I am a big fan of symphonic black metal but I always wondered if I would ever stumble across a band that did not play metal but done entire songs with gothic choirs and orchestrations. I found that when I first discovered Nox Arcana the duo of Joseph Vargo and William Piotrowski are brilliant songwriters I am just amazed at how well written the songs are on all Nox Arcana albums and especially Phantoms of the High Seas the first Nox Arcana review to be featured here.
Nox Arcana’s album Phantoms of the High Seas takes me back to a time of wonder when pirates ruled the world’s seas on quest to find new distant lands and unearth buried treasure the pirates would start on their voyages across the open sea as the sound of waves would crash against their ships as huge square sails would prevent the ship from sailing into the wind. Some of the pirate ships would fall victim to the seas and be claimed and lost forever but only a phantom would remain of these pirates. Fate of the Tempest features some clean vocals by Ty Cook which was a nice surprise on the album.
Some of my favorite tracks on the CD are Edge of the World, Pirates, Oblivion is pure orchestral magnificence on all levels this track requires the repeat button, Against the Storm, Out of the Mist, Ghost Ship, and Skull and Crossbones based on the atmosphere the songs contain it is very eerie and mystical in a way with the gothic choir and orchestrations in other words this CD is practically flawless. Crossfire is a track where you can hear cannons shooting off in the background. The album contains twenty-one tracks in total none of which get boring as the ideas in each one seems to flow quite well with the next tracks.
I recommend in buying a copy of Phantoms of the High Seas the album is becoming one of my favorite releases by Nox Arcana and another added bonus for the excellent cover artwork. The sound quality of Phantoms of the High Seas is outstanding as well there is a perfect balance of all the individual instruments that are used on the songs throughout the CD, especially when listening to the album on headphones the pirate symphony has now begun their orchestra. Be ready to set sail once you put Phantoms of the High Seas into your CD player. Head on over to Nox Arcana's official site or the Monolith Graphics website to order a copy of the CD.