Trivium In The Court Of The Dragon Review: Track-By-Track Breakdown

Trivium have been busy! Only a year following the release of their critically-acclaimed album “What The Dead Men Say”, the band return with yet another epic record. When I say epic, I mean it literally. “In The Court Of The Dragon” Is a concept record with the band creating their own mythologies and medieval lore. The nine-track long record continues the return-to-form established on the previous record, but the band take the idea even further. The album is more in line with the band’s fourth record “Shogun” than anything they wrote since. However, does this thrashy and heavy record hold a torch to the albums of the band’s past? I discuss if the band capture lightning in a bottle twice (in one lockdown) in the current review. So let’s jump on in and break it down in this Trivium In The Court Of The Dragon track-by-track album review.

FFO: Bullet For My Valentine, Killswitch Engage, All That Remains, Avenged Sevenfold

Listen to: In The Court Of The Dragon, Feast Of Fire, A Crisis Of Revelation, No Way Back Just Through

Trivium is:

Matt Heafy – vocals, guitar

Corey Beaulieu – guitar, backing vocals

Paolo Gregoletto – bass guitar, backing vocals

Alex Bent – drums, percussion

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In The Court Of The Dragon Track-By-Track Review

X

X – Trivium

Trivium nail exactly how a concept album should start. “X” is a short introduction track that sets the mood for the medieval themed record. The title track and first single for the album, “In The Court Of The Dragon”, has an aggressive and sudden beginning, so I can appreciate the buildup here. The intro track sounds like something you would hear in World of Warcraft or Lord of the Rings. Godly chants can be heard amongst the slowly progressing instrumentation. The intro concludes with a fitting dragon like roar before exploding into the title track for the record.

In The Court Of The Dragon

In The Court Of The Dragon – Trivium

The buildup was definitely worth it. “In The Court Of The Dragon” is a perfect single to showcase the album. The title track represents everything contained within this epic concept record. The song is full of heavy verses, a triumphant chorus, wild instrumentation, world-building lyrics, and medieval influence. When I first heard this track Trivium immediately had my attention. While there is a lot to admire about the track, it is the chorus that steals the show for me. However, this chorus would not stick the landing as well if the verses were not so heavy and exhilarating.

Additionally, I really enjoy the drum work throughout the song, but especially within the chorus. It adds some heaviness to the melodic portions that add to it in an exciting way. I find that everything just works together on this album in a beautiful way that makes it a standout record of the year. This is even more impressive when you consider that Trivium just released “What Do The Dead Men Say” only last year. The band seem to have no shortage of ideas, and I am here for it. So what does the rest of the album have in store? Well the title track definitely represents the album well, so if you enjoyed this single, you’re in for one hell of a ride.

The music video for “In The Court Of The Dragon” is interesting as well. It features an extended version of the track that contains the intro track “X” as well. I highly recommend checking it out above if you want to see a solid visual representation of the record.

Like A Sword Over Damocles

Like A Sword Over Damocles – Trivium

If “In The Court Of The Dragon” was (somehow) not heavy enough for you, don’t fret as “Like A Sword Over Damocles” is a new heavy fan-favorite. The track immediately starts off with some teasing blast beats followed by a threatening riff before exploding into an onslaught of thrashy instrumentation. Vocalist Matt Heafy shows off some melodic yet catchy screams throughout the verse. I particularly like the end of the verse when he gets a bit more aggressive with his vocals. The chorus of this track is far more medieval sounding than the previous track (and maybe the majority of the album as well). At first it was a bit weird to me, but it absolutely fits the tone of the record.

“Like A Sword Over Damocles” only gets heavier as it runs. The track even features an infamous metalcore “Blegh” at the 3:18 mark. The whole minute following is full of heavy instrumentation and solos that make this song a treat for Trivium fans. This track does a great job at showcasing the talented instrumentation the band is known for. If you aren’t sold by the last two tracks, this album is likely just not your cup of tea.

