27.9.12

Tommy Vitaly - Hanging Rock 2012

If you can make dream, that you are a guitarist of a metal band, preferable power metal... You are thinking about your next solo album, so what to do next? Hire the best singers on the planet to sing for you of course! Tommy Vitaly is the guitarist we are talking about, the Italian power metal shredder to be precise. He is/was in a band called Seven Gates. Forget the band for a while, earlier in 2012, Tommy released his ambitious Avantasian solo project. As can be seen from the singers listed below, some of best Avantasia-like singers are recruit just to scream out loud his notes. For accompaniment musician, Tommy simple hire Vision Divine bassist, Andrea Torricini and session drummer Kenny E.Edward aka. Rhino from various band of fame. This formation produced a second solo album for Tommy called Hanging Rock. The material is surprisingly wonderful. Some of '80 speedmetal / NWOBHM style, some neo classical shred and heavy metal in your door front.

Mats Leven suddenly transformed into '80 speed metaller ala Judas Priest with an opener song, Betrayer. Guitar riff are patent '80s style. Indeed, the sound is truly faithful to the original sound that will make you alert immediately about this album. The best track on the album, I think is no.2 Run with the Devil. A little pun to Stryper's To Hell with the Devil, actually the song very much spirit also in '80 heavy metal. Singer Carsten 'Lizard' Schulz are in service for this and his voice are absolutely brilliant for this song. And if you just don't remember, this is a guitarist solo album. Shredding parts and solos taking front view are expected. Come to Hands of Time we have Todd La Torre scream the high and low tunes for us. Also a very strong speed/heavy metal track that is, until Forever Lost. David Defeis of Virgin Steele contributed his magic voice in this acoustic ballad. One thing is Tommy has cleverly mixed each song to his singer, so a song like Forever Lost actually also very Virgin Steele in nature. Tommy also invited guitarist, Concerto Moon, Japanese neo classical guitarist, Norifumi Shima is duel with key-wiz Ferdy Doernberg in song Idol. Michele Luppi is serving this track and of course a catchy power metal plaftform was in the performed. Tommy also composed two instrumental track in the virtuoso style, Misanthropy and Hanging Rock. Then we still have surprises in Heavy Metal God where master David Shankle teach us who the king of Metal. Icewarrior then close this album with another power metal bang with Zak Stevens on the microphone.

Sure Tommy Vitaly is best disciples of Yngwie Malmsteen guitarship. He also has a good song composition that a fortune for us, being served by world class singer. This album simply mixed well recorded metal songs with good balance between song part and intended guitar parts, because this is simple a guitarist solo project. Andrea Torricini are busy with his bass line that listenable in each song, same thing to Rhino in his beat counting parts. The only miss is how short length the album is, only runs at 39 minutes because all the songs average at four minutes. This left us hope that Tommy will still got many ideas worth the wait for his next release.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Tommy Vitaly - Hanging Rock 2012
buy it here at Amazon

1.Betrayer (feat. Mats Leven on vocals)
2.Run with the Devil (feat. Carsten “Lizard"Schulz on vocals)
3.Hands of Time (feat. Todd LaTorre on vocals)
4.Forever Lost (feat. David Defeis on vocals)
5.Idol (feat. Michele Luppi on vocals, Norifumi Shima and Ferdy Doernberg solos)
6.Misanthropy
7.Heavy Metal God (feat. Carsten “Lizard” Schulz on vocals, David Shankle guitar solo)
8.Hanging Rock (feat. Ferdy Doernberg keyboard solos)
9.Icewarrior (feat. Zak Stevens on vocals)

Andrea Torricini Bass
Tommaso Vitali Guitars, Keyboards 
Rhino Drums

•Tommy Vitaly (SEVEN GATES) - Guitars
•Todd LaTorre (CRIMSON GLORY) - Vocals
•David DeFeis (VIRGIN STEELE) - Vocals
•Zak Stevens (CIRCLE II CIRCLE, ex-SAVATAGE) - Vocals
•Michele Luppi (THAUROROD, ex-VISION DIVINE) - Vocals
•Carsten Lizard-Schulz (EVIDENCE ONE, ex-DOMAIN) - Vocals
•Andrea "Tower" Torricini (ex-VISION DIVINE) - Bass
•Norifumi Shima (CONCERTO MOON) - Guitars
•David Shankle (DSG, ex-MANOWAR) - Guitars
•Ferdy Doernberg (Axel Rudi Pell, Rough Silk, Helloween) - Keyboards
•Kenny Earl Edwards (a.k.a. Rhino; HOLY HELL, ex-MANOWAR) - Drums

26.9.12

Kerion - Cloudriders Part 1 Road to the Skycity (2012)

Kerion is a power / symphonic metal band hailed from France, female fronted and already recorded two albums previously. This new album called CloudRiders Part 1 Road to the Skycity is their latest endeavor. This maybe didn't ring much bell, although the title is interesting new kind of story line. However, take a look in details you will soon realized something fishy, and big fish inside the package. Let me give you a quick run through  in album :

1. Phil Giordana from Symphonic Epic band Fairyland . Phil is leading the 40 members choir , Rimiez Choir in this album. So expect a massive Fairyland, Rhapsody of Fire level of chorus.

2. Two guest vocalist (+1 with Phil Giordana) CARAVELLUS' Raphael Dantas and SILENT FALL's vocalist Adrien Eyraud.

3. The metal crossing breeding are: 
- Symphonic metal as in Rhapsody of Fire, Fairyland
- Folk metal as in Ensiferum, and something Angra percussion
- Female voice as in Epica
- Power Metal as in Stratovarius
- a technical progressive metal as in Symphony X

4. Producer is Will Lievin guitarist/drummer of HAMKA. 

5. Visual design of artwork is nonetheless by Genzo (World Of Warcraft), see something familiar? He also created characters and scenes of the story.

With such interesting element, we welcome to the first Rider's theme and intro. It is somewhat a little "too generic", something flying high aeroplane RPG theme, with anticipated chorus as the main theme. Be patient because the following up song, The Map come in quickly, started with melodic flute intro, we come to the combination between power folk metal with  characteristic female leading voices. The existence of power chorus are there as well improvisation over the thematic melody in the solos part. Everlasting Flight is very Rhapsody of Fire "telling the story" song.  Bounty Hunter is another interesting song, rather dark, heavy  and more technically difficult piece with progressive metal elements. The Sky is My Ocean is ballad epic showing the singer Flora Spinelli clean and soft voices. The fill in solos is violin in duet with electric guitars. A slow track repeated again only in Celticia's Song, this time the accompanying is with piano. Many of the songs are based on duet between singer Flora with guests, the best maybe in a song Fireblast. And if looking for something vernacular, with many folk elements, it is in an awesome song called Tribal Vibes. The album then close with The Fall of Skycity epic. Eight minutes long as usual, this is the finale of the concept story. Leading chorus and lyric, "... children of the sky..." is memorable and despite being long we can enjoy every bites of second in this composition.

