The band released a few career highlights albums (Noble Savage, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell Part I, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell Part II and Invictus). In recent years, they have enriched their sound with elements of musical theatre, progressive and symphonic metal, developing and writing projects such as the Metal Opera "The House of Atreus" (based on Oresteia and the Greek myth related to the Atreides) in 1999/2000 and the soundtrack for an imaginary movie Visions of Eden (A Barbaric Romantic Movie of the Mind) aka "The Lilith Project" (based on the Sumerian legend of Lilith) in 2006.
Virgin Steele play what they call symphonic, romantic and bombastic music with many elements taken from classical music and fantasy/mythological lyrics based on real life events. David DeFeis (all vocals, keyboards, orchestration, synth bass, swords and effects) about Virgin Steele's music: "From a whisper to a scream, barbaric, romantic, bombastic, yet subtle, grandiose, yet earthy. A call, a shout, an invocation to Freedom and the continual awakening to the awareness that every moment of life is lived to its fullest potential. It is a force, a sacred quest which drives Virgin Steele on".
Typically, during Virgin Steele's concerts a sword is burnt on stage. In some special show they used to play a truly long live set called "Three hour extravaganza". Fans consider "The Burning of Rome (Cry for Pompeii)" and "Emalaith" some of the most representative songs of the band.
Many Virgin Steele songs are mythological, often dealing with subjects from Greek and Christian mythology. Most of their albums are concept albums. The later albums tend to be more epic and mythological while, on the early albums (up until Life Among the Ruins), many songs are more real-life based stories of love and sex. According to David DeFeis, all the lyrics he writes are based on real life in some form or another.
A metal opera is a mix between rock opera, Broadway style and "heavy metal adapted for theater actors' live performances". According to German artists Walter Weyers and Martina Krawulsky, with the name "Klytaimnestra": "The House of Atreus", metal opera (musically available on the Virgin Steele's albums The House of Atreus Act I, The House of Atreus Act II) was performed on stage in Germany theaters by Landestheater Production. The result, very different from a heavy metal concert, is a metal based dark Broadway style musical really powerful and energetic with actors only. The premiere of "Klytaimnestra" in Memmingen, the 5th June 1999, has been the first ever regular musical theatre show based on heavy metal concepts. After "Klytaimnestra"s success, David DeFeis & Landestheater Production extracted a second metal opera musical, named "The Rebels", from the previous Marriage of Heaven and Hell trilogy ("The Marriage of Heaven and Hell Part I", "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell Part II", "Invictus").