Trick or Treat? The age-old question asked by children the world over on Halloween night. Originating from yesteryear in order to appease the souls of the dead by acting out a small performance or reciting verse. Whilst this practice is more common in the month of October, Italian power metallers TRICK OR TREAT have brought us their own blend of mischief in the delightful form of their new album titled Creepy Symphonies
Trick Or Treat most certainly pays homage to TIM BURTON’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, Creepshow and other horror film scores from the 1980’s. This nursery-rhyme styled introduction whilst tongue in cheek is quite chilling too.
Creepy Symphony could quite easily be the best theme song for Halloween going forwards. Whilst there’s the realisation that children of today are numb to everything and don’t scare as easily as they once did, that childlike innocence has been lost because of how technology has developed over the years: “Kids with mobiles and videogames, are just impossible to scare, they look aloof, emotionless, they miss the magic in the air!” Structurally there’s plenty of rhyming couplets utilised in the lyrics which makes this song infectious from the offset.
Have A Nice Judgement Day details the effects of climate change and is a prophetic view on how things will change for the worst: “I will look through my sunglasses, while the world will burn in flames.” In a nutshell, we should all be aware of this message and take action to prevent our own downfall.
Crazy is a lot of fun, whilst being incredibly melancholic detailing the stress of the daily grind. In essence it makes you want to pause take a step back, live your life as expected and take time out for yourself too: “Damn! It’s not the life I was looking for, And I still have exciting dreams I forgot in my closet” There is some wonderful harmonising and utilisation of backing vocals throughout this song that totally make you want to sing along.
Whilst Peter Pan Syndrome is usually a metaphorical sign of someone not growing up, what TRICK OR TREAT have done with Peter Pan Syndrome (Keep Alive) is a reflective and nostalgic take on life and that you should embrace your inner child: “and you’ll not forget the wonder, for the little things of life” This one does have an early SONATA ARCTICA vibe about it too.
Escape From Reality is of a much faster pace to the past couple of tracks. It makes you want to bang your head from the offset. It wouldn’t be out of place on a HELLOWEEN or AVANTASIA album. It details the importance of being able to follow your own path, not to be held back by anyone and to try and enlighten others too: “Cause you just won’t let me free to be, what I feel, you’ll never understand”
Falling Over The Rainbow is a song that covers the fact that whilst you may be a workaholic and successful that you cannot sacrifice your own happiness for it “now that I have reached the goal, I feel empty, without a soul. Maybe it wasn’t my desire, I should focus higher.” Maybe we all need to take a step back and as reflected over the past few songs, take some time for ourselves, find a new hobby, reinvigorate an old passion and do things for us rather than slaves to society.
Queen Of Likes is extremely reflective of how much time people spend on social media and the negative impacts this has and how it consumes one’s lives through addiction: “deprive your sleep for, scrolling posts with no meaning at all, you’re poisoning your mind, and you don’t realise it” There is also a monologue section within this song that is very poignant indeed.
April does remind me musically through its iambic pentameter of Beauty School Dropout from the musical GREASE, however what we have here is a dramatic monologue from any one of our favourite heroes in a half shell expressing their love for April. It shows that whilst extremely proficient musicians, TRICK OR TREAT really do know how to have fun and not take themselves too seriously.
The Power Of Grayskull keeps in line with just having fun. This piece is an absolute power metal homage to Masters Of The Universe. From it’s synth-led introduction, gradually building up to a crescendo that channels 1980’s soundtracks of both tv and the silver screen before the mighty metal assault begins. You’ll want to grab either your air instrument of choice or favourite action figure for this: the soundtrack to your imagination. This is majestic, magnificent, and extremely over the top but that is what makes you love this song even more.
There is no trickery involved here. These Creepy Symphonies are an absolute treat! Whilst there’s some extremely serious themes covered within there’s also the juxtaposition of some fun fuelled tracks that will most definitely lighten your mindset and put a smile on your face. Shockingly, this was my first introduction to the Italian masters TRICK OR TREAT. All I want to do now, is to immerse myself in their back catalogue, to further embrace their own blend of positive and playful power metal.
Words: Martin White
Creepy Symphonies is out now.
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