After having listened to the first "single" from the album (Savior Machine), the promo of the new Black Fate release became one of the most anticipated arrivals in my mailbox for this year. Black Fate are one of these bands that I strongly remember from my adolescent years when I started to explore the Greek Heavy Metal scene. I had listened to their first demo but (to be very honest) not having been very much impressed (If I remember correctly I had listened to it at the same time when the first demo of Breaking Silence was released and the comparison was unfortunately not very favourable for Black Fate) I had since then not followed their career so meticulously. But now this release shows how much progress the band and the Greek metal scene have made. From amateurish productions, funny accents, lyrics written in primary school level English, album and cassette covers which were looking like they have been hand drawn by 5 year old kids to full professionalism and to a fully developed, distinct, trademark Greek "sound".
This "Greek sound" is what an experienced listener will immediately notice upon playing the album. Catchy melodies, strong riffs, epic rhythms and progressive structures which remove nothing from the songs power and dynamics. Add to the previous the excellent vocals and the flawless production - which is neither over-digitalised nor raw (a usual, false perception about how "True" metal should sound) - and you have one of the most well composed and executed Heavy Metal (in its literal meaning) albums of the year.
Ithaca was released on October 27.