Album Review: Saurom – Sueños
19th October 2015, 10:20
Posted by Chris

The Spanish folk metallers have flown under the radar for too long with their experimental style, and decided to create some more accessible music with their previous album ‘Vida‘. With the change in style dividing some of the fan base, the band power forward with a double album that features singles of some seriously powerful songwriting. Is ‘Sueños‘ the one to make amends?

Disc I [Las Caricias Del Alma]
01. Camino A Las Estrellas
02. Paz
03. El Carnaval Del Diablo
04. Músico De Calle
05. La Isla De Los Hombres Solos
06. Las Caricias Del Alma
07. El Elixir
08. Dalia
09. ¡Vive!
10. El Duende De La Ventana
11. El Reino De Las Hadas
12. Soñando Contigo
13. Más Allá Del Sendero Dorado

Disc II [La Partitura Secreta]
01. El Círculo Juglar
02. Naúfrago
03. El Beso
04. Bella Luna
05. Pintor De Suspiros
06. Memorias De Un Héroe
07. ¡Por Fin Viernes!
08. Sueños Perdidos
09. La Partitura Secreta
10. Rosa Negra
11. Latinoamérica Juglar
12. La Mujer Dormida (La Leyenda De Popocatépetl & Iztaccíhuatl)
13. Dulces Sueños
14. La Musa Y El Espíritu

Label: Maldito Records
Release date: 2nd October 2015

Under the radar of the mass wave of October 2nd releases come a band that has come to be one of my personal favourites over the years. I picked up their 2005 effort ‘Juglarmetal‘ in an Andalusian record shop by chance on a trip to Spain 10 years ago, just because the album art looked cool, but was instantly won over by their style.

Saurom created a brand of folk metal that played around with Gothenburg style guitar work, fast tempos, bouncing melodies and epic choruses – basically pushing all the right buttons in my personal taste. The next two albums they released were nothing short of brilliant, with 2008’s ‘Once Romance desde Al-Andalus‘ registering to this day as being one of my favourite albums of all time, mainly because of the massive diversity the band threw into the album while managing to stay consistent in theme. The band seemed to inherit influences from everywhere and ensured the album never got boring, but it’s perhaps that erratic nature that prompted the decision to change their style to a more identifiable one upon the release of ‘Vida‘ in 2011. The album changed to a more constructed folk rock style with memorable hooks and traditional folk instruments. While the album had it’s merits, it was a bit of a shock to what had been produced before.

3 years on comes ‘Sueños‘, and album I have eagerly anticipated with the release of the singles that preceded the release winning me over. Admittedly it was hard to accept the new Saurom style, but with strong songwriting you sometimes can’t deny that the music is good, and with the announcement of the double album you can’t help but expect something massive from this band.

The album is introduced in epic fashion with thundering sound effects covering bagpipes and flutes, suddenly merging into the massive single ‘Paz‘. The song highlights the simpler approach that Saurom are now taking, but also proves how well these tracks have been developed. The choruses is massive and features heartfelt sing-a-long moments that will capture you even if you don’t speak Spanish. While you would be fooled into thinking that with a track like that there is only a come down, it actually serves as a taster of things to come.

Sueños‘ has come as a surprise to me in the sense that the band have adamantly decided that their way forward in the simplistic construction of music, they have made it very apparent with the instrumentation that they have not forgetting their fans of old. The instrumentation is still as technical as it ever was, though in a different format – acoustic guitars fly and flutes and pipes are shredded throughout, often all harmonised with lead guitar and keyboard work. Tracks such as ‘Músico de Calle‘ represent that massive effort, while tracks like ‘La Isla de los Hombres Solos‘ bring the metal back with fast running drums and heavier guitar work.

The double album shows that Saurom have a lot to offer with this one with the second disc being just as good as the first adding all the aforementioned elements. Every track has some part to it that really strike home, such as the opening hooks of ‘El Elixir‘ and the headbanging contrast and sweet acoustics of ‘El Beso‘. It really is enough to merit that Saurom made the right choice when deciding to change their style – there isn’t a song on the album that isn’t well-written and features more than enough to keep fans of new and old happy. And if for some reason it wasn’t enough, the track ‘La Mujer Dormida‘ serves as an ultimate appeasement to the old fan directly tapping into the early style, and now ranks on a personal level as one of the most epic Saurom tracks ever published!

It’s more than likely that those reading this haven’t heard of Saurom and reading this to ask whether you should check them out. It’s safe to say that ‘Sueños‘ is an excellent starting point, and if you’ve heard this band before and were discontented with ‘Vida‘ like myself, the evolution of the sound over 3 years has definitely made this album one for every folk metal fan.

Saurom continue their change in sound to a more definitive folk rock style, but there’s no denying that every track in the album is catchy as hell and brilliantly written – capturing the band’s passion, emotion and impressive musical ability.