The Saberlight Chronicles

Label: Scarlet Records
Three similar bands: Cryonic Temple/Damnation Angels/Twilight Force

Rating: HHHHHHH (6/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
01. Until the Fires Die
02. Atlas
03. Glory Days
04. Oak and Ash
05. Hearts Upon the Hill
06. Scars and Shrapnel
07. The Hours of Wintertime (CD/digital exclusive)
08. Glint
09. The Saint Beyond the River
10. Silhouette
11. Still Enough (CD/digital exclusive)
12. Avalon

Matthew Corry - vocals
Sam Browne - guitar
Brad Wosko - guitar
Callum Tuffen - drums



Produced, mixed and mastered by Richard Campbell at Orpheus Studio, London
Artwork by Peter Sallai (Accept, Sabaton, Brothers Of Metal)

Released 2022-07-15
Reviewed 2022-07-22

scarlet records

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You know, in March this year I wrote in the review of Trick or Treat’s brilliant Creepy Symphonies that the likelihood of a better power metal album is practically non-existent. Challenge accepted! Said Scarlet Records (probably not but they might have) and came up with Fellowship’s debut The Saberlight Chronicles, the worst power metal album in decades… just kidding, a worthy competitor to these Creepy Symphonies. The way serious subjects are weaved into a frame of ridiculous catchiness and smile-inducing power metal is eerily similar, it should be said though that they are not that similar in terms of sound, just approach – Fellowship’s style is more epic and poppier – but both are enjoyably ridiculous yet with subjects that are important hiding underneath what you notice at first glimpse.

You just know what to expect when the first track opens, it is silly and amusing, a brilliant opening song. Classic power metal with bombastic sound, super-melodic and choruses that are catchy as hell is what we are getting with this album. It sounds like a band with a good distance, and who doesn’t take itself too seriously – a requirement to make good power metal is to avoid taking oneself too seriously. Almost all the best bands in the genre have this air of not taking itself too seriously, Freedom Call, Edguy, Trick or Treat, Skeletoon, these guys and more. I think you become boring like Rhapsody, or such bands if you take yourself too seriously – the music is seriously silly and to be great you must give in to that and that is what it feels like Fellowship is doing. But like all these greatest guys there is this clever undertone of more serious elements woven into the music. Fellowship tackles mental health issues in a life-affirming storytelling – I find that very appealing.

The Saberlight Chronicles is one of these albums that you sing along with almost at once, and I get back to that Trick or Treat album because it is such a surprise with another so great album the same year. I think it was at least two-three years since last time I awarded the same rating to a power metal album. There is only one modern power metal album on Hallowed that has received the highest rating, and that was over a decade ago now. Only about a handful or so have received the same rating, so that tells you that we have a very special album here, and a special year. 2022 may be average or below in terms of most albums released but I know that at least three of the albums I have written about I will keep returning to almost daily, and this one is one of those. The others, if you are interested, is Creepy Symphonies and F.E.A.R. by Stand Atlantic, what a great collection of pick-me-ups when I am bored at work.

It would be unwise for you to not check out this one, it is a highlight of the year and probably one of the best power metal albums in the last two decades. Funny that Scarlet Records have released the two best power metal in the last couple of years. The only backside that exists is that this album is over an hour long, that is a bit much even though all the songs are brilliant. But that is a small price to pay for power metal ecstasy – so, check it out already!