In Osyrhia
Do you count yourself to those whose world was torn apart when you reached by the news that Dark Moor had split up? I certainly was and the worst part of it all was that I feared that it was going to be a long time 'til I heard Elisa Martin's outstanding part again. So imagine my pure and utter joy when I learned that she was back in the game and in almost no-time =) Shortly after leaving Dark Moor, the French guys in Fairyland scooped her up and she was fighting the good fight again.
Fairyland, formerly also called Fantasia and Fantasy, was formed by drummer Willdric Lievin 1998. Two previous demos have been recorded- Tribute to Universe and Realm of Wonders. This brought some serious attention to the band and eventually they started recording Of Wars in Osyrhia in Februrary 2002. During this period the band searched for a vocalist in a not so ordinary singing style and since Dark Moor was no more, Elisa was the perfect choice. After a really long recording period in Wizard Studios, the album was finally finished in November the same year.
The metal style that Fairyland represent is symphonic power metal and the sound is as if Dark Moor and Rhapsody have joined in holy matrimony. But don't think that you've stumbled on some lame clones of those two bands here. You couldn't be more wrong 'cause Fairyland still have their own style and their fantastic sound consist mainly of symphonic and male choir based refrains and of course Elisa's (as usual) superb vocals. Although her performance here perhaps doesn't reach her efforts on The Gates of Oblivion she won't disappoint you the slightest. The resembly with Dark Moor is of course mainly Elisa's contribution though and not so much the instruments that are much closer to Rhapsody and Turilli. I think that Fairyland does it way better than Rhapsody in many aspects though. They have all the classic instruments and elements as their Italian collegues but they deliver a more direct metal and it feels more simplified somehow. It took some rotations to realize this and the absolute grandeur of the album since it felt like it was completely overdone at first. But when it hit home, it was in the shape of a blazing thunderbolt and even some thirty spins later it still sends shivers up my spine.
Elisa's vocals, the pompous and mighty male choirs in the refrains, great and majestic arrangements, complexed layered metal/symphonic carpet, some really cool and fast swirling guitarsolos and as good as every track in the up-tempo league make Of Wars in Osyrhia a remarkable debut. This is a kick ass performance of very high quality metal and I have already put it on my top ten list for 2003 although much still remains of the year.
Fairyland is yet another gem to put in the fantasy metal treasure chest and given a little more promotion this could go very far indeed. Not just fans of Rhapsody and Dark Moor will have very fine moments together with Fairyland but also other metallers will come to rejoice in the magic tunes that Osyrhia has to offer, I guarantee it!
Merci beaucoup mademoiselle et monsieurs =)