Virgin Steele - Invictus
When it comes to this album, it is no underestimation to say that it has it all; this is my favourite album with my favourite band.

The Invictus concept is quite profound and features different characters and dialogues, the battle between man and gods being the turning point, the lyrics are extremely well written, intriguing and creative.
Stripped down this album is very much about conquering the problems you face in life in a honourable, just and victorious way. Emotions as love, sorrow, anger, strength and hope are presented in expressive and moving passages, the album is highly relatable and there also lies one of its biggest strengths, I have countless times gained a lot of strength through these creations.

Virgin Steele has always had their own special style of Heavy Metal, very bombastic, symphonic, dramatic and all embracing in a special magical way. I'll try a small guide for the album.

The Blood Of Vengeance sets a creeping and dark shrouded opening stage before Invictus hits with tons of aggressiveness and David's high pitch voice roaming in the distance, a warning of the insanity to come. I simply love the detailed bass performance and overall the high amount of different passages just fit in so well, this song is a spectacular outcry of pure and unbound willpower.

The first 33 seconds of Mind, Body, Spirit is some of the most intense and dramatic I have every heard, those guitar riffs simply rip through even the most divine forged steel, just to use a fitting metaphor :)
The mind-blowing break towards the end where the nature of the whole song gets turned upside down is one of those that sends shivers down my spine, the atmospheric keys, mellow acoustic guitar rhythms and David's out of this world vocals are beyond words.

In The Arms Of The Death God is a very symphonic and dynamic intro for Through Blood And Fire, an ultra solid and driving creation given a catchy chorus that just sticks to your head immediately.

From the very start Swords Of The Gods opens its massive gate of mystic epicenes and tense atmospheres, this is truly bombast of the highest calibre. Technical bass and ingenious keyboard moods give this song a unique and captivating feeling.

How much magic can be produced in 1:19 minute? Well a lot if you use Gods Of Our Sorrow as an example. The fantastic piano melody and the heartfelt vocals makes it seem like the world stopped turning for just a while, and when the organ-like keyboard makes its entrance as a gentle supporting role I'm left in pure amazement, it's just so moving.

David's special vocal approach in the short Vow Of Honour shows just how talented he is, again an impressive and very fitting bombastic intro. Defiance opens with a massive guitar lead section and the jamming but very heavy riff works brilliantly through the whole track.

Dust From The Burning offers a more straight-ahead path of hard-hitting Metal excitement. A raw chorus line followed by operatic greatness gives way for at divine mixture of hard and soft aspects.
The intriguing guitar solo is an important piece of this intense and compact package.

Amaranth is another of those short interludes, filled by a mellow and reassuring mood.

A Whisper Of Death is one of those songs you never feel you finished exploring, it has an inventive structure and plenty of layers to keep you focused, just trying to follow suit with the amazing and variable drum delivery is a task of its own.
The slow symphonic mid-section is a spell-binding jam session that makes completely sense and really shows how complex and yet melodic this band can be at the same time.

Dominion Day puts out a hard and groovy rhythm section, the bright and extremely vivid guitar solo is one of Edward's best, he throws in a totally brilliant and unique guitar job in this one.
This is not the most mind-blowing track of the record but it fits in well and has a certain grand atmosphere to it, especially the profound vocals are awesome.

It's not only that A Shadow Of Fear is highly dramatic, it's the ingenious way it succeeds in being so. A fantastic refrain, genius solo, captivating vocal harmonies, powerful drums, complex bass play, amazing keyboard moods and a emotional ending passages that ones again makes the hair on my arms rise.

'Theme' from 'The Marriage Of Heaven And Hell' is that well known hymn-like melody brought forth with great bombast to give the right start to the ending 10-minute epic Veni, Vidi, Vici.
This one is without any doubt on the list of "best songs ever", its just so overly well structured and completely breathtaking.
The huge chorus not only makes you realise that this album is about finding strength to conquer all the crap we face in life, it makes you feel it and that's the true essence of Virgin Steele, you don't listen to their music, you feel it from the inner core of your mind, body and spirit.

