Album Review: Empress – Fateweaver (Self Released)

Empress is a symphonic metal up-and-coming five-piece from the United States, centered around classically-trained singer Barbara Blackthorne and main song writing mastermind and guitarist Vlad Khavin. Their debut full-length album ‘Fateweaver’ will be released on August 19th, 2022.

You have to be talented to stand out in the symphonic metal scene. A scene dominated by a small handful of giants, it’s one of the hardest genres to make a name for yourself in. Enter Empress to throw their lavishly decorated hat into the ring.

Kicking off with the bombastic grandness of Legion, the combination of orchestral melodies and punchy metal gets the blood pumping nicely. The added bonus of so much energy and the incredible vocals makes it one hell of a notable start. Followed by even more grandiosity with the roaring sound of Beyond the Sleep. The guitar solo on this track is razor sharp.

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Monumentally intense and heavy, the slight middle-eastern flavour that Chimera brings to the Empress sound is very cool sounding. Whereas the intense bombastic ability that Empress has returns in spates for the thumping epic that is The Fall of Kingdoms. Before the halfway point of the album arrives with a bang thanks to Black Arcana and the score-like Monarch follows that with thrilling symphonic highs.

There’s no arguing with the impact of this album, helped by the fact that it is concise. There’s no overdoing it or dragging it out from Empress. They have a selection to show and that tightness keeps things interesting as the album enters its twilight faze with the animated splendour that is Into the Grey and the powerful Immortelle. Leading to the gargantuan finale of Eventide. Where Empress exemplifies the saying ‘go big or go home’, ending this album with easily the most epic sounding track of the bunch.

You have to be talented to stand out in the symphonic metal scene. Good thing that’s exactly what Empress are.

Empress – Fateweaver Full Track Listing:

1. Legion
2. Beyond the Sleep
3. Chimera
4. The Fall of Kingdoms
5. Black Arcana
6. Monarch
7. Into the Grey
8. Immortelle
9. Eventide


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  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!

Empress – Fateweaver (Self Released)
  • The Final Score - 8/10
User Review
7.05/10 (4 votes)