Skeletoon – They Never Say Die Review

CoverNerd Power Metal? From Italy? Hell yeah, please. For anyone unsure what nerd power metal sounds like, the nerd part references the band’s lyrics, while the music takes care of the power portion. Some more stuck up stereotyped thinkers would simply pigeon-hole Skeletoon with the usual melodic power metal bands from the ’80s to the ’00s, but that’s half the fun, and as expected from the self-described genre name, fun is what Skeletoon‘s all about. The Italian band is Mr. Tomi Fooler’s brainchild who, as it seems, likes to fuse nerdy, or rather geeky, topics with the speediest European melodic power metal on the block. This particular spawn titled They Never Say Die concerns itself with classic ’80s movie The Goonies. Yeah, no Lord Of The Rings, no Wheel Of TimeSkeletoon prefers it lighthearted. Which obviously suits the classic uptempo power metal the Italians are celebrating with this record.

Just how uptempo are we talking? Look, just think “Eagle Fly Free” and you basically know the whole album. Helloween are clearly a huge influence for Tomi Fooler, throw in some more modern elements from bands influenced by the German power metal pioneers in the ’00s as well and Skeletoon are born. Throw any melodic metal band at Tomi Fooler, and he’ll have a song for you. Skeletoon are not scared to have way too many major key melodies in the vein of happy metal vanguard Freedom Call on their album; this record is something for the die-hard fans of sticky sweet power metal.

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They Never Say Die is part of the Twilight Force wave (I made that up) of melodic/symphonic power metal of recent years, bands who simply don’t care about all the oh so serious progressive avantgarde black post metal fans turning up their noses at lighthearted power metal and instead go all in on reviving the happy power metal experience of the early ’00s. Skeletoon are not looking to please anyone outside of their genre by adding some demanding patterns or progressive constructs and follow a smart recipe this way: better have people love and hate you at the extreme ends of the spectrum than have everyone be kind of meh. Oh, and power metal fans are going to love this. Where HelloweenGamma Ray and Edguy faltered in recent years, Skeletoon pick up the torch and carry it… back to better times. They even remind you of those better times with a cover of Avantasia‘s “Farewell”. Why this song? I have no clue, but they did a great job with it. So, if you want to go back to 2001, this is the album of the year for you. Not to mention epic guest parts by Giacomo Voli, Alessandro Conti and many more. Oh, and even Michael Jackson riffs. You won’t find more fun loving power metal nerds than Skeletoon!

Chris, 02/27/2019

Format reviewed: mp3 160 kBit/s | Dynamic Range Value: 6
Label: Scarlet Records
Links: Facebook | skeletoonband.com
Release date: 03/08/2019

Chris