I am impressed that the band not only are able to write a concept album lyrically, but they really captured it within the sound as well. This adds a sense of meaningfulness to me, and it gives the record its own identity. Granted, I have always visualized Trivium’s music as sounding more medieval in nature, but “In The Court Of The Dragon” takes this to the next level.

Feast Of Fire

Feast Of Fire – Trivium

“Feast Of Fire” is without a doubt my favorite song from the record. The track isn’t as heavy as the last two, but it is contagious and energetic all the same. I think Matt sounds great throughout the whole track. It is definitely the catchiest song and safest from the record, but I think Trivium nail it here. The verses mostly consist of singing, but the end has some screams added to it. The underuse of screams in this track only adds to the effectiveness of them when they are utilized. I admire the band for being able to release such a heavy record, yet still feature an arena-ready anthem that fits right in with the rest of the record.

The chorus is the star of “Feast Of Fire”. I have been hooked since the first time I heard it. I think it may even be one of the catchiest choruses of the year. Despite the chorus sounding huge, it doesn’t carry the weight of the track all on its own. The verses sound great and set the mood for the track, and there is also a radical breakdown and solo in the bridge of the track. When the most accessible song on the record is still this heavy, you know Trivium are bringing the heat.

The final chorus adds some fantastic backing melodies that make it refreshing. Just as the track seems to be coming to a fitting end, the band fire out a short final breakdown. I truly admire the energy contained within “In The Court Of The Dragon”, and while this more radio-friendly track is my favorite from the album, it wouldn’t be as great without the heavy flairs contained throughout it.

The Crisis Of Revelation

A Crisis Of Revelation – Trivium

Another song that tracks off with some ridiculous drum work. “A Crisis Of Revelation” is a perfect follow up to the accessible single “Feast Of Fire”. Coincidentally, it is also my second favorite track from the record. The song is fast and relentless, starting off with quick and heavy instrumentals, and following up the chorus with some as well. Speaking of the chorus, while it isn’t as powerful of the chorus from the previous track, it is still one of the best from the album. Something about it is contagious to me, and leaves me wanting more. It is calm yet still triumphant, and it splits up the instrumental and heavy portions of the track well.

The sweeping solos sound great throughout the track, and like the title track, I feel like this song has it all. At the 4:14 mark there is even a drum solo. This is easily one of my favorite moments from the album. I haven’t heard drums get the forefront in a metalcore record in a long time, and drummer Alex Bent kills it here. After my initial listen, I went back and listened to the drum solo several times. This is just one of the many occasions where Trivium switch things up and get creative in their work.

Due to the great chorus and masterful instrumentation within this track, I don’t think I could ever get sick of “A Crisis Of Revelation”. The song is a new favorite of mine, and along with the previous track “Feast Of Fire”, may even be a favorite of the whole year.

The Shadow Of The Abattoir

The Shadow Of The Abattoir – Trivium

“The Shadow Of The Abattoir” is another track where Trivium take the medieval concept and run with it. Seriously, this track sounds like a bard is performing at a medieval pub. The song has a folk-like sound to it – and outside of the chorus- it is really calming. Matt puts on a mellow voice unlike the rest of the album, and it is a nice change of pace. While I am definitely more partial to the band’s thrashier and heavier sound, I love this track in the context of the entire record. “In The Court Of The Dragon” is a concept album that actually has some work put into it to sound relevant to the writing. “The Shadow Of The Abattoir” is one of those tracks that excel when heard during a full album playthrough.

The Shadow Of The Abattoir Is A Song Of Many Sounds

Earlier I mentioned that the chorus is different than the rest of the song, and that is true. The chorus is as triumphant as ever and it hits like a truck. It isn’t heavy or anything, but the instrumentals are more energetic during it and Matt belts out loud and proud. However, the chorus isn’t the only exhilarating part of the track. After the three minute mark the song evolves into a totally different track.

The song gets drastically heavier and it hard to even imagine it is the same song. The song recognized from the first three minutes is gone. The instrumentals thrash and crash for the next two and a half minutes. Trivium have always been one of the more progressive metalcore bands, but this takes it to a whole new level. This is easily one of the most theatrical and dynamic tracks on the record. With flavors of folk, metalcore, thrash, and progressive metal, “The Shadow Of The Abattoir” is an impressive spectacle.

