ARRAYAN PATH – Thus Always To Tyrants
February 7, 2023, a month ago
The problem with December releases is that they are too late to be featured on best of lists. Sifting through the remnants of 2022, Arrayan Path raised a sword with fresh steel branded with power metal mastery on their monumental concept and ninth full-length album Thus Always To Tyrants. The Cyprus-based unit chronicles the history of their country and the tale of King Evagoras.
As the band states in a press release: “The chronicle covers the origins of the story, the King’s life, death, wars, achievements and a short aftermath. There will be Usurpers, there will be Persians, there will be Spartans, battles and sieges, there will be blood!”
Sounds pretty metal if you ask me. The effort is over an hour long, but it’s well-earned and deserved with diverse material – biting riffs, epic passages, cultural influences, lush choruses, and incredible vocals with engaging lyricism that brings this story to life. Arrayan Path didn’t want to do the history of their country wrong as each track is brimming with life that uses just enough symphonic instrumentation. The guitars (courtesy of stellar duo Socrates Leptos and Christoforos Gavriel) are at the forefront along with Nicholas Leptos’ commanding vocal delivery. The drums from Stefan Dittrich don’t do too much, but the way his double-kick beats mesh with the guitar melodies are majestic and Miguel Trapezaris offers solid bass work.
The music holds different moods from sturdy and speedy (“Crossing Over To Phoenicia”, “Of Royal Ancestry”) to dramatic and bold (opener “Oh Dark Tears (Aftermath)”, “In Salamis”) to epic and progressive (“The Legend Of Evagroas”, “Raid Of The Achaemenids”). Power and trad metal fans should eat this one up – Thus Always To Tyrants is an outstanding record and Arrayan Path is worthy to bend the knee to.