Review

LINGUA MORTIS ORCHESTRA LMO

Album · 2013 · Symphonic Metal
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5/5 ·
Kev Rowland
Right at the foot of the artwork of this release is a well-known logo, as it states that this release features Rage, one of my favourite German bands. Back in 1996 they co-operated with a classical symphony orchestra to release ‘Lingua Mortis’, and following on from an orchestral show they undertook in 2010 they have decided to create two versions of the band. Rage will continue down the Metallic path they have been following for well over twenty years, while there will also be the Lingua Mortis Orchestra where they will collaborate with orchestras to take symphonic metal in yet a different direction. Simply titled ‘LMO’, most of this album has been composed by Victor Smolski while Peavy Wagner’s concept, based on a true story of witch-hunting in the medieval town of Gelnhausen, has been brought to life by the introduction of additional Jeannette Marchewka and Dana Harnge, two orchestras from Spain and Belarus, and more than 100 participants. Produced by Smolski and long-time co producer Charlie Bauerfeind (Blind Guardian, Hammerfall etc) Rage and their extended guests have created an incredible piece of work.

It is hard to really describe this as it does seem much more like a very large band with everyone playing an integral part, as opposed to a rock band plus orchestra. When the strings come in they really rock, while the whole orchestra definitely lifts the band. This is some of the best music I have ever heard from Rage, as the guys have stepped up in front of other professional musicians. Popular musicians are often sneered at by those who perform classically, but not after this as I am sure that there must have been respect from both sides in what sounds like a wonderful marriage. Certainly Victor or providing some of the most fluid and exciting guitar licks one will ever hear, and it seems that he is relishing playing against the brass. If I were to cite just one band as an influence then it would be Savatage, but taken to a whole new level in what is a stunning piece of work. Brilliant, just brilliant.
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