I had friends 'showing' this band to me for quite some time, but their sound didn't grab my attention at all. With their new release, I gave them a shot again and it was well worth it.
I have played this album a few times now and my favourite songs are "You've Lost Yourself", "Dance", "Monster In My Closet", "No Holding Back", "Mersal" and "Darkness Arise".
Myrath's music is full of different elements and while some songs are done in a positive way, others stand out more than the music itself, which is not what I'm really looking for. Apart from that, I can now say that I'm a fan of them.
RATING: 8.5 out of 10 added on August 10th, 2019
SWEET OBLIVION - (2019) Sweet Oblivion
Sweet Oblivion is yet another new project led by Frontiers Music and this time we have the great Geoff Tate on vocals.
What we have here is some prog metal mixed with hard rock, the highlights being "True Colors", "Sweet Oblivion", "My Last Story", "A Recess From My Fate", "Disconnect" and "The Deceiver".
After some poor releases by Geoff Tate under the Operation Mindcrime name, we finally have good music with him on board.
RATING: 8.7 out of 10 added on August 10th, 2019
TIMO TOLKKI'S AVALON - (2019) Return To Eden
Back in 2003 Timo Tolkki released a metal opera under the Avalon name, which is up to now one of my favourite albums. The sophomore album was quite disappointing. After a five year absence, we have part #3 from his metal opera.
There are songs here that grab you instantly while others are just OK. The highlights are "Promises", "Return To Eden", "Now And Forever", "We Are The Ones" and "Wasted Dreams".
This is a good power metal album, but it would have been a better release if it was not filled with stand-alone songs. Overall, this is much better than their second one, but it's not even close to the quality of the brilliant debut album.
RATING: 8.1 out of 10 added on August 10th, 2019
MAJESTICA - (2019) Above The Sky
If you're a fan of power metal band ReinXeed, you must be aware now they have changed their name to Majestica and here we have their "debut" album.
It has been quite some time that I don't listen to a new power metal album that grabs me at once and has such powerful songs with great choruses. This one has finally arrived and there are so many songs to name here, but my favourite ones are "Above The Sky", "Rising Tide", "Mötley True", "Night Call Girl", "Future Land" and "Alliance Forever".
I would like to compare their debut album with the brilliant debut albums released by Freedom Call and Sonata Arctica back in the late 90s. This is for sure one great power metal album and is definitely work checking out.
RATING: 9.2 out of 10 added on July 18th, 2019
SOTO - (2019) Origami
Jeff Scott Soto is for sure one of the most hard working vocalists out there and with his SOTO band he has album #3 out this year.
There is a lot of variety in the songs here and the highlights are opener "HyperMania", the fast-paced "World Gone Colder", the funky "AfterGlow" and the melodic "Vanity Lane".
This is not the album that will get you instantly with melodic songs such as Jeff's other bands, though. After some spins I have really enjoyed this album, out of his three SOTO albums this is for sure my favourite.
RATING: 8.3 out of 10 added on July 18th, 2019
TOBY HITCHCOCK - (2019) Reckoning
Toby Hitchcock is already a famous name in the AOR scene with his vocals on the Pride Of Lions albums. Here he brings his sophomore solo album.
The album starts with the melodic and amazing "No Surrender" which is my favourite on the album, alongside "Gift Of Flight". Other highlights are "Promise Me", "Behind The Lies", "Fighting For My Life", "This Is Our World" and "Someone Like You".
This is what AOR is all about and Toby really knows how to deliver such an amazing performance.
RATING: 9.1 out of 10 added on July 18th, 2019
TOBIAS SAMMET'S AVANTASIA - (2019) Moonglow
Tobias Sammet is the one who started all these metal operas back in 2000 and here we have Avantasia album #8.
My favourites of the album are "Ghost In The Moon", "Book Of Shallows", "Moonglow", "Starlight", "Alchemy", "The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn" and "Requiem For A Dream". The ballad "Invincible" and the cover of "Maniac" are just OK songs and that's the reason I took some points off the rating.
I can honestly say that after the first spins of their new album, it wasn't what I had been expecting. For me "Ghostlights" was a better album than this one, but the last couple of weeks I listened more since I attended their concert last Sunday in Brazil and damn this is a great album!
RATING: 9.7 out of 10 added on June 9th, 2019
A NEW REVENGE - (2019) Enemies & Lovers
Another band featuring the hard working Tim "Ripper" Owens, but this time with other known members that have caught my attention.
There is not a single weak song here on this short album and I could highlight all of them. The stand-out songs are "The Distance Between", "The Way", "Never Let You Go", "Glorious", "Enemies & Lovers" and "Here's To Us".
This is one incredible debut album which mixes melodic rock with some metal. Let's hope this is not the only album they release!
RATING: 9.4 out of 10 added on June 9th, 2019
BATTLE BEAST - (2019) No More Hollywood Endings
Battle Beast arrives with album #5 with some new elements on their sound.
