CRYSTAL VIPER – Tales Of Fire And Ice

CRYSTAL VIPER – Tales Of Fire And Ice
AFM Records
Released Year:
1. 1. Prelude2. 2. Still Alive3. 3. Crystal Sphere4. 4. Bright Lights5. 5. Neverending Fire6. 6. Interlude7. 7. Under Ice8. 8. One Question9. 9. Tomorrow Never Comes (Dyatlov Pass)10. 10. Tears of Arizona11. 11. Dream Warriors (Dokken cover)

Well it seems like yesterday that CRYSTAL VIPER amazed us with their debut album “The Curse of the Crystal Viper”. At that point of time (2007) the scene was struggling for a hot newcomer and Crystal Viper seemed to fill the position. Not only they were powered by powerful female voice of Marta Gabriel, they also had a bunch of strong and heavy compositions to share. Well CRYSTAL VIPER did manage to become a popular, commercial act, yet their following albums failed to capture the essence of their debut. At least to my ears.

Anyways, fast forward 12 years after the “Curse…” album, CRYSTAL VIPER, now a successful band releases their seventh album. And since I haven’t heard a note from them since “Crimen Excepta” I was quite curious of that would I expect.

Well it turns out that CRYSTAL VIPER didn’t alter their recipe of success, instead they made it a little bit formulaic. Which means that instead of classic heavy metal the clueless listener will come across a Heavy / Power album with direct links to the 90’s stuff. Indeed, it was quite a surprise to listen to songs like “Under ice”, “Still alive” or “Crystal Sphere” since it has been ages from the last time, I heard that style.

Strong melodies, catchy anthemic choruses, fast drums, some neoclassic stuff in the solos and a shitload of influences from early STRATOVARIUS, HELLOWWEN, ANGRA, RHAPSODY, FREEDOM CALL, GAMMA RAY, HEAVENLY etc.

There is an energetic flux throughout the album and a very positive vibe. The songs are more enjoyable than the bands recent past and the vocals are great. Marta is a pro, and this is obvious in the way she sings: she uses her voice in an excellent way and manages to transmit emotions in each song. The guitar work is great, not prolix but rather purposeful.

I would also add some extra points to the album thanks to this great cover on the classic “Dream Warriors” originally by DOKKEN. The band has brought it on their standards -mainly focusing on the classic Heavy Metal touch-, still managing to capture the original’s magic.

Well if you are in the mood to add some serious European Power Metal influences on the classic Heavy Metal vibe of your music, well this is a record for you. CRYSTAL VIPER are aware of your thirst. And they are basically offering you this actual musical combination. You will be satisfied as a fan while they are taking their overall sound a step forward as a band. Everyone is happy.


Previous article DRAGONLORE – Lucifer’s Descent
Next article GOTHIC STONE – Haereticus Empyreum
While he struggles between trash and elaborate culture, Zippo, finds himself dwelling into the deepest and most notorious Heavy Metal paths. Or at least that is what he thinks…
Forgotten Scroll Fanzing Issue #6

Issue #6 Out Now


Follow Us


CLOVEN HOOF – Heathen Cross

None can describe better the essence of “Heathen Cross” than Lee Payne, founding member (bass) of CLOVEN HOOF and the only one remaining in...

WARLORD: The legend of William J Tsamis lives – Interview and...

To tell you the truth I was a little bit skeptical when I first learned about the Warlord tribute project set by drummer and founding member Mark Zonder and singer Giles Lavery to honor the music and memory of founder guitarist William J Tsamis who unfortunately passed away back in 2021. I was looking at the facts very closely, reading announcements about forthcoming live shows, new line up and a new album. The response from the fans was massive including both positive and negative (or very negative) comments about the above facts. "How can Warlord exist without Bill Tsamis?", they were asking. One afternoon I got a call from Giles Lavery himself asking me if I wanted to do an advance review of the forthcoming Warlord album. I replied positively still being in this skeptical mood. It all went away after the first listen... William J Tsamis was there. His music, his legend, his compositions, evolved into complete songs. In total excitement I texted Giles a single message "Bill is alive". The very next evening found Mark, Giles and I talking about the album, about Bill, about the music and the legacy. It was late at night when we ended the call. I asked them if I can publish our conversation and they got no problem. So here it is again: Me talking with Warlord. The usual stuff I am doing the last 25 years for various reasons. But this time I would not call this conversation an interview. To my eyes this is a big ethical, artistic and soulful statement, by some people who want to keep the Dream, alive.