Overall there is more to dig in this Kerion's Cloudriders Road to the Skycity album. The project did not wasted many guests as it is turns out an excellent concept album. Member of Kerion did handled all the technical musicianship required to make this also an enjoyable progressive metal album. Do not missed this one!

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Kerion - Cloudriders Part 1: Road to the Skycity

01.Rider’s Theme (Intro) 02:51
02. The Map 04:45
03. Everlasting Flight 04:27
04. Bounty Hunter 06:24
05. The Sky Is My Ocean 04:26
06. Fireblast 05:49
07. Tribal Vibes 06:41
08. Never More 05:00
09. Celticia’s Song 04:44
10. Ghost Society 06:50
11. The Fall Of Skycity Pt. 1 01:38
12. The Fall Of Skycity Pt. 2 08:13
13. Rider’s Theme (Outro) 01:23

Flora Spinelli - Vocals
Rémi Carrairou - Lead & Rhythm Guitars
Sylvain Cohen - Rhythm Guitars
Stéphane Papasergio - Bass
JB - Drums

A Warcraft style of Fantasy art on the cover album

24.9.12

Neal Morse - Momentum 2012

Usually Neal Morse alone is enough to kill the time with some awesome prog music. This month, Neal Morse team up (again) with Mike Portnoy and recorded newest progressive material called Momentum. While Mike Portnoy already coming out with two big projects this year, Adrenaline Mob and Flying Colour (and a jam tour with Derek Sherinian, Billy Shehan and Tony MacAlpine) , this album with Neal Morse is perhaps the closest album in the same spirit of Liquid Tension Experiments. Serving bassist is Randy George. Also please welcome Paul Gilbert and fresh blood Adson Sodre in guitars department. This album is something Neal Morse heaviest I ever heard, the spirit is all there, different with the previous album "Testimony 2" that a rather technical works.

The ball is set high as soon as Momentum in play. Neal's keyboard licks started accompanied with Portnoy's  signature tom-tom fill. Vocal is still there with Neal Morse signature harmony chorus. The songs is uplifting, something Ayreon met Dream Theater. Of course high level musicianship is the main menu here. Thoughts Part 5 is very complexes composition. A use of orchestration effect, multi odd tempo and awesome singing layering is why Neal Morse the top dog of progressive head nowday. Smoke and Mirrors suddenly ease down, the main point here is the nice song writing in ballad form. Time to enjoy how minimalist Neal Morse's vocal and basic acoustic guitar still can do. Weathering Sky is built upon thematic licks with element of funk inside. Freak is again different feel, lighter and happier mood, Neal Morse cleverly put five different style of song to "prelude" the "epic" last composition, World Without End. Listen to the slow introduction built up, this is superb epic progressive metal act. The main first "movement" is instrumental focus on Neal Morse shredding keyboard and guitar solos. The lengthy 33 minutes composition is the same height as Dream Theater Six Degree ... era song, that Mike Portnoy maybe missed this lately years.

This is yet masterpiece recording by Neal Morse. He seems conquered yet another Everest of music since this is something his most "metal" recording. Mike Portnoy is keep burning other drummer's kitchen by close the deal to be Neal Morse drummer. Bassist Randy George cold handed down all Neal's keyboard notes, not to meantioned Portnoy changing groove. Paul Gilbert enjoy his high time in throw in high level progressive jam. Adson Sodre is the rising star of the band here, we going to heard from him again soon. What differences Momentum with other progressive metal material is Neal Morse self voice, is still faithful in hard rock style. Lyrically, Neal Morse is always in Christian faith contents as so do this album. Get the latest progressive rock and metal master recording in Momentum now.

Metalharem class: ********* nine stars out of ten

Neal Morse - Momentum 2012
buy it here at Amazon

1. Momentum (6:25)
2. Thoughts Part 5 (7:51)
3. Smoke and Mirrors (4:38)
4. Weathering Sky (4:15)
5. Freak (4:29)
6. World Without End (33:39)

Neal Morse - vocals, guitars, keyboards
Randy George - bass
Mike Portnoy - drums
Adson Sodre - guitar
Paul Gilbert - guitar

23.9.12

Dokken - Broken Bones 2012

One of best attraction in melodic rock of the eighties was Dokken. Surely the band didn't survive much of the nineties grunge / alternative invasion, in 1998 Don the leader dismissed the band but then resurrected them again as fast as in four years later, 2002. Since then the band enjoy the "modern" era, where members are well aware of Dokken history and only interest to maintained the legacy as long as possible, no George Lynch but. I was re-following them since the 2008 album, "Lightning Strikes Again". It was a modest self re-inventing album, and so this upcoming sequel of the 2012's "Broken Bones". To remind again, Jon Levin and Barry Sparks are the guys in the shoe of George Lynch and Jeff Pilson. Both are equivalent to them and actually doing their own great within these years with Don.

For many fans, Dokken was actually more hard rock / blues metal style, so when Empire strikes the first notes on the album in heavy metal riff, we all straightened rabbit ear to follow. Do justice to the track, it is a great opener and easy heavy metal snack for everyone. Broken Bones as the second song, is thick in blues and hard rock style. For the rest of album, guitar licks and solos are flowing very natural along the singing. Victim of the Crime in the middle is another quick recommendation, it is an interesting open string "Kashmirian" licks combined with overall minor-ish feel. Come to Burning Tears is following 80s acoustic ballad, nice for those missed the nostalgic love ballad. And not stop there, Today is also in the same vibe. Fade Away is also recommended, something like Firehouse and in simple minor chord progression.

We are pleased to welcome this latest Dokken's hard work. Songs are mostly "mature" and emphasized on the song writing. Don's vocal is still point of interest in each song. The bulky of melancholic songs give a perfect medium for his voices. His 'sad' voices actually easily sink and when heard again after years, give a great nostalgic values. Guitarist Jon Levin play a solid rule as Dokken's guitarist, no flaws in each soloing and accompanying power chord. Same to the other quartet, bassist Barry (some sources are citing Sean McNabb) and drummer Mick Brown are in equal great contribution to the album. Fans of melodic hard rock is need to examine Dokken Broken Bones.

