Helloween is primarily known for their Keeper of the Seven Keys albums, which many define as the two most influential albums in the history of power metal. That being said, there is much dilution in their discography, especially in the years immediately following their magna opera. Recently, they’ve come out strong with The Dark Ride, Gambling With the Devil, and 7 Sinners. So in conclusion, there’s no way to predict the quality of a Helloween album nowadays.
Bloodbound released their latest album on March 18. It was done so through AFM records and is named Unholy Cross. I have formerly stated in other reviews that bands of the heavy-power metal genre often fall into the trap of conformity; Unholy Cross is no exception. Fortunately for the band, the music is at a higher level than the average heavy-power metal record.
Slightly over a year ago, I received debut demo material from a New Jersey band calling themselves Skyliner. Just recently, I got a hold of their latest EP entitled The Alchemist. Though I was quite pleased with the eponymous release, this one even further impressed me. Everything from the production to the music itself is a step up from what was already a quality product. If you thought Skyliner was good, be sure to check this one out!
Armod, which is the most recent album by Falconer, was released on June 3 through Metal Blade records. This is record is my first encounter with the band. I honestly was hoping for more than what was given due to the band’s reputation. Still, Armod is a good album and an enjoyable listen.
Many, such as myself, have been waiting for too long for the Symphony X album to come out. Well good news everyone: Iconoclast is out on June 17! It is available in either one-disc or two-disc format. I listened to the latter and believe me when I say Iconoclast met my expectations, despite the ridiculously high bar set by Symphony X.
June 7 is the date when the power metal group Pharaoh released their latest album. The record is Ten Years and was released through Cruz Del Sur records. This is my first encounter with any music from the band and I was quite pleased. I had heard many great things and though they are not fully embodied through this album, it is surely shown here that there is merit to the compliments.
From Chaos to Eternity is the newest Rhapsody of Fire album to be released through Nuclear Blast on June 17. It is a continuation from their 2010 album, The Frozen Tears of Angels, as well as the same-year EP, The Cold Embrace of Fear: A Dark Romantic Symphony. I have not yet heard the former, and I was not too impressed with the EP. However, From Chaos to Eternity has most certainly won this reviewer over.
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