Savatage

The Dungeons Are Calling

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A much heavier effort than the preceding Sirens (although recorded at the same sessions), The Dungeons Are Calling was a less diverse, if more cohesive statement. The title track opens the album with haunting vocals and eerie guitar, soon erupting into one of the group's most intense anthems. "By the Grace of the Witch," the following song, is another fist-pumping number with an unshakable rhythm. It was on this album that the group first really started using synthesizers, and while none of the songs are driven by the instrument, they are used to nice effect on the title track and "City Beneath the Surface." It was in the lyrics, however, that the greatest difference was heard between The Dungeons Are Calling and Sirens. Here, almost all the songs are firmly entrenched in dark fantasy tales of hell, witches, and knights. "The Whip," the one exception, is an almost throwaway S&M number that does not show the band at their best. Although these topics might seem quite dated to many modern listeners, with the thundering guitar and rhythm section on such tracks as "Midas Knight" and "City Beneath the Surface," it's easy just to get lost in the blinding music.

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