Swords and sorcery and heavy metal have been linked since the primordial days of the genre. Both interests were most certainly pursued in basements across the country so it is no surprise that they would soon influence one another. The fantasy influence remains strong with many current metal bands including the likes of Pittsburgh’s Legendry and Texas’ Eternal Champion among others. Picking up the battle ax to continue the journey is Columbus’ Grayhawk with their ambitious new album The Sacred Seal.
The band’s first full-length is an epic 12 track story complete with an intro that serves as a prologue to the story that unfolds as well as the band themselves. The story really takes off with the galloping opener All Is One. Jack Proctor’s drums and Ron Camstra’s bass are the horses carrying Zac Szymusiak’s fiery guitar work into the first of many solos about three minutes into the first track. The band really starts to find it’s groove on Dragic’s Deal with a chugging riff and a hook that requires repeated listens. The album’s centerpiece Test Your Metal is a thrash metal epic that takes some proggy turns before it races to a glorious double-bass finish. The Sacred Seal closes with The Tale to Come… which hopefully means there are more metal adventures to come from Grayhawk. Are you willing to roll the dice on this journey?