No Way Back Just Through

No Way Back Just Through – Trivium

Another highlight from the album, “No Way Back Just Through” is a thrashy track that has become a new fan-favorite nearly overnight. The song is currently the band’s second most popular song on Spotify. This is pretty impressive for a non-single! It is no mystery why this song is becoming so popular. The energy from the song never fades, and the chorus is catchy and accessible. This track may be a new perfect representation of Trivium. Outside of “Feast Of Fire”, this track may be one of the introductory tracks I would use to introduce a new listener to the band. The track is heavy, but not entirely threatening or inaccessible. I find the track to be one of the more well-rounded songs from “In The Court Of The Dragon”. Perhaps this is a reason for the song’s success.

“No Way Back Just Through” is incredibly easy to listen to. The song always ends before I am ready for it to conclude. This isn’t just due to a short runtime, as the track is reasonably lengthy. While the band surely have longer tracks, this song runs at nearly four minutes in length. The song does pass by quickly though, as it is crafted to tightly and efficiently. The song never gets boring, the energy never dies, and it doesn’t over stay its welcome at any time. This structure could also be a reason for the tracks success. The shorter runtime and energetic nature of the track makes it an easy choice for Spotify playlists. These playlists can bring a ton of attention to deserving tracks, and this is definitely a deserving track!

Fall Into Your Hands

Fall Into Your Hands – Trivium

Following the incredibly accessible “No Way Back Just Through”, is the incredibly inaccessible “Fall Into Your Hands”. This is what makes the track great though. This track is the longest track on an album full of long tracks. This is also the biggest strength of the song. The band uses the long seven minute and 46 second runtime wisely. Like “The Shadow Of The Abattoir” before it, this song changes in style and nature countless times. Seriously, there is a lot to unpack here.

“Fall Into Your Hands” is another track that starts off with some impressive drumming from Alex. This incredible drum work continues in the spotlight for the whole first minute of the track. The accompanying riff slowly gains the forefront as the heavy verse kicks in. Matt’s voice sounds great in this heavy verse. He sounds aggressive and his screams are deep and layered. Fans of heavier Trivium material are going to love this one. The sheer heaviness isn’t the selling point of this track though, as this progressive epic has a ton of layers to it.

Fall Into Your Hands Is A Non-Linear Epic

The chorus is another one that captures the fantasy of “In The Court Of The Dragon”. It sounds triumphant and mythical, once again it is as if a bard is singing his heart out. This chorus isn’t the only part of the song with singing though. Around the four minute mark there is an entirely different singing portion that isn’t a repeat of the chorus. Matt softly sings until the track bleeds into a solo. This solo is soon interrupted by impressive growls until a second different solo kicks in.

This track is wildly non-linear and I love it. I am especially impressed that such a long track only features the chorus twice. Most three minute long tracks run the chorus three times. Trivium are at their best when they defy expectations like they do with “Fall Into Your Hands”. How can Trivium possibly follow up this one?

From Dawn To Decadence

From Dawn To Decadence – Trivium

“From Dawn To Decadence” starts off with complementing drum and guitar work that only a band like Trivium could pull off so masterfully. The instrumental unity here is very impressive, and it is one hell of a flex to start off a song like this. The song quickly transitions into a verse full of piercing screams that are layered behind Matt’s singing voice. These screams are really high, and I am not quite sure if I dig them or not. Regardless the experimentation here is interesting. This song actually has quite a bit of vocal experimentation going on. Around the 3:20 mark, Matt shows off some impressive low growls, which the vocalist does not utilize much within this album.

