Seventh Wonder – Tiara Review

CoverYeah, any Tiara review’s opening will use the 8 years time span between Seventh Wonder‘s last record, The Great Escape, 2010, and Tiara. Is it more or less tacky to go meta? Anyway, eight years! That builds expectation. Especially as the Swedes have never disappointed with their albums, putting out prog metal opus one after another. Granted, after the epochal Mercy Falls from 2008, there is little left to be said. The band could have stopped right then and there with one of the greatest prog metal albums of all times in their catalogue. Fortunately for us, we are still getting new stuff, even though at a relatively slower rate than in the ’00s. Part of that is surely singer Tommy Karevik’s engagement in Kamelot, which seems to have left little time for his true home. Let’s shed no tears here though and get instead rejoice that we get another Seventh Wonder record after all with the band in peak form and Tommy exercising the whole range of his prowess. Continue reading “Seventh Wonder – Tiara Review”

Dragony – Masters Of The Multiverse Review

Dragony_MOTM_Cover_fin_weblThere are few genuine classic melodic power metal bands left in the business, with most ancient champions either retiring or “evolving” into something no one asked for. Austria’s Dragony have been supplying the old power metal crowd with finest European forged steel since their inception around 2011, when their first album Legends released independently, a time where I’d known them for a while already and had come to revel in the ’90s symphonic power goodness long before the band was signed by Limb Music in 2012, who released Legends again. Smart move, after all, Legends was the most explosive piece of the genre I’d heard in a long time. Continue reading “Dragony – Masters Of The Multiverse Review”

Dynazty – Firesign Review

38614493_10155362015946504_3741389648413327360_nIn 2016, Dynazty released the best power metal album of the year. Titanic Mass was a massive titan of hit rate, with every song being amazing in its own right. This caught me by surprise as I’d never even heard of the band before. What, me, the power metal mastermind? That’s because Dynazty went through some major changes in their rather short history. Their first release Bring The Thunder in 2009 was deep, deep in sleaze rock/metal revival territory à la Reckless Love or H.E.A.T. The same holds true for the two follow-up records in 2011 and 2012, only with 2014’s Renatus shifting towards the… right direction. Titanic Mass saw the band at the top of their power metal evolution with an extremely modern high-energy sound in the vein of Amaranthe or Borealis. Continue reading “Dynazty – Firesign Review”

Black Majesty – Children Of The Abyss Review

438248Black Majesty have been one of the premier faces, if not the face of Australian power metal since their debut Sands Of Time in 2003. Their first three, characteristically blue-covered albums released through then legendary power metal label Limb Music perfectly suited the spirit of the time: melodic guitar leads, rapid fire riffs and drums and overall high-energy fast-paced tracks put Black Majesty musically much closer to their European power metal siblings than the often much heavier Australian outlets like Dungeon. Continue reading “Black Majesty – Children Of The Abyss Review”

Beyond The Black – Heart Of The Hurricane Review

CoverEver since their debut, Beyond the Black made quite the impact on the symphonic scene, to the point in which they became one of the most attractive line-up additions to the bigger festivals. Having the energy-driven sound of Songs of Love and Death in their arsenal, that wasn’t surprising – the combination of metal with Celtic elements (albeit nothing new in the genre) mixed with Jennifer Haben’s crystal voice, put the record above the overall lacking in quality releases of 2015. Continue reading “Beyond The Black – Heart Of The Hurricane Review”

Mob Rules – Beast Reborn Review

305540Beast Reborn? German heavy metal outfit Mob Rules surely hasn’t been gone long enough to warrant a whole relaunch; as such the new album’s title is more of a reinforcement than a comeback promise. After all, the band’s previous album was released in 2016 and received phenomenally by both press and fans. Rightly so, as Mob Rules evolved and matured their sound greatly over their now 20+ years career. With their first few albums the Germans started out as a rather traditional power metal constellation in the vein of Helloween with melodious guitar leads and heavy keyboard influences. Continue reading “Mob Rules – Beast Reborn Review”

Powerwolf – The Sacrament Of Sin Review

907264Powerwolf return to bring sex to the church of power metal. So much sex! Was I too ignorant or too innocent to see this on their past albums? Sure, tracks like “Resurrection By Erection” from their 2009 masterpiece Bible Of The Beast were very much on the nose, but this time around the Germans conceal their innuendos in smart allegories which will bring the same dirty smirk to your face as the one probably found on this album’s “Stossgebet”‘s priest’s visage. Continue reading “Powerwolf – The Sacrament Of Sin Review”

Cryonic Temple – Deliverance Review

419434I was pretty hyped about Into The Glorious Battle in 2017, after all it was Cryonic Temple‘s first album after an absence of 9 years, and 12 years after their last good album. The Swedish power metal force has been around for a few years in the early ’00s, putting out three immaculate melodic power metal records back to back, ultimately failing in 2008 with a turn towards a modern sound and a change of vocalists. Into The Glorious Battle made this slip undone, featuring a whole lot of classic power metal tracks and the energy we were used to from classics such as 2005’s In Thy Power. In retrospect, the album surely could have been better in parts, and original vocalist Glen Metal’s voice still is sorely missed, but overall it was a way for Cryonic Temple of getting back on track. Continue reading “Cryonic Temple – Deliverance Review”

Derdian – DNA Review

derdian-dnaItaly’s Derdian are one of the few remaining bands of the ’00s European melodic power metal hype which spawned hundreds of bands aiming for an extremely melodic, symphonic and heroic sound in the vein of what Rhapsody started in the late 1990s. While some bands gave the formula a shot of their own ideas and influences, Derdian have been and still are honing the original idea of dramatic, melodic power metal refined by fellow Italians Rhapsody especially during their first three albums. There aren’t many of the initial masters of this style around anymore, with Rhapsody spread across two bands now, both deviating greatly from the band’s original sound, and even Kaledon, another Italian evangelist of heroic power metal, abandoning their trademark sounds for grittier experiments on their latest record. Continue reading “Derdian – DNA Review”

Pellek – Absolute Steel Review

PelleK Absolute SteelPer Fredrik Åsly, better known under his stage/youtube name Pellek, has been around in the world of power metal for quite a few years now, having amassed most of his fame on youtube with metal covers of pop songs, anime openings and his own renditions of metal tracks. His enormous fanbase both allowed and saw him release a bunch of solo albums, starting with Bag Of Tricks in 2012 to this year’s Absolute Steel, the latter crowdfunded and self-produced. With all of this as well as his involvement in several other bands like Damnation AngelsQantice, Dragonforce and ReinxeedPellek has proved his merits and love for power metal and music overall. Continue reading “Pellek – Absolute Steel Review”