Metalharem class: ******* seven stars out of ten

Dokken Broken Bones 2012
buy it here at Amazon

1."Empire" 3:33
2."Broken Bones" 4:54
3."Best of Me" 4:18
4."Blind"  3:23
5."Waterfall"   2:48
6."Victim of the Crime" 4:30
7."Burning Tears"  4:41
8."Today"  4:20
9."For the Last Time"   3:58
10."Fade Away" 3:46
11."Tonight"  4:57

Band Members
•"Wild" Mick Brown - Drums & Backing Vocals
•Don Dokken - Lead Vocals
•Jon Levin - Lead / Rhythm Guitars
•Barry Sparks - Bass Guitar

22.9.12

Chris Bickley Tapestry of Souls 2012

A rather unknown guitarist for me, Chris Bickley is soloist from Connecticut area. His fluency in guitar landed him lucks in that area, having played with bigger artist such as Terri Lane. Lately the internet promotion of his solo album, Tapestry of Souls emerged pretty well. Picked up the disc and the overall impression is positive. The album contains mostly hard rock influence shredding guitar tracks. For those who seeking new guitar virtuoso Chris Bickley is a name for you to follow right now.

One thing is, the album supported by many guest artist. And judge simply from the music produced, the supporting musicians is doing their job well. The opening song Race Car Guy maybe a modest opening, listen to the Scorpions-era licks and melody here, not to mentioned highly performed bassist and drummer in support. See the track list below for the supporting musicians in each tracks. The album also contained four vocalize tracks, we listen to the first one in track two, This Time It's Gonna Hurt. The singer is Jimmy Kunes of Cactus. The track is simply the most appealing hard rock song in the album, the vocal is so mouthwatering that I feel they really should do more track on this chemistry. Fallen is a melancholy minor scale in the vibes of blues rock. We then listen to second vocal song, Crying Shame. This time Kelly Keeling the singer give something Kurt Cobain-like character. Crying Shame is in modern rock mood. The fifth track is instrumental with very thick funky bass line called All Or Nothing and it supported by three other guitarist, nevertheless this is a nice jam between Chris and his guests. Bass is by master bassist Dino Fiorenza. Another vocal tracks is Lead You Astray with singer Chandler Mogel, something like new Gn'R song combined with funk rock of RHCP. Don't miss the title song Tapestry of Souls, a simple semi acoustic instrumental beautify with piano in mellow tempo. After that a brass duet (horn) in instrumental Walk In The Park. Finally big names Mike Vescera is the final guest in song A Step Behind. Of course he better sing something neo classical tunes, with thick harmonic minor song. Truly enjoyable as the last waiting song.

Again this is a gem from a rather unknown artist. Chris Bickley is doing big here, the multi musician supporting are one of main success key here. The supporting bassist all give the music a nice tapestry. The drum is especially nice in sound, most are mixed with nice snare sound that mixed well with Chris rather old amp sounding guitar tones. Chris Bickley deserve the higher publication for this works. In a quick research, Chris actually team up with bassist Dino Fiorenza and formed a band called "Intuition" and to be released album in late 2012. A truly enjoyable instrumental rock guitar album from the new rising star.

Metalharem class: ******* eight stars out of ten

Chris Bickley Tapestry of Souls 2012
buy it here @ Amazon

01. Race Car Guy
bass: Eric Klaastad, drum: BJ Zampa

02. This Time It's Gonna Hurt
vocals: Jimmy Kunes, bass:Michael K. Smith, drum: Bobby T Torello

03. Fallen
Bass: Scott Spray drum: Bobby T Torello, keyboard: Vic Steffens

04. Crying Shame
Vocals: Kelly Keeling, bass:Rick Gauthier, drum: Paul Pedroncelli

05. All Or Nothing
Guitars:Vick LeCar,Tom ‘The Suit’ Forst, John Bruno, bass:Dino Fiorenza, drum: Gaetano Nicolosi

06. Chemical Love
Bass: Michael K. Smith, drum: Gaetano Nicolosi

07. Lead You Astray
Vocals: Chandler Mogel, Bass: Rick Gauthier, drum: Paul Pedroncelli

08. Tapestry Of Souls
bass: Alex Pierce, drum: Gaetano Nicolosi

09. Walk In The Park
bass: Chris McCarvill, drum: Gaetano Nicolosi, horns : Bill Holloman

10. A Step Behind
Vocals: Mike Vescara, bass:Michael K. Smith, drum:Michael Giammattei

11. Old No. 9
bass: Dominick Mauro, drum & keyboard: Vic Steffens

Chris Bickley – all guitars
Producer: Vic Steffens
Kelly Keeling: TSO, John Norum, MSG, George Lynch
Chanderl Mogel: Outloud, Talon, Vitalij Kuprij
Mike Vescera: Yngwie Malmsteen, Roland Grapow
Jimmy Kunes: Cactus, Savoy Brown
Bobby T Torello: Johny Winter, Thunderhead
Bj Zampa: House of Lords
Dino Fiorenza: Steve Vai, Paul Gilbert Europe Tour. Marco Sfogli



21.9.12

Steve Harris - British Lion (2012)

Months ago Steve Harris of metal's greatest band on Earth, Iron Maiden, announced his ever solo album to public. The project titled with a widely published cover art is known as "British Lion". Fans are rejoice to expect something different , according to Steve Harris, something that can not be done with the Maidens-fellow. What Steve didn't warned is the style of the music, which is in total hard rock genre. Simply saying, the album that full streamed yesterday, is true far from what Steve Harris done in Iron Maiden. The questions is, will the album went well into the Iron Maiden fans' tastes?

In the first track, This Is My God, we directly introduced to a thick hardrock feel, a rather alternative rock actually. The whammy bass and guitar is cool. Surely we need to adjust the expectation after a few minutes. Because obviously, this is just Steve Harris having fun together with his childhood dudes. Positively, we know that Steve did not abusive his power and money in hiring ultra technical musicians to form a supergroup. But, instead rely on provided resources along his friend. Richard Taylor taking up the microphone is perhaps the only thing we need to adapt now. Guitars playing are also simple and no solos until far in the middle of the album. Lost Worlds has the powerful bass line, again the song is hardrock with falsetto singing all over. Although produced by world class master, Kevin Shirley (Dream Theater, Rush, Iron Maiden), a rather unusual balancing of bass, vocal and rest of instrument seems notable. Move to Us Against the World, the song actually grow into more interesting progress. Us Against the World actually has that Iron Maiden tune for a second, nice song writing and for a while the vocal of Richard Taylor fit well in this track, plus, the guitars solos are there. The Chosen Ones starts with thick 80s arena intro, a more happier feel for the first time in the album. A World Without Heaven is an ambitious seven minutes epic hard rock with some touch up in the interlude and solos.

