"Sign of the Dragonhead" is the seventh studio album by the German symphonic metal band Leaves' Eyes, released 12,January 2018 through AFM Records.
The major change for Leaves’ Eyes over the past two years has been the departure of founding lead vocalist Liv Kristine. Now fronted by the operatic Elina Siirala of EnkElination and by founding member Alexander Krull, Leaves’ Eyes continues to work their trademarked “beauty and the beast” vocal lines. They once again take much of their inspiration from the history, mythology, and legends of the Scandinavian people. Continuing with the band are Thorsten Bauer (guitars and bass), Pete Streit (guitar), and Joris Nijenhuis (drums). There are some noticeable differences between the old and new vocalists – Elina has a more powerful voice that many will feel is better suited to the powerful and martial tone of the new release but lacks some of the subtlety and delicate emotional nuances that Liv brought to the softer tracks. Another notable difference is the fact that all tracks on Sign of the Dragonhead are sung in English – some may miss Liv’s inclusion of a tune or two in Norwegian, Finnish, or even Old English.
Leaves’ Eyes Sign of the Dragonhead is a fine addition to the band’s discography. Despite the loss of a very talented founding member, the band managed to step it up and evolve, choosing a singer that fully fits the band’s style without sounding like a copycat vocalist. Well executed and delivered with passion and fire on all fronts, Leaves’ Eyes demonstrates why they are the poster child for symphonic metal. Jubel!
Reviewed by Joe Mis for hardrockhaven.net.