LABYRINTH – Return to Heaven Denied Pt. II: “A Midnight Autumn’s Dream”

  • 9/10
    LABYRINTH - Return to Heaven Denied Pt. II: "A Midnight Autumn's Dream" - 9/10


Scarlet Records
Release Date: June 21, 2010

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The labyrinth of heaven returns after almost eleven years. Once again, the entrance is still denied. Nothing can be done about it; you’ll just have to be patient. Talking about patience, the Italian band Labyrinth did not choose to be patient and just sit and wait. They wanted to continue the story about why the return is forbidden. This true follow-up album to 1999’s Return To Heaven Denied enters with such elegance … just as the imaginative epos began last decade.

Whoever remembers the speedy beginning of “Moonlight” back then will probably shed a tear when they hear “The Shooting Star”. Labyrinth did a great job preserving the same powerful, yet calm, flow of emotion throughout this album as well. The former comparison between the two openers is definitely the last that can be made between songs of the two albums. The second part of Return To Heaven Denied, named “A Midnight Autumn’s Dream”, explores the rather softer side of the band while showing an atypical way of conveying their emotions regarding the tale.

In 1999, the first part of the epos displayed Labyrinth in the rather youthful stage of being a Power Metal band. Unlike other bands from Italy like Vision Divine, Domine, or even Rhapsody Of Fire, it is very easy to become addicted to the melodies, riffs, vocals, and eye-opening beats. Now, in 2010, it was time to put forth larger quantities of emotions into gear while crafting the second part of Return To Heaven Denied. Within “A Midnight Autumn’s Dream”, Labyrinth invested much on creating a relatively solid foundation of Metal, which means more room for them to explore the other sides of Metal and Hard Rock. It seems that they really tried to level things up between a speed-based and tranquil atmosphere.

Unlike in their earlier stages, most of their focus was on how to be melodic, heavy, and speedy as hell all at once. On the other hand, “A Midnight’s Autumn Dream” opened up a newly found Labyrinth. They were still melodic, but filled with energy, and yet more tender. Even when they charge up their spirit with high-octane riffs, they still know where to stop and release their peaceful inner souls. Some hit machine examples are:  “The Shooting Star”, “Like Shadows In The Dark”, “Sailors In Time”, “To Where We Belong” (perhaps a continuance of the old hit “Thunder”), “A Midnight’s Autumn Dream”, and “A Painting On The Wall”.

Lastly, there is the production. The band, led by their returning guitarist, Olaf Throsen, and by following the master producer, Mika Jussila, made wonders concerning their sound. Everything is sharp, accurate, and put into its rightful place. This album resembles other melodic delicacies from bands such as the late Lost Tribe and Balance Of Power. Now you have plenty of reasons to embrace this one too … so please do.


Roberto Tiranti – Vocals, Bass
Andrea Cantarelli – Guitar
Olaf Thorsen – Guitar
Andrea de Paoli – Keyboards
Alessandro Bissa – Drums


  • Lior Stein

    Lior was a reviewer, DJ and host for our Thrash Metal segment called Terror Zone, based out of Haifa, Israel. He attributes his love of Metal to his father, who got him into bands like Deep Purple, Rainbow, Boston, and Queen. When he was in junior high he got his first Iron Maiden CD, The Number Of The Beast. That's how he started his own collection of albums. Also, he's the guitarist, vocalist and founder of the Thrash Metal band Switchblade. Most of his musical influences come from Metal Church, Vicious Rumors, Overkill, and Annihilator.

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