Then we have a nice up beat metal song like Judas, except for a not so well interlude break that fell the song almost in a second. Eyes of the Young is really country-hard rock feel of the 80s. And the last track, The Lesson is there to end this album in mixed feeling.

British Lion sure has that wide palettes of music that good in replay value. We completely lost Steve Harris of Iron Maiden here, which can be a positive point. As a fans of IM and Steve, my very humble (and amateur) inputs are, the songs mostly didn't polished to the last best form. Each song provide a very challenging song writing that beg to have a more killer execution, a killer riff and guitar solos, and drumming. The singing is perhaps the biggest thing to struggling here. Imagine a song like The Chosen Ones sings by charismatic Michael Kiske, or Eyes of the Young by... say.. the 80s heroes like Jon Bon Jovi? I might be dreaming day here... But that's how I feel about it. Last thing, if you fans of bass playing, the whole album will give you an happy hour, whether just listening or jam together. Most of songs are very bass-line supremacy. That's British Lion, the cover art is solid rocking though!

Metalharem class: ******* seven stars out of ten

Steve Harris - British Lion (2012)
buy it here @ Amazon

1. "This is my God"   4:57
2. "Lost Worlds"   4:58
3. "Karma Killer"   5:29
4. "Us Against the World"  4:12
5. "The Chosen Ones"   6:27
6. "A World without Heaven"  7:02
7. "Judas"   4:58
8. "Eyes of the Young"  5:25
9. "These are the Hands" 4:28
10. "The Lesson"   4:15
Total length: 52:11

Personnel
Steve Harris - bass
Richard Taylor - lead vocals
David Hawkins - guitar, keyboards
Grahame Leslie - guitar
Simon Dawson - drums
Richard Cook - drums on tracks 1, 3 and 7.
Production
Kevin Shirley - mixing

A solid metal artwork for the cover album:


18.9.12

As I Lay Dying - Awakened 2012

Bahasa Indonesia review available right after the English review - Resensi album Awakened dari As I Lay Dying dalam bahasa Indonesia ada di bawah

Member of American mainstream metal band, As I Lay Dying (AILD) do not let the year 2012 slip away. They join the wagon of other mainstream bands in releasing studio album for the world. As we already received this year, Lamb of God (Resolation) and Shadows Fall (Fire From the Sky) come earlier. All three has something in similarity, playing in the metalcore and groovemetal genre, and all Grammy nominee. As I Lay Dying continued their decade long of career with a release of Awakened as their 6th studio album this September 2012. The band had gone some adjustment in their music direction as happening in The Powerless Rise, to the fans of earlier era, this album can be a relief as AILD return to a more basic metalcore essential. To serve this San Diego based team, is producer Bill Stevenson (drummer of Descendents band).

Come and enjoy Cauterize and A Greater Foundation, the first two tracks from the album. We are presented an high end form of metalcore, with furious vocal lining above an ultra catchy riff and speed drumming. When come to Resilience we get a slow and epic intro before returning to blistering guitar riff mixed with overwhelming screaming. Guitar solos also great up to this point. One of nice point in this album is the ability of the band to convert a minor and epic feel ala power metal into metalcore piece, just with a pause in some cases, as happening in Whispering Silence on track five. Also what important in metalcore is the connection between screaming verses and "melodious" chorus, which is happening nicely in a song like Overcome. And talking about groovy, there is a song like No Lungs to Breathe which is a good play in tempo and groove. What else, the bass orientated track? Then we have Defender, where singer and bassist Josh Gilbert enjoy a front highlight with his dictating bass line. In the end part, left us with two "suspected filler" songs, My Only Home and Tear Out My Eyes, both serving as nice ending tracks to good bye with this solid album.

Awakened come with high expectation from fans, and I think As I Lay Dying done the job quite good in this album. This is a fun listening experience for non metalcore fans like me, with I understand can also meaning as too generic for solid fans of the genre. Guitar solos done briefly in each song but at least they are dominant and important, mostly done in simply blues pentatonic scale. Lyrically, the band stated they were faith devoted members and the lyric inspired mostly with this feature, but they are not "too preachy" and never was I think. And in some cases the lyric even heard as an autocritic to the belief system, as in Defender,

Fighting so hard to be heard 
Yet having nothing to say 
You talk about changing masses 
But forget those close to you 
Most of us have given up 
On these words that all sound the same 
But i am still willing to believe 
If you have done all that you can

 I also like the structurally lyric as in Overcome which connected well with the song. A straight "likes" to this album, come and listen to yourself.

As I Lay Dying dengan album teranyar Awakened, review.

Band mainstream beraliran metalcore, As I Lay Dying tidak melewatkan tahun 2012 tanpa buah tangan buat para penggemar musik cadas. Band asal San Diego ini turun serta meluncurkan album baru Awakened untuk menyemarakkan menyusul beberapa rekan band lain sealiran yang terlebih dahulu turun gunung. Seperti yang sudah di-review sebelumnya (dalam bahasa Inggris), Shadows Fall dan Lamb of God terlebih dahulu merilis album baru di tahun 2012. Ketiga band ini cukup mirip, setidaknya bagi saya, sama-sama berada di teritori metalcore dengan groove-metal yang kental, dan sama-sama sudah ada di arus utama / mainstream, dan sama-sama pesaing dalam memperebutkan Grammy di cabang metal. Melalui album ke-enamnya, Awakened, As I Lay Dying meneruskan karir mereka yang sudah ada sejak tahun 2000. Walaupun sempat mengalami perubahan seperti di album sebelumnya Powerless Rise, tampaknya album Awakened beranjak kembali ke akar metalcore mereka, di mana akan lebih bersahabat dengan fans-fans awal. Untuk memproduksi album ini, drummer Descendent, Bill Stevenson bertugas mengawal di balik papan mixer.

