The origins of Greece's Paladine are found in the ashes of another, now defunct, Greek band: Mythraal. Founding members Chris Stergianidis (bass), Thanos Kollintzogiannakis (guitar), and Stamatis Katsafados (drums) are former members of that band. They rise again to create a new melodic power metal and offer a new album Finding Solace. They're joined by Nick Protonotarios on vocals and lead guitar and Marilena Plitsi on keyboards. Protonotarios has a guitar project, The Metalizer, where he takes television and movie themes and makes them into melodic heavy metal. (And you're welcome for the pitch.)
Without wanting to sound either cliche or condescending, Paladine essentially creates formulaic and derivative European model power metal. Their foundation is classic and traditional melodic heavy metal, adding the gallop of speed metal and the slight embellishment of symphonic metal. Twin guitar harmony in riffs and guitar lines is prominent as are the thrilling lead solos from Protonotarios. In several songs, like Dragonrider and Knight of the Black Rose, Paladine drops in some sweet acoustic guitar parts for accent. For the title cut and metal ballad, Finding Solace, the entire song turns on voice over those acoustic guitars. The bass and drum lines in the rhythm section have the power to propel faster songs like Dragonrider or The Metalizer, yet also give a song such as Master of Present and Past some infectious rock groove. In that song and the later Midnight Sky, the bass line introduces the song. The lead vocals are the typical metal variety with Protonotarios having an assertive, bit screamo at times, style, yet still remaining melodic and clean. When combined with harmonious backing vocals the vocal arrangement can be the catchy hook that makes the song click. Such is the case with Master of Present and Past, probably my favorite song here. What is notable by its near absence is the keyboard layer, which is barely heard throughout the entire album. It makes you wonder what contribution, if any, Ms Plitis adds to the band in a live performance.
In the end, for a debut album, Finding Solace is a fine first effort from Paladine, a solid and entertaining platter of traditional European power metal. If you're a fan of the genre, as I am, you will want to check it out. Recommended.
For a debut album, Finding Solace is a fine first effort from Paladine, a solid and entertaining platter of traditional European power metal. If you're a fan of the genre, as I am, you will want to check it out. Recommended.
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