Frozen Crown - Crowned In Frost
Italian 5-piece band Frozen Crown stood out to me among new European power metal acts because of their speed, skillful balance of lead guitar, clean vocals, and harsh vocals. In their sophomore album Crowned in Frost, lead composer Federico Mondelli seems to be experimenting with longer tracks, atmospheric riffing, more vocal harmonies, more blast beats, and an overall heavier sound. If we’re going to make comparisons to winter-themed bands, think less Sonata Arctica and more Wintersun. First single “Neverending” had me hooked from its initial release with heavy rhythm guitars, melodic riffing during the chorus, and a blasty ending. “Winterfall” is another long, complex track that has a lot of melodeath-style riffs over power chords and fast drums, with harsh vocals predominating as well as piano and atmospheric guitars to vary the pace. The album has some more straightforward melodic heavy metal tracks mixed in, such as “Battles In The Night” and “Lost in Time.” Title track “Crowned in Frost” is an epic arrangement of atmosphere, “woooa woooa” vocals, and harsh vocals; lead guitars never cease to accompany these contrasting layers. As a reviewer and a fan, I’m not the pickiest on production and vocals (mostly because I’m not technical enough); but I am thoroughly impressed with this second album in terms of composition and atmosphere.