Dua nomer pertama Cauterize dan A Greater Foundation membawa kita ke riff cadas dengan lagu yang dinyanyikan dengan serak dan keras. Intro dari A Greater Foundation yang dimainkan dengan drum tempo stacatto/putus-putus langsung disambung dengan vocal dari Tim Lambesis yang cadas. Resilience masuk dengan rumus standard, melody chordal yang disambung dengan iringan drum bergaya 'pembukaan'.  Wasted Words juga lagu yang tidak banyak basa-basi dan langsung disambar oleh band dengan penuh semangat. Satu point mantap di album ini adalah, AILD bisa menggubah tempo dari metalcore ke gaya power metal hanya dengan pause sejenak, seperti yang dibawakan di lagu Whispering Silence. Di lagu Overcome, koneksi antara verse dan chorus bertaut dengan indah. Lalu di No Lungs to Breathe, adalah permainan groove yang kental dan apik. Sementara di lagu Defender, sang bassist menikmati momentnya memetik bass dengan penuh perhatian. Dua lagu terakhir masih tetap dengan nuansa yang sama, walaupun sedikit lebih umum , namun cocok sebagai tembang penghabisan di album ini. (metalharem.blogspot.com)

Walaupun album Awakened penuh dengan 'tekanan' untuk lebih baik dari penggemar, tapi As I Lay Dying tampaknya berhasil keluar dari kondisi under pressure dan menerbitkan satu lagu piringan berbobot yang bisa bertahan di telinga penggemar. Memang masih ada momen di mana lagu-lagu terlalu 'umum' tapi ini adalah album yang enak untuk dinikmati. Gitaris Nick dan Phil bermain cukup habis-habisan di sini. Lagu yang patutu diperhatikan adalah solo di Defender, di mana drummer Jordan juga cukup kreatif memasukkan beberapa pola yang indah untuk kebutuhan per lagu. Secara lirik, kita tahu As I Lay Dying adalah band yang dekat dengan keyakinan keTuhanan, di mana mempengaruhi lirik yang disajikan. Jika anda membaca review ini di tahun 2013, selamat menikmati penampilan mereka di festival Metal Hammersonic, Ancol Jakarta. (di sadur bebas 2013, metalharem.blogspot.com )

As I Lay Dying - Awakened 2012

01. Cauterize
02. A Greater Foundation
03. Resilience
04. Wasted Words
05. Whispering Silence
06. Overcome
07. No Lungs to Breathe
08. Defender
09. Washed Away
10. My Only Home
11. Tear Out My Eyes

Tim Lambesis– Vocals
Jordan Mancino – Drums
Nick Hipa – Guitar
Phil Sgrosso – Guitar
Josh Gilbert – Bass

an Hellenistic influence artwork? the cover album for As I Lay Dying:

16.9.12

Vision Divine - Destination Set To Nowhere (2012)

As a fans of power metal I admit Vision Divine is one of my visionary band. When Rhapsody (of Fire) seems “overdone” the genre by being too theatrical, Vision Divine sneak in to take the gap in the “standard” power metal in the late ‘90s. Their first debut in 1998 is still one of my favorite disc, still playing it 'til today , together with Avantasia…oughh yeah. Within the next decade Vision Divine then predictably grew from off side project into full project with dedicated members. Consistently they released album each two years or more. In their more than ten years of career, under Olaf Thorsen ((ex) Labyrinth) the band must be already inspiration for many power metal band from Italy and surrounding. The singer on this 2012 new album, Destination Set To Nowhere is back to Fabio Lione, notes that singer Michele Luppi who take the mic on Fabio’s absence also leave precious moments to the band.

What a bit off shore is prelude track in native language, S’io Fosse Foco, which is a narration but quite slow, giving you a full alert in one and half minutes waiting for the first riff. Then it come The Dream Maker, the keyboard riff and backing guitar riff made it entry to the first power metal track of the album. Although fully supported by double guitarist, (Olaf and Federico, both Labyrinth) the first interlude is courtesy of keyboardist Alessio Lucati, and what trade mark in Vision Divine is their shredding keyboardist on their boat. Beyond the Sun and Far Away is then following up with exact spirit and driven keyboard shower. Then continued again in the third song, The Ark. The album is conceptual outer space theme. A rather break of the pattern is track Mermaids from Their Moons, do not fooled with a mellow opening verse, the song serves well as the best in the album with many technically speed required solos and riff. By this point I will recommended Message to Home, a ballad with nice orchestration and thematic guitar licks. Then Here We Die , maybe the only “standard” guitar riff intro song in the album and finale Destination Set to Nowhere.

So once again the band successfully built an awesome power metal album on a “cliché” outer space theme. By the time you get the album you will also notice a second disc full of Vision Divine “best” tracks. This is really the compilation about A-Z of the band, and actually for the genre (unfortunately my favorite Black Mask of Fear not included). The voice of Fabio Lione remind me to the first Vision Divine debut and I think this album more straight forward and close the their origin, then say, the album prior “9 Degress…”. A full team of five instrumentalist forge the album into higher than acceptable standard of power metal. Along with many similar band releasing good thing this year, listen to this album to get the complete experiences of it.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Vision Divine – Destination Set to Nowhere 2012
Buy it here @ Amazon

01. S'io Fosse Foco
02. The Dream Maker
03. Beyond the Sun and Far Away
04. The Ark
05. Mermaids from Their Moons
06. The Lighthouse
07. Message to Home
08. The House of the Angels
09. The Sin Is You
10. Here We Die
11. Destination Set to Nowhere

CD2 (re-Recorded Best Of):
01. New Eden
02. Vision Divine
03. Send Me An Angel
04. Taste Of A Goodbye
05. The Fallen Feather
06. La Vita Fugge
07. The Perfect Machine
08. God Is Dead
09. The 25th Hour
10. Voices
11. Gutter Ballet (Savatage cover)

Fabio Lione - Vocals
Olaf Thorsen - Guitars
Federico Puleri - Guitars
Alessio Lucatti - Keyboards
Andrea "Tower" Torricini - Bass
Alessandro Bissa - Drums

An outer space artwork for cover album

15.9.12

Elvenking - Era (2012)

By homeland Italy, Elvenking is seem to be destined a power metal band. Put in additional violinist Elvenking become an awesome combination between power metal and folk metal. Already exist since 1997, the 7th album called "Era" was released September 2012. What you need is to expect a melodic folk tune along with power metal feel all along the album.

Start with a single and first video music of the album, The Loser. This is thundering drum + fiddle folk melodious riff combined with killer guitar riff. What to expect except jump into the joy of absolutely villager power metal. The singer Davide Moras is an interesting voice in this style, he is much more heavy metal feel, something that need to adapt for the rest of the album. Guitar solos built up nicely from the thematic violin melody. I Am The Monster is standard folk metal rhythm, in the middle, the interlude is very thick using all catchy folk odd meter. Midnight Skies, Winter Sighs use a more melancholy intro with only vocal, flute and acoustic guitar, then the power metal riff come, it's very in a classic way. A Song For The People is expected acoustic folk tune, bring the atmosphere back to the village and jungle.