Production-wise everything is top notch, a brilliant rich fundament and a very powerful sound for some very powerful music.

You get sucked right into this album without willing it or not, and before long you feel that you have reached another dimension of mental consciousness.
My way of life and the most inner thoughts and feelings I have flows into a beautiful connection with this album.

Written by Tommy
Monday, August 16, 2004
Show all reviews by Tommy

Ratings

Tommy: 10/10

Members: 9.87/10 - Average of 4 ratings.



Member ratings

Profile pictureSteen (Staff)

Rating: 10/10
My favourite Virgin Steele album. It has everything! All the songs are fantastic and fille... · Read more ·
Profile pictureSandra

Rating: 10/10
Invictus - What a unique album with a great concept. The album starts out with an epic and... · Read more ·
Profile pictureDark Lord

Rating: 10/10
No review was posted
This profile has not added a pictureYNGWIEVIKING

Rating: 9.5/10
I love each and every VIRGIN STEELE album ! But this one is my Favorite ,i just delete 0,... · Read more ·

This article has been shown 11850 times. Go to the complete list.



RevelationZ Comments


Comment by Cristóbal (Anonymous) - Tuesday, August 5, 2003
Totally agree with Steen and Tommy, this is by far the best Virgin Steele album and my favourite, it also has a special meaning for me.
!!!Together we are INVICTUS...!!!
BY THE GODS TO YOU ALL!!!!!!!
Rating: 10/10


Comment by s4revok (Anonymous) - Friday, September 26, 2003
i put this second after marriage of heaven and hell part II,though indeed david's voice is at it's best here.
I think that Marriage of heaven and hell part II won't be ever overpassed...that album is simply perfect.


Comment by Hein (Anonymous) - Wednesday, April 7, 2004
One of the best albums ever!!
Veni,vidi,vici is an incredible song. It gives me goosebumbs!


Comment by the F (Anonymous) - Thursday, April 29, 2004
oh my god!! this album made me cry for god sake!!! just listen to htat little emotional part in veni vidi vici, when I heard the piano I started to cry because it was.. was..gaah!! there are no word for it!!.....


Comment by Ryan (Anonymous) - Thursday, May 6, 2004
Man, I really want to get this album, I am new to VS and absolutely love what I do have by them. Can anyone tell me where this one might be available for purchase online?

Thanks in advance. \m/


Comment by nihilist (Anonymous) - Tuesday, August 17, 2004
I hope it's better then the "House of Atreus I" which make me sleep, they are so boring, too much clasic instruments...common, this is not even true metal IMO...


Comment by Christopher (Anonymous) - Thursday, August 19, 2004
I keep hearing good things about this album. However, I haven't been able to find it here in the US, and the import version sells for $49 on Amazon. I'll keep looking for it.


Comment by Steen (Staff) - Friday, August 20, 2004
Profile picture

View Profile


Comments: 518
Hi Christopher

You can order it from www.emp.de for 14 Euros. That's something close to $17.



Posted by Steen (Staff)
Friday, August 20, 2004

Comment by Christopher (Anonymous) - Sunday, August 22, 2004
Thanks!


Comment by Pat (Anonymous) - Monday, October 25, 2004
Complete perfection, looking over the fact that the Invictus track would sound much better with double bass. It's way too light, high pitched.. the cymbals kind of pierce through your ears.


Comment by Pat (Anonymous) - Monday, October 25, 2004
To those who have Hymns To Victory... is the remastered version much better?


Comment by Christopher (Anonymous) - Thursday, November 11, 2004
I'm glad I took your advice and bought this album -- it's fantastic.

I've always liked Virgin Steele, but I thought some of their albums were a bit spotty, with some really good songs along with some mediocre songs. It was as if they put every song they wrote on their albums instead if picking out the very best songs that they wrote for inclusion. Not so with Invictus. The album is very consistent all the way through.

