For the instrumentalist, one of the bigger challenges is to create an own identity. At face value, the lead singer gives a band its identity, since his/her look and voice is one of a kind. He/she is instantly recognisable. Antonello Giliberto’s tone is his identity. When he solo’s, it’s like Paganini’s violin, technically thrilling yet maintaining strong melody. His love for the classics, like Johann Sebastian Bach and Yngwie Malmsteen (yes, I dare elevate Yngwie to that most celebrated category of classical composer) inform his compositions. When you read Giliberto’s biography, it is clear that he is a guitar scholar, having studied at Accademia di Chitarra Moderna, a Sicilian academy specialising in modern guitar. He has a keen interest in the expressive qualities of the guitar, as he’s attended workshops with Kee Marcello and Mattias IA Eklundh, amongst others. I was likewise pleased to learn that he contributed guitar on three of Gabriels’ epic “Fist of the Seven Stars: Act 2”, reviewed earlier.
His choral arrangements are impressive, and I enjoy his strong leaning towards neoclassical metal. “Wrath of the Northmen” stands out for me in this regard. There is a great appreciation of dynamics, as the musical crescendo towards the 5 minute mark dissolves into the peaceful ebb and flow of an ocean. I also enjoyed the contrast between choir and electric guitar in “Iron Shadows in the Moon”, and it’s amazing how well symphonic brass and distorted electric guitar work together. Neoclassical metal for the win!