Serenity – Codex Atlanticus (2016)


After the epic “War of Ages” we waited a bit over 2 years for this Austrian outfit to deliver a new release. With “Codex Atlanticus” the band continues the Symphonic Metal musical journey with a few line-up changes and their same bombastic approach to music. Delivering ten tracks of solid Symphonic/Power Metal, the band envelops us in an aural and historical journey, within the context of Leonardo da Vinci, for over 50 minutes of music.

With the explosive opener intro track, we are eased into the superbly catchy melodic nature of “Follow Me”. This track sounds very similar to Sonata Arctica with some extra orchestrations on top. The multiple vocal onslaughts return with the hectic “Sprouts of Terror”, for this album Clémentine Delauney seems to be missing and you can hear the difference in the tracks that use female vocals.

Another big item that changed in this release is the departure of long-time member Thomas Buchberger on guitars. The new addition to the band, Cris Tían (ex-Visions of Atlantis) does a pretty solid job filling in and also infusing some VoD elements into some of the tracks, like “Reason”. While there are some truly memorable and epic tracks like “Fate of Light”, this release feels a bit empty, lacking the bombastic exuberance of the band’s previous release both in the shared vocal melodies and the orchestrations.

Georg Neuhauser does a great job in handling the lead vocals, but the music feels a lot less inspired and more Power/Heavy metal than before, like the on the very anthemic “Spirit in the Flesh”. Longtime contributor to the band Oliver Philipps, seems to also be gone for this release, making the sound of the band shift a bit into unfamiliar territories. While we don’t really think the changes to the line-up and contributors are totally bad, it seems that things need at least one more album to click again. “Codex Atlanticus” is a decent release that showcases the band’s musical transition, so be warned when purchasing.

Band: Serenity Album: Codex Atlanticus

Label: Napalm Records

Release: January 29th, 2016

Official Site Social Media

Genre: Symphonic/Power Metal

Country: Austria

Rating: 78/100

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