The chorus is pretty catchy, but there are catchier songs on the record. I wouldn’t call this track filler by any means, but by track nine it doesn’t quite stand out in the mix. Thankfully though the masterful instrumentation throughout the song, the catchy chorus, and the deep growls keep me from skipping this track. I am thankful for this because I prefer not to skip any tracks within a concept album, and Trivium managed to keep me hooked throughout the whole record. Now, does the band continue this trend? Are there absolutely no duds to be found on this album? Let’s jump on into the final track from the epic “In The Court Of The Dragon”.

The Phalanx

I love when an album – this goes double for a concept album – has a true conclusion. Fortunately, “The Phalanx” screams “conclusion”. This epic “Shogun” demo contains all the heroic sounds necessary to end a medieval epic such as “In The Court Of The Dragon”. I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole album was created with this track as the main inspiration. The history of this track goes back to 2008 (and maybe even earlier), so it is no wonder that fans immediately recognized the roots of the track. If this track is potentially the oldest track to begin production, it is possible that the seven minute 13 second track spawned the whole mythology of the record.

Fortunately, “The Phalanx” lives up to its history and more. The track is absolutely monumental. Right off the bat the song begins with a threatening riff that leads into a catchier riff that guides the listener through the track. Matt shows off his impressive singing voice as well as menacing growls throughout the verse. This duality makes the track sound much more dynamic than some of the other more straightforward tracks on the record. The chorus deserves some recognition here too, as I love what they did with it. It sounds exactly what the conclusion of an album should. Trivium only add to this feeling of closure by the end of the track. More on that soon.

The Phalanx Is An Epic Conclusion To A Legendary Tale

The track features a fantastic breakdown and solo featuring some deep growls from Matt that scream out a sense of urgency. It sets the “final battle” type tone that the final track on a heavy album like this needs. The whole entirety of “In The Court Of The Dragon” has led to this finale, and Trivium make sure it was all 100% worthwhile. The fantastic chorus – that I previously mentioned – comes back in dramatic nature and sung in a new dramatic rendition that truly brings closure to one hell of an epic record.

The legendary tale of “In The Court Of The Dragon” may be over, but this thrashy and progressive metalcore epic is worth rehearing over and over again.

Closing Thoughts:

Trivium are the band that just keep on giving. Only one year ago fans were blessed with their heavy record “What The Dead Men Say”, and now the band have released a medieval epic of an entirely different tone. The work ethic of the band is as inspiring as the music they make themselves, and “In The Court Of The Dragon” is a huge testament to the band’s capabilities. This cohesive work not only flows in terms of storytelling and style, but also in sound. The record begins as epic and triumphant as it begins, and rarely does it lose momentum. I think I officially consider myself a huge Trivium fan, and I anticipate what they throw at us next. Knowing this hardworking band, we won’t even have to wait that long for their next metalcore epic.

Final Verdict: 10/10 Shells

In The Court Of The Dragon CD And MP3 Download

If you enjoy physical albums as much as I do, follow the link below and pick yourself up a copy of In The Court Of The Dragon! Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. However, I will never recommend a product or service I don’t have 100% faith in. Additionally, you can find a link to the MP3 purchase if you prefer to support music that way. Happy listening!

Need More Metalcore In Your Life?

Need more metalcore in your life? I recommend you check out my Bullet For My Valentine self-titled track-by-track album review. The fellow classic metalcore alumni recently released their return-to-form album. The band showcase a sound reminiscent of their early sound, and the record contains some of the best tracks of their career. In the article, I breakdown each and every track from the band’s exhilarating new record in-depth. So check that out down below if you’re interested!

Additionally, I recommend you check out my Wage War Manic Track-By-Track album review. Wage War also had a great return-to-form record, and it is easily one of my favorite metalcore albums of 2021. In the article, I breakdown each and every track from the band’s heavy new record in-depth. So check that out down below if you’re interested!

Looking for more music like Trivium? Look no further than our official modern metal playlist. The Spotify playlist features several of the latest tracks by the band, as well as other highly recommended modern bangers! Check it out down below and be sure to follow the playlist if you like what you hear. I update it weekly, so you won’t miss a thing!

What did you think of my Trivium In The Court Of The Dragon review? Did you enjoy the new album? Please share your thoughts down in the comments.