Opener "Unbroken" is the right choice to get things going, but the next two songs are really disappointing. Other highlights are "Unfairy Tales", "The Hero", "The Golden Horde" and "World On Fire".
With the singles released, I was quite worried for this new album, but luckily the other songs on the album are really great ones. Not the best from Battle Beast but it's an enjoyable one to listen to.
RATING: 8.5 out of 10 added on June 9th, 2019
FIND ME - (2019) Angels In Blue
Robbie's vocals have caught my attention back in 2005 with Blanc Faces and we were lucky to have him again with Find Me's debut album back in 2013 and right now we have album #3 from them.
What we have here is AOR at the best quality, even though some songs can sound alike, I just don't care at all as long as they are done just great. My favourites are "No Tears In Paradise", "True Believer", "Straight For Eternity", "Can't Let Go", "Living A Lie", "Show Me What You'd Die For" and "Desperate Dreams".
I have enjoyed all Robbie's work with Blanc Faces and now with Find Me, this is another strong AOR album!
RATING: 9.0 out of 10 added on June 9th, 2019
WHITESNAKE - (2019) Flesh & Blood
After some delays on the release of their new album, Whitesnake brings album #13 just right after celebrating their 40th anniversary.
Here we can find some great songs, other OK songs and some that are not that memorable. The highlights are "Good To See You Again", "Shut Up & Kiss Me", my favourite "Always & Forever", "Flesh & Blood", "Heart Of Stone" and "Sands Of Time".
This is a good classic hard rock album by Whitesnake, but not an album I'll be listening too much to in the months to come.
RATING: 8.3 out of 10 added on June 9th, 2019
LEVERAGE - (2019) DeterminUs
Leverage has been on a hiatus for ten years, but now they strike back in 2019 with a new vocalist and guitarist.
Opener "Burn Love Burn" with its short intro, amazing chorus and the different ranges through the song starts the album just brilliant. This new album is full of diversity in each song. Other highlights are "Wind Of Morrigan", "Red Moon Over Sonora", "Afterworld's Disciple", "Heaven's No Place For Us", "Rollerball" and "Troy". I must also point out the song "When We Were Young", which is one of the best ballads recently recorded. This song really gave me some goosebumps with a brilliant performance by Kimmo Blom.
The band's previous albums are all amazing efforts and with this new one, they have done it again, with a different line-up and a change in sound. I enjoy this album as much as I've enjoyed their previous albums.
RATING: 9.2 out of 10 added on May 18th, 2019
IRON FIRE - (2019) Beyond The Void
Their debut album marked my life back in the late 90s as it was one of the first power metal albums that I've listened to and still do from time to time.
There are some great songs here, but it lacks those memorable ones like the early Iron Fire. The highlights here are "Beyond The Void", "Final Warning", "Cold Chains Of The North", "Old Habits Die Hard", "One More Bullet" and "Out Of Nowhere".
On their last album they already changed their sound towards more power/thrash and it was not their best release, this one follows the same path. I personally like this one more than "Among The Dead", but still they have better albums on their already long discography.
RATING: 8.1 out of 10 added on May 18th, 2019
SOLARUS - (2019) Darkest Days
Even though their debut album was released in early 2017, it was only at the end of last year that I've listened to their debut album, which is great. Right here we have their sophomore album.
After the short intro we have the song "My Darkest Days", which is just OK, but then we have "Limbo" that is so powerful and sticking in your mind instantly. If we had this song as opener of the album, it would've get things going already at the beginning. Other highlights are "Arrival", "Dear Saviour", "Embers In The Rain", "My World" and "In Memoriam (Immortal)".
If you enjoy Borealis, make sure to listen to this band as they have similar sounds but with female vocals. Their new album is better than the debut, it's time for a label to sign them for a future release!
RATING: 8.8 out of 10 added on May 18th, 2019
IRON SAVIOR - (2019) Kill Or Get Killed
Iron Savior has been on the road for quite some time and they always tend to deliver great speed/power metal albums.
Even though the songs sound alike here and the same goes on with their past albums, I really don't care as the final result is always positive for me. The stand-out songs are "Kill Or Get Killed", "Roaring Thunder", "Eternal Quest", "Sinner Or Saint", "Stand Up And Fight" and "Never Stop Believing".
I've never been a die-hard fan of Iron Savior, but their albums always have those anthemic songs that grabs me at once and makes me sing along for days. This is what happens again on their new album, definitely one great power metal album to bang your head!
RATING: 9.4 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
QUEENSRÿCHE - (2019) The Verdict
After some mediocre albums, and I include "Operation Mincrime II" on this list, a new rise for Queensrÿche was settled back in 2013 when Todd La Torre has been added to the band's line-up.
The new album starts in the good old classic Queensrÿche style, with the first four songs being my favourite ones. Other highlights are "Bent" and "Launder The Conscience".
This album is just amazing, it's for sure their best album since "Empire" back in 1990.
RATING: 8.9 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
DREAM THEATER - (2019) Distance Over Time
Dream Theater is without a doubt the most known band in the prog metal genre and I was really looking forward to listen to this new album after so many great reviews.
