Until short ago, Italy was a synonym for generic Melodic Speed, but in the past weeks and months bands of other styles are coming out of their hiding, like THUNDERSTORM. When listening to their debut "Sad Symphony", then it's not the typically sterotype influences like HELLOWEEN, LABYRINTH or RHAPSODY coming to your brain, but rather BLACK SABBATH, SOLITUDE AETURNUS or CANDLEMASS.
The short opener "Ascension" shows the direction: epic Doom Metal in tradition of the just mentioned bands. Similar to them, and related acts like the Swedes of SORCERER or MEMORY GARDEN, THUNDERSTORM also use a whole lot more dynamics in their sound, compared to many "classic" Doom-bands, faster, more powerful passages are woven into the doomy skeleton, to loosen up the compositions and make them more interesting, just like with "Dark Knight" and "Time", while with "Sphere Of Mine" BLACK SABBATH is evident as a big influence.
Highlight of "Sad Symphony" undoubtedly is he nine-minute-colossus "The Rite", which contains everything epic Doom has to offer and isn't second to any of the other acts from above.
In THUNDERSTORM all Doom-maniacs have received a new gem, which can keep up with any of the established acts!