Thanks again for the recommendation!


Comment by Tommy (Member) - Friday, November 12, 2004
Profile picture

View Profile


Comments: 74
Ratings: 31
Hey Pat.

The re-mastered version on Hymns To Victory is a bit clearer but they are much alike.

Tommy
RevelationZ Magazine

Posted by Tommy
Friday, November 12, 2004

Comment by Pat (Anonymous) - Sunday, December 12, 2004
Alright then. Thanks anyway.


Comment by spanish25 (Anonymous) - Monday, December 13, 2004
amazing album!

they´re much better than Manowar

10/10


Comment by alessandro (Anonymous) - Wednesday, July 11, 2007
definitely agree with the review: best album from the best metal band ever.


Comment by gizmo (Member) - Wednesday, December 26, 2007
This profile has not added a picture

View Profile


Comments: 140
Ratings: 4
It is the ultimate VS album after this the band slowly started to get boring, and now they actually suck sorry to say but their latest really is bad.

But back to Invictus, I must agree it really has almost everything you can ask for.

I have a special version of it that´s twice as high as the normal album, there is no bonus tracks on and it does not fit into my cd shelves. I am willing to sell it if anybody is interested. Bought it in Metalized in Copenhagen when it came out so i guess its a limited first edition but i am not sure. I have bought it again in a normal jewel case so it suit into my collection, but it is no fun to have 2 of same album.

Posted by gizmo
Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Comment by Gabriel (Member) - Friday, October 17, 2008
Profile picture

View Profile


Comments: 21
Ratings: 0
Totally Right!!!!

This Monster Album (one the Masterpieces of (Golden-)Metal History)lives in Mind,Body and Spirit!!!!!

And Remember:
they are One!

AG

Posted by Gabriel
Friday, October 17, 2008

Review by Steen (Staff) - Monday, December 2, 2002
Profile picture

View Profile


Comments: 518
My favourite Virgin Steele album. It has everything! All the songs are fantastic and filled with power and emotion and like Tommy says the album transcends all boundaries and inspires on every level. David Defeis has never sounded better than this. One of the greatest singers in the world. A masterpiece of Power, Metal and Life!

Rating: 10/10

Posted by Steen (Staff)
Monday, December 2, 2002

Review by Sandra (Member) - Thursday, May 14, 2009
Profile picture

View Profile


Comments: 36
Ratings: 25
Invictus - What a unique album with a great concept. The album starts out with an epic and formidable intro: The Blood of Vengeance. It is very thrilling with the screams and the galloping horses it sets a tense atmosphere.
The title song Invictus is very speedy, strong and when you are tired this will give you energy. "Die, fall on sword, fall on your knees" Awesome.
Mind, Body, Spirit start out with an unbelievable scream - out of this world - and raw guitar riffs! The bass is fantastic; Rob Demartino is a very talented bass player. The way the song ends is lovely. Dave goes from a raw to a light and beautiful voice and it is very touching. Very well written and it gives me something to think about. One of my favorites.
Through Blood and Fire is a song which really gives me power. The drumming is amazing and the chorus is very catchy.
The guitar solo in Sword of The Gods is fucking tight :D
God of our sorrows is defiantly one of my favorites; I just wish it was longer. I have often found myself pushing the repeat bottom and turning the volume as high as I can. It is a piece of art - beautiful. Full of soul, emotions and the passionate piano melody ahh. Once again I'm overwhelmed by David's voice. Very well written it gives me goose bumps "God of our sorrows your blade drinks deep, Earth feels the wound. Earth mother I am wronged, Earth mother I am wronged. What comes on the wind can only be slain, by he who knows, the Wind"
The drumming in Defiance is overwhelming and mind-blowing - the sound is great, galloping guitar and bass riffs, the lyrics are great and I can't stop singing a long "I fight for my people, my home and my land, fighting is our legacy on earth" soo cool and powerful I can't resist that chorus.
Dust from the burning: the riffs are crispy and raw, and the drumming is earthshaking.
A whisper of death the slow part is soo heavenly.

