Album Review | The Force Within - Cristiano Filippini’s Flames of Heaven

Album Review | The Force Within - Cristiano Filippini’s Flames of Heaven
Spotify Cover: Cristiano Filippini’s Flames of Heaven

Track List

1. The Force Within

2. We Fight for Eternity

3. Far Away

4. Against the Hellfire

5. Always with You

6. Dying for Love

7. Finding Yourself

8. Lightning in the Night

9. Missing You

10. Moonlight Phantom

11. The Angel and the Faith

12. Ab Angelis Defensa


The all-Italian band, Cristiano Filippini’s Flames of Heaven released their debut album "The Force Within" in November of 2020. The album starts with intro track "The Force Within" which paints a colorful ambient synth soundscape that introduces epic guitar riffage in a style that creates a gallant and symphonic mood early in the album.

"We Fight for Eternity" starts with bright synths and dramatic guitar chords, setting up heavy power metal themes from the get-go. Flames of Heaven excellently showcases melodic instrumental riffs and belting, powerful singing vocals. The nearly 7-minute track generates an uplifting mood and does a great job of portraying a feeling for the listener. "We Fight for Eternity" has an anthemic chorus with harmonic vocals and cinematic levels of atmosphere. Lead guitarist Michele "Dr. Viossy" Vioni displays multiple rapid yet incredibly technical guitar solos that help to further the grandiose feel of the music.

Next up is "Far Away" which starts with a beautiful synth intro before introducing strong guitar lead melodies. With what sounds like a new vocalist, Flames of Heaven shows a diverse vocal range and keeps their music fresh with multiple vocal layers. Soaring guitar solos separate vocals and display the band's instrumental prowess, making when the vocals rejoin the band even more powerful in contrast.

"Against the Hellfire" starts off with deep synths that have a more ominous, depthful sound. Flames of Heaven utilize a more serious and intense with "Against the Hellfire" creating a very different style from the previous songs that used a more warm and dynamic sound. A synth solo with rapid runs and droning notes leads into an equally grand guitar solo. "Against the Hellfire" builds anticipation with a lengthy bridge before exploding back into the passionate vocals that we have come to love.

Taking a different approach, "Always With You" starts with an immersive piano composure and a touching orchestra. Gentle singing joins along with the piano, creating an attractive ballad-like song that slows down the pace of the album. Abruptly, guitar kicks in as the song builds in energy and excitement. Flames of Heaven masterfully grows the intensity of the track gradually while still keeping orchestral ballad elements a main theme.

"Dying for Love" starts with a lively synth that bursts into guitar chugs and the emotional vocals that add so much to Flames of Heaven's music. The song's powerful chorus uses a strong hook and a choir effect that is sure to be stuck in the listener's head. "Dying for Love" brings back the intro synth in an explosive shift of energy along with pinch harmonics and bending notes in a symphonic and intricate instrumental and vocal sound.

"Finding Yourself" slows down the pace again, starting with a piano piece before introducing gentle bass and singing. After a melodic chorus with an emphasis on piano and vocal hooks, Flames of Heaven introduces the guitar and starts to add to the atmosphere, filling in the entire soundscape. With orchestral sounds, bright guitar, and piano, "Finding Yourself" takes the ballad format and is an incredible track.

"Lightning in the Night" starts with speedy, dynamic pacing using double bass drumming, racing guitar chugs, and fast vocals. Flames of Heaven picks up the pace drastically in a big energy shift, introducing another fresh style into the album and keeping the attention and interest of the listener. "Lightning in the Night" breaks down into just piano, mixing things up before launching you into a guitar solo.

Clocking in at 6 minutes, "Missing You" starts with a melancholy piano piece and sad-sounding orchestra strings. With tender singing and relaxing guitar tones, Flames of Heaven creates a meaningful and peaceful-sounding song with "Missing You" that does an excellent job of changing up the vibe and pacing of the album.

"Moonlight Phantom" starts with aggressive synth runs and a background choir that quickly shifts into strong lead guitar riffs and singing. Continuing a glorious symphonic metal sound, Flames of Heaven display their guitar intricacies, impressive vocal skills, and songwriting prowess with one of the final songs on the album.

"The Angel and the Faith" starts with dramatic chord progressions and a powerful symphony of instruments. Gentle vocals kick in along with aggressive orchestral chords as the song builds up for a chorus that is brimming with melody. After a moment of silence, fast orchestra strings are isolated before joining alongside one of our favorite vocal hooks of the album as guitar, drums, and vocals build up the songs atmosphere again. With a progressive sound, Flames of Heaven closes out the last full track of the album excellently with "The Angel of Faith".

"Ab Angelis Defense" is just over 2 minutes long and features a powerful sound filled with tolling bells and what seems to be an entire orchestra. The entirely instrumental track acts as a grand finale to "The Force Within".

Cristiano Filippini’s Flames of Heaven merges progressive metal, symphonic power metal, and hard rock in an attractive amalgamation of sounds that fans of the aforementioned genres are sure to love. You can stream "The Force Within" everywhere now!

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