Sometimes there's just a very thin line between art and kitsch, yet there are some innovative bands operating smartly near, but never beyond it. Among those are Italy's Ancient Bards, whom manage that balancing act with ambitious grace. Soulless Child starts where 2010's the Alliance of the Kings left off, 10 songs of pure Symphonic Epic Metal, but this time with a more powerful and symphonic sound; massive choirs, more aggressive guitars, engaged with thundering bass lines and sweeping keyboards and guitar solos, all underlying the beautiful voice of Sara Squadrani. Sophisticated, epic and exciting, Soulless Child is a massive undertaking and is worthy to be packaged in artwork by the renowned Felipe Machado Franco. Dare to enter the land of the Black Crystal Sword! Fans of Nightwish, Rhapsody of Fire, Epica, Delain, and Edenbridge take note.