Then quickly to follow up is We, Animals. The song opened with a well composed intro, a play in synth loop, guitar melody and folk groove drumming. As in most of song, the violin interlude done well in this song. The fast song keep going on until Forget-Me-Not , that a rather simple ballad, in rather pop style. There are several voice mixed that end very nice and keep up with the mood. There still strong moment to point up in the later part of the album, Poor Little Baroness is last of that epic power metal moments. Elvenking then dedicated several tracks for more acoustic feel of folk songs. Then end the sixty minutes of this album.

In this album, Elvenking show how easy to blend folk instrument alike violin into powerful metal. Not forget to mentioned a collide between male and female vocal, done by Netta Dahlberg in some of the songs. The power metal still take the core feel, but the folk metal dominated the theme melody, chorus and accentuation interlude with many odd meters. Drummer Symohn is need to credit for bring in all style of beat into powerful metal bank. Combination of duo guitarist and violinist is strong point in this album. If you looking for something "Stradivarius" metal come to hear what Elvenking done in this album.

Metalharem class: ******** eight points out of ten

Elvenking - Era (2012)
buy it here @ Amazon

01. The Loser
02. I Am The Monster [feat. Jon Oliva]
03. Midnight Skies, Winter Sighs
04. A Song For The People
05. Animals
06. Through Wolf's Eyes
07. Walking Dead
08. Forget-Me-Not
09. Poor Little Baroness
10. The Time Of Your Life
11. Chronicle Of A Frozen Era
12. Ophale
13. Khanjar [Limited edition bonus]
14. Grey Inside [Digipack edition bonus]
15. I Am The Monster [Damna's vocals only] [Digipack edition bonus]

Line-up
Davide "Damnagoras" Moras - vocals
Aydan - guitars
Raffaello "Rafahel" Indri - guitars
Jakob - bass
Symohn - drums
Fabio "Lethien" Polo - violin

Cover artwork with mysterious tone color and concept.

10.9.12

Razorwyre - Another Dimension (2012)

If you looking for a band with a bite of thrash metal and NWOBHM come listen to Razorwyre. The band homeland in New Zealand , but feel like predecessor of Iron Maiden blend with Metal Church kind of metal. Interestingly, the band prior name themselves as “Gaywyre”, uh oh and the first studio EP called… eergh, “Coming Out”. The respond to the EP was good and management decide to re-baptized them with a new name, fantastic name indeed, Razorwyre.

Come to listen the first track, The Conjuror (Shaman’s Wrath). The title subconsciously connected with Megadeth, and the riff and blitzing guitar actually has bite of Mustaine. The vocal singing was pure 80s spirit. It is an opening track act perfectly in a debut album. It is total mixed between early thrash scene and Iron Maiden, especially the wooh ooh in the ending of the song. Knight of Fire is a must have heavy metal theme song. Speed metal also a good term to describe this song. The riff with Mustaine’s Kill Em All style remind us well to the golden years. Fight or Be Fucked , yeah remember the band’s history? This is the third best song in a row, now with much more British sound, even bits of Blackmore and all its pentatonic solos. Nightblade is again something Iron Maiden Number of the Beast atmosphere. Another Dimension of Hell is finally something more about themselves and original, or at least I can’t find something obvious to referred.

The middle part now interlude by instrumental The Infinite, an very 80s NWOBHM scale and sounds. Of this later tracks of all heavy and thrash song, Wind Caller is recommended, it is more “something” than a generic thrash riff song.

Razorwyre sure able to gain many fans from both side of thrash, speed metal and NWOBHM. The sound mixing are greatly engineered with sound respectively referred to early 80s frequency. The singer Z.Chylde is wonderful, very Metal Church style and he sing something almost quartet pitch out of tune, but it is required to be like that. Guitarist and founding member Chris Calavrias and James Murray shred the album well with all tricks from the oldies to modern technique. Bassist and drummer played their parts with great reference to Iron Maiden and early Metallica. The album released on September 15, 2012, grab and air guitar-ed that.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Razorwyre Another Dimension 2012
buy it here

1. The Conjuror (Shaman's Wrath) 3:41
2. Knights of Fire 3:23
3. Fight or Be Fucked 6:26
4. Nightblade 4:42
5. Another Dimension of Hell 5:03
6. The Infinite 1:24
7. Desert Inferno 5:22
8. The Fort 4:44
9. Speed Warrior 4:15
10. Wind Caller 3:49
11. Hangman's Noose 3:37

Chris Calavrias- Lead Guitars
James Murray- Rhythm Guitars
Nick - Drums
Diamond Tim - Bass
Z Chylde – Vocals

Album cover with great reddish color tones:


5.9.12

Grave Digger - Clash Of The Gods 2012

Surprisingly, Grave Digger is a long servicing heavy metal band, already existed since 1983. Now singer and founder Chris Boltendahl is running the band again and released their 2012 album titled Clash of the Gods. Characteristic by the vocalist unique voice, Grave Digger easily distinguished among other homeland Germany heavy metal bands. They also hold heavy metal faithful to 1980s era.

An introduce prologue song, Charon  starts the album. Also titled Fahrmann Des Todes, telling the story of Charon, the ferryman of Styx river in the underworld. Charon is also Pluto’s satellite name, if you ever remember Astronomy and Science classroom. This set the situation into Hades mythological storyline. Coming next is God of Terror, telling the introduction of Hades himself. For most of this song and rest of album, guitar are set to fat, high end frequency distortion. For association, Grave Digger sounds like Kreator version of heavy metal. Now after meeting Hades, next is Hell Dog. Telling the situation a step deeper into the underworld. What in the chance legendary goddess of Medussa will miss the party, here the song dedicated to the serpent’s goddess. Songs are set from slow intro then developed to faster tempo. Then a calm Mediterranean scale intro begin the song Clash of the Gods. A classic 80s heavy metal tunes, similar to Metal Church, Anvil, Annihilator in their classic years. If you only want to enjoy the signature riff of heavy metal, tune in Death Angel & The Grave Digger and Walls Of Sorrow in the next tracks. Call of the Sirens at least a variation track, come with more deep composition and presented in ballad form. Warriors Revenge return the faster tempo with staccato riffing and powerful drumming. Home At Last and we present the last piece of story coming with another patented guitar riff intro.

