Asphodelia is a dark symphonic metal act founded in 2016 in Foggia, Italy, by Samuela “Samah” Fuiani (vocals and keyboards) and Ruggero “Lordian” Doronzo (guitar), and currently including Davide Ricciardi (bass), Giuseppe Centonza (drums) and Gianni Colonna (guitar). The band is named after the asphodel, typical Mediterranean flower connected to the ancient Greek Underworld: in the ancient Greek mythology, the Asphodel Meadows is a place where the indifferent souls, who lived a life of neither good or evil, are sent to live after death.
Welcome Apocalypse has all the makings of a dark symphonic classic, it contains haunting riffs, soaring vocals, and a slow sludge that greats a sense of epicness, this will be an absolute treat to view live. Cassandra is next, and brings slowness to the record, allowing vocalist Samuela Fuiani to truly shine, as she embraces the different ranges to which she can reach. Alive starts with the keys, before moving into riff-driven metal, slowly constructing a tale that makes the music even more enticing.
Blackout brings the keys to the fore, whilst also bringing Samuela’s vocals to the fore as well. An enchanting tale is constructed, as the guitars begin their introduction with sharp driven power chords, the song continues throughout maintaining this pattern teasing the listener. Heroes is next, starting off slowly, melodically, drawing the listener in. The guitars kick in, and from there the story continues, hard edges and sharp contrasts are evident throughout the song, this will be a treat to see performed live. Secret War is an epic, the vocals are perfect throughout, the guitars perfectly complement the vocals, and the rhythm section performs its job brilliantly. Behind A Smile is another epic, starting off softly before going into overdrive.
Dust starts in the second half of the album, the guitars kick in with a minor melody that creates anticipation for the listener as they wait for what is to come. The song builds on that delivering a slab of pure symphonic metal purity. Mirror Mirror is next, with brilliant guitar riffs and perfect lyrics. Like Water is an anthemic song, and one that deserves a lot of airplay, and live performances. The Show is just that, it shows off the talent of the band be it guitar-wise, or vocal wise. Flowers of Evil covers about everything, soft intonations, heavy riffage, and brilliant vocal performances. With or Without You is a fresh take on a classic song by U2. A brilliant ending to a brilliant album.
Welcome Apocalypse is an adventure that starts with the title track and continues right until the last note of With Or Without You, the band take you on a story filled ride that will serve to make you want this album played live in full. Be sure to buy the album upon its release via Mighty Music on 20th April.