Fellowship – The Saberlight Chronicles (Review)

Fellowship - The Saberlight ChroniclesFellowship are a symphonic power metal band from the UK and this is their debut album.

I love a good power metal album, but I also find I’m constantly disappointed by it, as I’m not easily pleased with the style. Not so with The Saberlight Chronicles – this is a first rate slice of the good stuff. Fun, ridiculously positive and over the top, and packed with great tunes, Fellowship have massively impressed.

The Saberlight Chronicles is 65 minutes long, but doesn’t feel like it. I love that there is no filler on this album, no pointless intro, outro, or interlude tracks, just twelve songs.

The well-written songs are effervescent with joy and upbeat energy. The melodies are bright, sugary, and infectious. The songs are cinematic and epic. The symphonic elements are well-judged and balanced; they enhance and add value, without overpowering or swamping the core of the music.  There’s a surprising amount of variety on the album, and each track has its own place and its own personality.

The singer has an exceptional voice. Vocals are easily one of the prime weakest links in most power metal, but Fellowship’s singer is ridiculously talented. There are no weak links here.

The glorious songs are simply irresistible. It’s near-impossible not to smile when listening to such relentlessly happy music.

The Saberlight Chronicles reminds me of any number of classic power metal albums, and even on first listen you can tell it is destined to be spoken of in the same sentence as bands such as Dragonforce, Rhapsody of Fire, Freedom Call, Helloween, Blind Guardian, etc. Fellowship still have their own personality within this though, and this album’s high quality is a testament to the skill and passion of the band members.

The 00s were my main power metal years, and The Saberlight Chronicles would have fit in perfectly there. It is probably the best symphonic, over the top power metal album I’ve heard for quite some time. It’s that good.

Essential listening.

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