Released 18th February 2011 on Frontiers Records

Benedictum, led by the ample Veronica Freeman, have released two albums of classic, Dio-inspired metal. Both are solid efforts, if not exactly adventurous. Which is why the opening track of third album “Dominion” comes as a bit of a shock. An abundance of “contemporary” keyboards, industrial-light drums, and Veronica belting like an enraged grizzly.

On several subsequent tunes the rather contrived “hip” edge is pushed to the background, but it rears its head too much for my liking.

I can’t help but think Frontiers’ brief for this album mentioned something about aiming for a new demographic. A shame, because when they go for a more traditional approach (like they do in “Shadowlands” ) they sound a lot more at ease and convincing.

Bonus track “Overture/The Temples Of Syrinx” lacks the subtlety of the Rush original and comes across somewhat ham-fisted.

Production could have been better, especially the triggered drums.

If you enjoyed Benedictum’s first two albums, you may want to listen before purchase.

Rating – 70%
Review by Sancho


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