DRAGONLORD – Black Wings Of Destiny

DRAGONLORD - Black Wings Of Destiny


Escapi Music
Release Date: October 15, 2005

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While Testament are forced to remain silent since the band’s vocalist Chuck Billy is fighting against the loathsome disease (with all our wishes for Chuck to be the winner), Eric Peterson took the opportunity to write another chapter in Dragonlord’s small, yet noteworthy, history.

The band was formed back in 2001 by the founding Testament guitarist in order to explore his deepest Black Metal feelings. The first Dragonlord release, Rapture, saw the sunlight in the same year, receiving some very good reviews all over Europe where they gave some selected live appearances.

The following years, a small lineup change took place when the bass guitar virtuoso Steve DiGiorgio was replaced by Derek Ramirez, who had performed with Testament on the album Demonic. So, the current lineup is as follows: Eric Peterson – Vocals & Guitar, Steve Smyth (Nevermore) – Guitar, Derrick Ramirez – Bass, Jon Allen (Sadus) – Drums, and Lyle Livingston (Psypheria) – Keyboards.

Black Wings of Destiny is the brand new album coming from Dragonlord’s camp. According to Peterson’s statement, the first album was completely composed by him while the second one was the product of a collaborative process.

Despite of the Thrash background of the band members, Black Wings of Destiny is a fine example of European Black Metal in the style of Dimmu Borgir, with orchestral arrangements and imposing keyboards. The sound production was done in the famous Fredman studios in Sweden by the master himself, Fredrik Nordstrom, who put the finalizing touch of the Northern Black Metal atmosphere within the album.

After the Cradle of Filth-like intro, “The Becoming Of” (mainly due to the female operatic vocals), comes “The Curse of Woe.” The song contains almost everything that a Dimmu Borgir fan would like from the last two releases … dominating drums with impressive keyboard work that fit perfectly with the fast guitar riffs. “Revelations” can be described as the perfect blend between Cradle of Filth and Dimmu Borgir, with catchy guitar riffs amongst the classic Black Metal blast beats. Peterson’s vocals are quite good … even the clean ones … although they could use less distortion.

“Sin of Allegiance” is next, possibly being the best track of the album. The Maiden–ish twin guitar harmonies and solos add greatly to the sound diversity in favor of the melody. None can argue the fact that the five musicians render high skill performances, not to mention their respectable musical backgrounds. “Until the End” comes to slow down things a little bit with some clean vocals melodies during the chorus lines. Here the guitars carry the Testament signature, comprising the classic American Thrash sound.

“Mark of Damnation” and “Blood Voyeur” follow the classic Black Metal Northern European pattern, featuring tempo changes with blast beats and atmospheric orchestral breaks. The last Dragonlord original track (the next two songs are covers) is entitled “Fallen.” This song has some of the insanity that could be found in an Emperor album, with guitar and keyboard melodies creating perfect musical chaos.

Two cover songs complete the track list of the second Dragonlord album. The first one is over Mercyful Fate’s “Black Funeral,” whilst the second is over Thin Lizzy’s “Emerald.” The latter song comprising clean vocals is the best, because the band has successfully reproduced the epic atmosphere of the original version while adding some elements of their own musical character. The bass guitar takes the lead on the rhythm section during the perfect arrangement during the guitar solo.

Black Wings of Destiny can satisfy the most demanding fan of the European Black Metal scene that has on the frontline Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth. Maybe the addition of a regular singer could add some character to Dragonlord’s sound, perhaps helping them to distinguish themselves from the aforementioned bands.


  • Dr. Dimitris Kontogeorgakos

    Dimitris was a reviewer and interviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He has a diploma in Physics, a Masters in Medical Physics and a doctorate dimploma in Nuclear Medicine (this is the reason for his Dr. title). He was given his first Heavy Metal tape at the age of 12 which was a compilation entitled Scandinavian Metal Attack. The music immediately drew his attention and there he was listening to the first Iron Maiden album, trying to memorize the names of the band members. That was it! After some years, he stopped recording tapes and started buying vinyl records, spending every penny in the local record shop. The first live concert he attended was Rage co-headlining with Running Wild.

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