Essential Albums

About Almora

Almora were born as the symphonic metal project of guitarist Soner Canozer in 2001. A former member of Knight Errant, Canozer was already familiar with the violin in metal music; however, for Almora he chose a more ambitious approach. Blending soprano vocals with violin, flute, yayli tanbur (a Turkish bowed instrument), and piano parts, the band received critical acclaim from the Turkish and international press. Featuring songs written by Canozer, Almora's first release was the Standing Still & Cyrano EP in 2002. With Ahmet Sogutluoglu and Nihan Tahtaisleyen sharing vocal duties (and Tahtaisleyen also playing the violin), the group also included Canozer (guitar, yayli tanbur), Vefa Erdem (bass), Serkan Karabiyik (drums), and Bilge Kocaarslan (flute). The group's debut album followed that same year -- Gates of Time surprised even the bandmembers, as it reached a sales number usually not experienced by Turkish metal acts. Encouraged, Almora released their second album, Kalihora's Song, the following year. Improved musicianship, added orchestration, and more female vocals impressed the fans and media, and also garnered some international attention. However, it was 2004's Shehrazad that made Almora a truly international act. With a high-class production, the orchestration was finally melded with the metal elements. Praised by European metal magazines, the album was also released in Japan, where it made a huge impact. Renowned Japanese musical theater Takarazuka decided to include two of Almora's songs in their musical Revue of Dreams. The album was also included in the Top Five Turkish Rock Albums Containing English Lyrics List prepared by the popular Turkish music magazine Blue Jean. 1945, Almora's fourth studio album, was released in 2006. The album featured Turkish tenor opera singer Hakan Aysev on two songs, and the replacement of lead vocalist Nihan Tahtaisleyen with Nihan Kiziltan. 1945 fulfilled expectations and even surpassed them, putting more weight on the shoulders of leader Canozer. Adored by the local metal magazines, 1945 was also released in Japan and Mexico in the following months. Later that year, the first three Almora albums were also released in Mexico. For Almora's fifth album, Kiziltan left the band and Duygu Sahin took over the microphone. The all-Turkish Kiyamet Senfonisi, released in 2008, guest-starred Ogün Sanlisoy, drummer Arbak Dal, and Burak Kulaksizoglu. The album featured a mellower, folkish style, relying more on the female vocals and symphonic atmosphere. "Tilsim" was released as a single. After Kiyamet Senfonisi, founder Canozer chose to release a solo album with guest vocalists, celebrating his 15th year in music. ~ Vefik Karaege

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