Cain’s Offering: ‘Stormcrow’

Cain's Offering - Stormcrow

CAIN’S OFFERINGCain's Offering - Stormcrow
STORMCROW
Released on May 19, 2015 (Frontiers Records)

Review:
Power metal greatness is delivered once again on Cain’s Offering‘s sophomore effort Stormcrow. The term supergroup is too easily thrown around these days, so I rather call them a gathering of Finland’s power metal elite. This time around, founding members Timo Kotipelto (Stratovarius) and Jani Liimatainen (ex-Sonata Arctica) are joined by keyboardist extraordinaire Jens Johansson (Stratovarius), Jonas Kuhlberg on bass and Jani Hurula on drums.

“Stormcrow” starts the record on a powerful note with the tagline rising from the ashes immediately making all involved shine. Johansson’s amazing keyboards can be heard throughout the song. Next comes “The Best of Times” which brings us more melodic prowess, boasting a very catchy chorus. A splendid bass line from Kuhlberg and Kotipelto’s remarkable voice start the slightly slower “A Night to Forget”, containing some of the best lyrics on the record. Speed returns with “I Will Build You a Rome”, a great tune that boasts all the classic traits from Scandinavian power metal.

The orchestral ballad “Too Tired to Run” continues the album with a slower tempo and more amazing lyrics. The double tempo returns in “Constellation of Tears” quickly followed by the Nightwish-esque “Antemortem” which they pull out tremendously well. Bass and vocals team up again on the passionate “My Heart Beats for No One”. The instrumental “I Am Legion” is a masterclass on technical virtuosity, very orchestral and grand leading to the upbeat “Rising Sun”. The record’s finale comes with “On The Shore”, a calmer song that leaves you cringing for more, but if the gap between this and their first records is taken as an indicator, we’ll have to wait a while.

Throughout the album, there’s some pretty impressive “back and forth” between Johansson and Liimatainen which brings a lot to the songs and makes the whole experience dynamic for the listener. As always, and the one thing I absolutely admire and love about him, is that you can understand every single word Kotipelto is singing. This is not a common treat on a vocalist of  this beloved genre(s), and something that has put him in front of many of his peers.

If you’re fond of either Cain’s Offering‘s first record Gather The Faithful, Stratovarius or the Jani era of Sonata Arctica, you are surely going to enjoy what is delivered on Stormcrow.

Track List:
01. Stormcrow
02. The Best Of Times
03. A Night to Forget
04. I Will Build You a Rome
05. Too Tired To Run
06. Constellation of Tears
07. Antemortem
08. My Heart Beats For No One
09. I Am Legion
10. Rising Sun
11. On The Shore

Band Members:
Timo Kotipelto – vocals
Jani Liimatainen – guitars, backing vocals
Jens Johansson – keyboards
Jonas Kuhlberg – bass
Jani Hurula – drums

Production:
Produced by Jani Liimatainen
Mixed by Matias Kupiainen
Mastered by Mika Jussila

Band Websites:
Frontiers Records
Facebook

Reviewed by Eduardo for Sleaze Roxx, July 2015