Chevalier – Chapitre II [Demo] (2018) REVIEW

As much as I loved this Finnish band’s earthy, basement recorded debut ‘A Call to Arms’ for it’s combination of traditional heavy metal and reverb-soaked 80’s speed metal power, it didn’t impress me half as much as their split release with Legionnaire. An inch more clarity for the guitars gave Chevalier‘s sound the power it really needed to crush its way out of my speakers. I like to think of Chevalier‘s style as if you pressed the fast-forward button on an epic heavy metal band from the early 80’s. Sure, that is basically just a description of speed metal but there is a cacophony that happens within thier German speed metal influenced attack that is uniquely ancient in it’s affect. On this latest demo, released soon after the split 7″, the band have expanded their compositions even further into epic metal territory.

With three songs clocking in at over six minutes both guitarists are given room to build riffs into even greater fury as well as ride them long enough to whip out some fantastic solos. The sound of this demo is similarly fogged by it’s reverb-heavy atmosphere and rehearsal sound. Many complain about this aspect of their sound but I love the style and vocalist Emma’s echoed delivery only adds to the grand disorientation of the music. “The Messenger” is a perfect culmination of what Chevalier is doing better than before on this demo as they build peak intensity in the first two thirds of the song then blast into speed metal that recalls the best of Brocas Helm‘s raucous ‘Helm’s Deep’ demo. “Wrath of Steel” feels like it could have been ripped directly from a demo for Chastain‘s ‘Mystery of Illusion’ with some very strong lead guitar work throughout. Though it is a demo, and the sound quality is close to what the band intends as their sound, some of the lead guitar needs a very slight bump at times.

Highly recommended listening if you’re a fan of epic heavy metal and raw speed metal, the style on display here is as rhythmically dynamic as it is harrowing in it’s atmospherics and the lead guitars are always exceptionally tasteful. This is absolutely the type of band I love to support as they’ve developed a unique sound with classic heavy metal bones that appeals well outside the realm of traditional metal worship. I’ve no doubt the band is working on more material and this demo shows ever greater promise than their previous EP.

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Artist Chevalier
Type Demo
Released February 18, 2018
BUY/LISTEN on their Bandcamp! Follow Chevalier on Facebook
Genres
Heavy Metal, Speed Metal

Before a dying breath. 4.0/5.0

 

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