Vini Vidi Vici. IT's a PHENOMENON! - Seriously. It gives me goose bumbs(again), the beginning is to die for. Well written, breathtaking guitar solos, SUBLIME. This will get you - that's for sure, ahh man it's magical.

David Defies is one hell of a singer, wow, he just blows you away. An overwhelming unique singer, he is very passionate and believable.

Invictus is an album that will impress and make you feel you are somewhere else in another state of mind
It gives you an everlasting impression - all the feelings and the technical flair is outstanding. After listening to this one you will feel like you can breakthrough all the walls in life and do anything.
EPIC, powerful, full of feelings and tight solos, actually the whole thing is damn tight. It's very hard to criticize it because it is sublime.
" For best results play at maximum volume ! ! ! ! ! ! ! "- Virgin Steele
I can only agree ;)
10/10 - no doubt.

Rating: 10/10

Posted by Sandra
Thursday, May 14, 2009

Review by YNGWIEVIKING (Member) - Monday, July 27, 2009
This profile has not added a picture

View Profile


Comments: 11
Ratings: 11
I love each and every VIRGIN STEELE album !
But this one is my Favorite ,i just delete 0,5 to the perfect rating because of the average prod.
David DeFEIS is A GGGGGenius !
9,5/10

Rating: 9.5/10

Posted by YNGWIEVIKING
Monday, July 27, 2009










Review by Tommy
Virgin Steele - Invictus

Released by
Modern Music - 1998

Tracklisting
1. The Blood Of Vengeance
2. Invictus
3. Mind, Body, Spirit
4. In The Arms Of The Death God
5. Through Blood And Fire
6. Sword Of The Gods
7. God Of Our Sorrows
8. Vow Of Honour
9. Defiance
10. Dust From The Burning
11. Amaranth
12. A Whisper Of Death
13. Dominion Day
14. A Shadow Of Fear
15. 'Theme' From 'The Marriage Of Heaven And Hell'
16. Veni, Vidi, Vici


Style
Symphonic Heavy Metal

Related links
Visit the band page

Virgin Steele - Official Website

Other articles
The Marriage Of Heaven And Hell - Part One - (Tommy)

The Marriage of Heaven and Hell - Part Two - (Tommy)

Band Information - (Steen)

The House Of Atreus Act I - (Tommy)

Life Among The Ruins - (Tommy)

Age Of Consent - (Tommy)

Noble Savage - (Tommy)

The House Of Atreus Act II - (Tommy)

I - (Tommy)

Guardians Of The Flame - (Tommy)

Interview With David DeFeis - (Tommy)

Visions Of Eden - (Tommy)

Life Among the Ruins - (Alanna)

The Black Light Bacchanalia - (Steen)

The Black Light Bacchanalia - (Steen)



Z supported shopping






Ratings
1 - Horrifying
2 - Terrible
3 - Bad
4 - Below average
5 - Average
6 - Good
7 - Very good
8 - Outstanding
9 - Genius
10 - Masterpiece
666 - Unrated

More details...


Daily Spotlight
Candlemass - King of the Grey Islands
CoverThe Candlemass re-reunion with vocalist Messiah Marcolin didn't last for more than one album, some live shows and half an alb....
Read full review















Retro Reviews

(Tommy)
D:A:D - Helpyourselfish
Cover"Now, my word no one relies on Never said a foolish thing. Then again... never said a wise one It is never what you think - it's knowing when to quit If....
Read full review






(Tommy)
Metallica - Metallica
CoverSome albums contain brilliant songs, some sound phenomenal, others manage to create a completely unique vibe...Metallica's self titled album did all of this and so much more and I don't think it will ....
Read full review








Archive
 · Albums of the month
 · Retro Reviews
































Back to the top - © 2002-2011 RevelationZ Magazine - Back to the top