Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) is a metal music zine (Seattle region), online and on paper. 160 issues so far.
online pdfs available at www.fuglymaniacs.com
on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MetalBulletinZn
Friday, August 23, 2019
August 16th, 2019
The prospect of listening to an hour-long album may not be too enticing, particularly if the band in question is an unknown factor. Many independent bands these days are making these long albums with the attitude, “Well, we may never make another album again so we might as well make this one a big bang celebration of one and done as we say goodbye to this cruel, cruel world!!!” Sometimes it seems that bands get together and work for years to make an album only to disappear exactly when they are just getting warmed up. Yet, this Connecticut, USA symphonic power metal band claims that they are not a one-and-done deal and that they have more songs in the works.
Whatever doubts and misgivings there are, fans of the subgenre should be convinced by the third listen, if not the second. The effectiveness of the music is such that the music makes sense very quickly. What a relief! Nobody wants to hear an hour of music that drags. Luckily, despite the differing moods and songs, they keep the pedal to the metal and consistently keep up the tempo. Do they want to rock? Yes! The next question is the matter of skill. The rhythm section makes sure to keep the energy up as a style for the band. The keyboards are present and audible in a measured way. The singing, as is often the case in this particular subgenre, is melodic and high in the general style of soprano. There is no screaming nor growling, nor female/male combination; only high melodic singing. The songs feature the big riffs and hooks that fans of this style want. The songs are made with the intention to make you feel good about being a fan of heavy metal music. You like power metal and the band means business in giving it to you. If you want to feel happy, this is a vehicle, a good vehicle, for doing that: power chords, solos, keyboards, fun tempos, and angelic singing. You probably won’t dare to sing along, but feel free to try it anyway when there is no one else around to hear you attempt to sing like a soprano. Do it. Because, why not?! We won’t tell anyone. It will be our secret.
The album is too long for one sitting. While some people do enjoy long albums, the band seems to hope that appreciative fans will take the time to tackle the album over several days. It all depends on how a person listens to music. On the other hand, it could have been a much better business decision to release the music as two albums. It’s easier for consumption, better for the discography, for keeping the band’s name active, for marketing, for the wallet of the band, and for expectations (now every album they make must be super long or risk accusations of “running out of juice” or “not as good as the debut” or some other ridiculous thing). To conclude, the album is a very impressive American new entry into the subgenre. It will be interesting for fans of guitar-driven heavy/power metal with soprano singing and keyboards, but with the keyboards as secondary to the guitar, and not vice versa.