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Luca Turilli's Rhapsody - "Prometheus: Symphonia Ignis Divinus" (CD)

Luca Turilli's Rhapsody - "Prometheus: Symphonia Ignis Divinus" CD cover image

"Prometheus: Symphonia Ignis Divinus" track listing:

1. Nova Genesis (Ad Splendorem Angeli Triumphantis)
2. Il Cigno Nero
3. Rosenkreuz (The Rose And The Cross)
4. Anahata
5. Il Tempo Degli Dei
6. One Ring To Rule Them All
7. Notturno
8. Prometheus
9. King Solomon And The 72 Names Of God
10. Yggdrasil
11. Of Michael The Archangel And Lucifer’s Fall Part II: Codex Nemesis

Reviewed by on June 3, 2015

"One thing is certain, the only composer on earth who can top Luca Turilli is the man himself."

It has become patently unfair to review a Luca Turilli creation as a “metal album.” No matter what you call it… “cinematic metal,” “symphonic metal,” “classical metal” – Turilli composes musicscapes beyond comparison. While he will never be held to the unattainable standard of a modern Mozart and Beethoven – the giants who receive 100% critical acclaim whether deserved or not – Luca can easily draw comparisons to modern composers like John Williams, Hans Zimmer and Jerry Goldsmith.

With his composition company created, his ability to mix both old world classical and modern/new world classical with metallic elements is unprecedented in heavy metal. This music transcends the metal world and thrusts deeply into mainstream music and movie soundtrack lore. On “Prometheus – Symphonia Ignis Divinus” – Turilli uses both dark and light elements, a real combination of “Prophets of the Lost Eclipse” and “The Infinite Wonders of Creation,” to create a stunning masterpiece that trumps the impossibly towering “Ascending to Infinity.”

It is literally pointless for fans that do not enjoy meticulously orchestrated cinematic metal to run out to buy “Prometheus,” so just stop right here. Long time Luca fans, read on! Imagine, if you will, being on board the Hollywood backlot tram tour, only its much cooler than you can imagined. As you pass by various sets for movies like “Solomon” (with “King Solomon and the 72 Names of God”) “Lord of the Rings” (with “One Ring to Rule Them All”), “Valhalla Rising” (with “Yggdrasil”) – you are whisked away on a musical journey that is a rich and pure as the breathtaking mountains, valleys, lakes and oceans. Luca creates music that conjures images teaming with life that flash on every note, which is as extraordinary as the breathtaking compositions themselves.

After the accident that nearly took the hand and career of guitarist Dominique “Dodo” Leurquin, his presence on “Prometheus” is a both relieving and required. It’s also a welcome sight to see drummer Alex Landenburg (21 Octayne/Mekong Delta), who joined the band before the release of “Ascending Into Infinity” in 2012, but who hasn’t played on a release until “Prometheus.” A favorite skin basher for many years, it’s a triumphant display from one of the best and hardest working in the business. Sound wise…albums do not get much more pristine.

With Luca at the helm along with his team of Sebastian Roeder (recording) and Christoph Stickel (mastering) – “Prometheus” is a sonic jewel. Having freed himself from the binding storylines of the pre-split Rhapsody/Rhapsody of Fire days, Luca seems bent on raising the bar with everything he does – becoming part opera, part soundtrack, part metal, part symphony.

Where tracks like “Rosenkreuz,” “Prometheus” and “Yggdrasil” ratchet up the heaviness that metalheads expect (notably those fans who have become disillusioned at the orchestrated distractions away from guitar), other songs bring a beautiful “non-metal” element, best represented through “Il Tempo Degli Dei” – which has quickly grown to be the go-to favorite after a mediocre first listen (it sounds immensely happy) – and “Notturno,” the operatic ballad showcasing uber-talented vocalists Alessandro Conti and Fench soprano Emilie Ragni.

Once again, the album’s keystone monument is “Of Michael the Archangel and Lucifer’s Fall” – this time with the second part, subtitled “Codex Nemesis.” Remembering greatness levels reaching stupid proportions on “Ascending to Infinity,” the second part matches but comes from a different melodic angle.

Overall, “Prometheus - Symphonia Ignis Divinus” ties elements from all of Luca’s previous efforts – with a heavy dose of “Prophet of the Last Eclipse,” nods to the Dreamquest release “Lost Horizons,” and a victory lap from “Ascending to Infinity.” If you are a fan of Turilli, there is little doubt you will gush all over “Prometheus.” If you find the cinematic, operatic and symphonic elements a little too over the top for your metal cravings, then steer clear. One thing is certain, the only composer on earth who can top Luca Turilli is the man himself.

Highs: High expectations realized from the world's best composer.

Lows: With Luca's Rhapsody, either you find it amazing or way too over the top to be respectable.

Bottom line: "Prometheus" may seem like an "Ascending to Infinity" victory lap, but it goes way deeper than what you hear on the first listen.

Rated 5 out of 5 skulls
5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)