Pretty solid as all songs never really loose the attention of my listening. Chorus and song writing related well. Storyline with Hades and Gods background mixed well with Chris’ deep voices. Axeman Axel Ritt definitely knew how to dig basic heavy metal riff into powerful rhythm for each song. I’m not sure if there is keyboards in the album, or perhaps Hans Peter Katzenburg doing a great guitar layered there. Bassist Jens Becker provide high end thumbing bass and Stefan Arnold in drum, answering all required beats for the band. This is fine model album of a heavy metal band with 30 year history.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Grave Digger Clash of the Gods 2012 
Buy it here at Amazon

01.Charon (2:19)
02.God Of Terror (4:19)
03.Hell Dog (4:28)
04.Medusa (5:39)
05.Clash Of The Gods (4:53)
06.Death Angel & The Grave Digger (4:22)
07.Walls Of Sorrow (4:43)
08.Call Of The Sirens (5:30)
09.Warriors Revenge (4:00)
10....With The Wind (0:48)
11. Home At Last (3:57)

Chris Boltendahl - Vocals
Axel Ritt - Guitars
Stefan Arnold - Drums
Jens Becker - Bass
Hans Peter Katzenburg - Keyboards

3.9.12

Joe Stump Revenge of the Shredlord 2012

Thirty years after all those neo classical shreds pioneered by Yngwie Malmsteen, today it is still alive well and have enough room for one or two rounds of spin. Here Joe Stump, an American answer to Yngwie Malmsteen (as it mythically always told) coming with new album full of shred this August 2012. Maybe Joe afraid we will hardly imagine the music, it is titled as Revenge of the Shredlord. This is a more back to basic neo classical album compared to Joe other “revenge” Virtuosic Vendetta album. In Revenge of the Shredlord, Joe simply teach us how to invent new variation over Baroque and neo classical licks.

The Ritual Begins literally when high speed of arpeggios, sweeps and alternate picks begin the revenge process. Not much to gone track by tracks as this is a simple shred, shred and shred album. Two first full track, Man Your Battle Stations and Pistoleros are six minutes works, surprisingly with many variations over a simple arpeggios, harmonic minor and sweeps elements. It seems the licks join one after the another without a pause for thinking. They are well connected and fast. Shredlord’s Sonata is imaginable from the title as it is a neck to neck shredfest. Master Prelude is nylon acoustic to prelude the eight minutes In the Master’s House. This is mellow melancholy composition in the style of neo classical that perfect to accompanied your intimate moments.

The Black Knight’s Castle is pentatonic rock n roll feel to break the icy of neo classical monotonous groove. Enter the Coven will made a perfect power speed metal song, instead it even better as an instrumental. Strat Outa Hell is an accompanied Stratocaster shred pieces. One more round of power metal feel instrumental in White Knuckle Mayhem, The End Approaches is beautiful neo classical and acoustic guitar layered  piece, end this fantastic album.

International acclaim virtuoso and master shredlord Joe Stump is above the cloud. Although most of licks is recycled or we already heard that thousand times, must admit that only few guitarist can come with this high consistency of technical and musical output. If Joe Stump ever thinking to put a vocal in some of his songs (I wish never) he perhaps can break beyond this point. Guitar tunes is classic Fender strat with its twang. Some of the guitar are layered by acoustic guitar. Though not easiest job, but accompanists keyboard, drums and bass only need to enjoy their time playing with the master.  We are hoping this album give a chain reaction to the other neo classical shredlord to take their avenge as well, Yngwie, Michael Angelo Batio, Chris Impelliterri, Francesco Farreri,  to catch up with new album.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Joe Stump Revenge of the Shredlord 2012 
Buy it here at Amazon

1. The Ritual Begins
2. Man Your Battle Stations
3. Pistoleros
4. Shredlord's Sonata
5. Master's Prelude
6. In the Master's House
7. The Black Knight's Castle
8. Enter the Coven
9. Evil Beasts Below
10. Strat Outa Hell
11. White Knuckle Mayhem
12. The End Approaches

Lineup:
Joe Stump - Guitar
Jeff Tortora - Drums
James Francis Simpson - Bass
Joe Codi - Keyboards

Winterstorm Kings Will Fall

Winterstorm is registered name to several bands, so to made clear this is about the young power metal band from Germany. If you ever need a blend between Hammerfall, Blind Guardian, Manowar and Ensiferum here you comes another epic-power-folk metal album. Titled as Kings Will Fall this is Winterstorm second studio release. Apart from the power metal that already repeated many times, this is your pure “We are the stormsons ruling all the ice….” chorus power metal.

The Legend Reborn put a short narration as the album intro. Return To Glory opening didn’t failed to give us clue that we are exactly in the middle of power metal storm. Epic double pedal drumming lead to power choruses, interlude with folk metal elements are put in nicely. The “We are the Stormsons ….. “ choruses continue to flow as upcoming second song. Sail The Unknown Seas come with Viking / Pirates metal theme. In Time We Trusts is Manowar like all tenor choruses accompanying with folk percussion, a nice break in the middle of the album. Then lead to Kings Will Fall that answering with great folk metal with furious riff and sword crossing drumming. Winterstorm also give in high string intro to enjoy a bit in the symphonic metal taste. Up to this point seems like the album already put in very enjoyable songs, as we continue to heavy metal riff intro of Stronger, it is also the same case. Fire of Dreams is minor chorus that remind me to classic 80s Europe song (think “Dreamer). Break The Ice and Dragonriders are two closing song with different feel, the first one is another orchestral ballad then the last song is designated riff to end the album with a bang.

So, another power metal album that all around good. Winterstorm seems put in the compendium of best metal riff in this album. Combination of folk and power metal elements result only in good thing here. Singer Alexander Schirmer take all the songs in wonderful shape. The dual guitars of Michi and Armin give enough shred and flash to the guitar works. If you need a basic all around power metal album with spices of folk metal element, get Kings Will Fall.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Winterstorm Kings Will Fall 2012
Buy it here

01. The Legend Reborn (Intro)
02. Return To Glory
03. The Stormsons
04. Sail The Unknown Seas
05. In Time We Trust
06. Kings Will Fall
07. Into The Light
08. Stronger
09. Fire Of Dreams
10. Break The Ice
11. Dragonriders

Peter Cerveny, Bass (ex-Circle of Grief )
Michi, Guitars (lead), Vocals (backing)
Armin, Guitars (lead), Vocals (backing)
Max, Keyboards
Alexander Schirmer, Vocals
Sebastian "Sebb" Albrecht, Vocals, Drums
(also: ex-Circle of Grief)

2.9.12

Loudness 2・0・1・2 (2012)

Loudness 2・0・1・2 (2012)
Album Review

How many of us have all Loudness studio albums? I mean that must be a lot since , just like any Asian artist, they released new material almost every year, and in some cases twice. It must be a number more than Iron Maiden live albums for least. This year Loudness released their new material in August, and to give us a break, the album titled as 2・0・1・2. Who ever fans of Akira Takasaki and vocalist Minoru Niihara, this new album is something, it is also stronger and original than the previous 2011 release Eve To The Dawn, which is more experimental. In 2012 Loudness happens to backed their references to the golden years in the 80s and 90s.

To many fans, Loudness is almost the worship of Akira Takasaki, guitar lord from the rising sun empire. The first song of 2012 exactly starts with the high hope that this will be guitar driven heavy metal. Catchy riff begin and voice if Minoru Niihara is still the same as in decades ago. Hence,the first song Stronger open the business well. 2012 End of the Age, is album titled song with lots of heavy metal riff and pentatonic licks. In this level of productivity, of course familiar riff unavoidable, riff like in Break New Ground is typical heavy metal. On the rest of song like Driving Force and Behind The Scene the usage of old school heavy metal riff tricks come in handy to keep us excited. The downside is, the other half of the album just seems additional package, up to The Voice of Metal, that is.

For loyal fans of Loudness this should be serves as bonus stuff from the 80s legend. Songs are great in the first part. Guitar works always dominant attractions in each songs. Singer Minoru Niihara is so unique in heavy metal voice. Drummer Masayuki Suzuki is filling the position of legendaries Munetaka Higuchi and bassist Masayoshi Yamashita didn’t just sit there as background but main accompanist to the band. For a band of 30 years history, this one still kicking ass.

Metalharem class: ******* seven stars out of ten

Loudness 2・0・1・2
buy it here a Amazon store

01. The Stronger 04:19
02. 2012~End of the Age 04:59
03. Break New Ground 05:07
04. Driving Force 04:54
05. Behind the Scene 05:31
06. Bang'em Dead 04:07
07. The Voice of Metal 04:12
08. Who the Hell Cares 05:50
09. Spirit from the East 02:17
10. Memento Mori 04:38
11. Out of the Space 01:51
12. Deep-Six The Law (Bonus Track) 06:00

MINORU NIIHARA Vocals
AKIRA TAKASAKI Guitars
MASAYOSHI YAMASHITA Bass
MASAYUKI SUZUKI Drums


1.9.12

Ensiferum Unsung Heroes 2012

The folk metal genre is usually keep simple kind of metal in the field. This left the folks usually a narrow space to develop this catchy genre. Many band only takes flute, sitar and folk melody then cooked them with double metal drum plus power chord. Ensiferum, however, so far is one of the band that successfully raise the genre beyond that simple formula. They bring elements of orchestral parts, folk song, chanting and choruses well composed in their works. They, usually, always a step ahead to the other. The general reading also “labelled” Ensiferum as the Viking Metal variant of folk metal. This month, the quintet from Finland released fourth album titled “Unsung Heroes”. In a what rather connected news, Wintersun also finally released new material to their new album, but let’s leave this alone for now.

As usual, Ensiferum put in a lengthy orchestral intro to track one, Symbols, that actually setup the mood to the folk and epic feel. In My Sword We Trust come in with the first riff we listen. Captivating the whole spirit, the titled corresponded to band name “Ensiferum” or “sword bearer” in Finland. It is a song perfect to call soldier to packing and jump into the battlefield. Rather slow down is track Unsung Heroes, for this Ensiferum choose to play in the “epic” tempo. The moment then saved again by Burning Leaves, in its typical folk intro answered by electric guitar melody the song has enough verse and chorus relationship that memorable and inviting listener to join the singing. The chain of mood break again by totally soft and sweet folk ballad Celestial Bond sing by female member keyboardist Emmi Silvennoinen . In some parts the song bring me to RPG games ala Final Fantasy or Chrono Cross feeling. The backing percussion, flutes and picked string really light up the atmosphere of open space and travel. Retribution Shall Be Mine is fastest track, in addition there is minor element of power metal feeling riff. Celestial Bond actually continued again in part II Star Queen. Slow track with emphasizes to lyric and theme executed by fine song writing. Pohjola is atmospheric Finnish language folk metal track. Then there is a seventeen minutes finale that combined all the elements , orchestral and sopranic voice in the Passion, Proof, Power. Hopefully this will exhaust everyone then forget them to listen the bonus tracks.

The album Unsung Heroes still come with catchy and energetic Viking songs. Only that the chain of mood rather ding dong out by slow ballads in every afterward of fast song. Petri Lindroos voice captured the brave spirit the warriors inside the story. Not forget the chorus that able to give the “crowd” chanting feeling all around for us to join. Then here comes the comparison to the previous album “From Afar”, Ensiferum seems did not managed to tackle their fantastic achievement on that album. Song like Twilight Tavern from album “From Afar” is what really we missed here. Nevertheless, Unsung Heroes give a different dimension, the "mature" dimension. Come abroad now all folk with this new vision.

Metalharem class: ******** eight stars out of ten

Ensiferum Unsung Heroes
buy it here @ Amazon

Disc I
01. Symbols
02. In My Sword I Trust
03. Unsung Heroes
04. Burning Leaves
05. Celestial Bond
06. Retribution Shall Be Mine
07. Star Queen (Celestial Bond Part II)
08. Pohjola
09. Last Breath
10. Passion, Proof, Power
11. Bamboleo [Gipsy Kings cover] [deluxe edition bonus]

Disc II [DVD] [deluxe edition bonus]
+ From Symbols To Passion: The Making Of Unsung Heroes
+ Studio Diary: Week 1-7

Line-up
Petri Lindroos - vocals, guitars
Emmi Silvennoinen - keyboards
Markus Toivonen - guitars, backing vocals
Janne Parviainen - drums
Sami Hinkka - bass

Guest musicians
Laura Dziadulewicz - vocals
Kasper Mårtenson - synthesizer
Vesa-Matti Loiri - speech
Ulla Bürger - soprano vocals
Lassi Lógren - keyed fiddle
Timo Väänänen - kantele
Pasi Puolakka - flute, descant recorder, sopranino recorder
Daniel "Fuchs" Täumel - additional voice
Adrian "Ady" Vogel - additional voice
Volkmar "Volk-Man" Weber - additional voice

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