There are some amazing songs here, I would like to mention "Untethered Angel", "Fall Into The Light", "S2N" and my favourite "Paralyzed". I also need to point out the song "Out Of Reach", which is just really disappointing.
Comparing to the band's last albums, this is for sure the best they have released recently, I would also put this one on my top 5 DT albums.
RATING: 8.8 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
EVERGREY - (2019) The Atlantic
Evergrey is a band that I don't listen to much nowadays. I used to listen a lot to them some years ago since my brother had an Evergrey cover band.
What we have here is dark prog metal at the best quality. There are so many songs to highlight here, but my favourites are "A Silent Arc", "Weightless", "A Secret Atlantis", "Currents" and "This Ocean".
This is probably the best album they have put out in recent years. After I've listened to this album, I've been listening more to old Evergrey classic songs and the new album too. What a brilliant release!
RATING: 9.2 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
LAST IN LINE - (2019) II
I wasn't really expecting Last In Line to bring another album until the news came out end of last year and luckily we have another one from these guys to listen to.
The first half of the album has the best songs on offer, with tracks like "Black Out The Sun", "Landslide", "Year Of The Gun" and "Give Up The Ghost", while on the second half the quality falls and we have the good songs "Electrified" and "False Flag".
Overall this is another good classic hard rock album with some old Dio influences. Definitely worth checking out.
RATING: 8.4 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
INGLORIOUS - (2019) Ride To Nowhere
Inglorious is already back on track with a new album. Just three years after their debut album, we have their album #3
The album starts amazing with "Where Are You Now?" but the next songs are not in the same vein and maybe if it wasn't for the amazing opener, I could have enjoyed the next songs a little bit more. Other highlights here are "Queen", "Time To Go", "I Don't Know You" and the brilliant ballad "Glory Days".
This is not a bad album, it's just that their previous albums were more enjoyable. Just my opinion now, I'd like to see Nathan in a band or project with a heavier sound, it would for sure be a phenomenal album.
RATING: 7.5 out of 10 added on April 28th, 2019
TEMPLE BALLS - (2019) Untamed
Temple Balls debut album back in 2017 came unnoticed to me, but fortunately this one I was able to have a listen.
The new album is full of hard/sleaze rock tunes. Opener "Infinity" is the right choice to start the album which has other strong songs such as "Kill The Voice", "Distorted Emotions", "Ball And Chain", "Leap Of Faith" and my favourite "Seven Seas Of Wonder".
Even though Finland is known for the melodic power metal bands, now we're surprised on this hard rock Finnish band, and what a nice surprise it was for me to listen to them. This is one great hard rock album! Also check their debut album, it's very good!
RATING: 8.8 out of 10 added on April 7th, 2019
DARKWATER - (2019) Human
Darkwater's third album comes nine years after their last record.
I can honestly say that I have not heard any of the band's previous albums before and this new record is full of great prog elements. My favourite songs are "A New Beginning", "In Front Of You", "Alive Part II", "Insomnia" and "Burdens".
Please don't take so many years to release a new album, but if the time was precious to record this, OK we can wait!
RATING: 8.5 out of 10 added on April 7th, 2019
DEVICIOUS - (2019) Reflections
Not so long after the release of their debut album, DeVicious brings us "Reflections".
What we have here is melodic rock with some catchy songs. There are many highlights here and I would pick "Long Way Home", "Never Let You Go", "Desire", "Hungarian Girl", "We're Dying", "Run Together" and "Feel The Heat".
If you're a fan of Ammunition (Age Sten Nilssen even has guest vocals on one song), this is one great melodic rock album to check out. I gave this more spins than their debut album.
RATING: 8.4 out of 10 added on April 7th, 2019
WITHIN TEMPTATION - (2019) Resist
Even though Within Temptation has been on the road for quite some time, I got involved more into their music last year.
On this new album, there's a strong change of style from song to song and this is what I like it. My favourite songs here are "The Reckoning", "Raise Your Banner", "Holy Ground", "In Vain" and "Mercy Mirror". Another thing to point here is how amazing Sharon's vocals are on this album, such an angel voice!
I can understand some complaints about the change on their style, but I still like their early sound and their more alternative rock nowadays. Resist or not, this is Within Temptation!
RATING: 8.2 out of 10 added on March 17th, 2019
SPIRITS OF FIRE - (2019) Spirits Of Fire
I remember like it was yesterday when Frontiers announced this new line-up and I was really shocked and waiting to hear the outcome.
With the singles released, it definitely lost some of the high hopes I had. I would only highlight here "It's Everywhere", "Never To Return" and "Alone In The Darkness".
This is one album that will soon be forgotten with so many good releases that is yet to come this year. Another point here is the production, it is beyond weak!
RATING: 5.2 out of 10 added on March 17th, 2019
IMPERIA - (2019) Flames Of Eternity
Imperia has been active since 2003, but it was only last year I heard about them with news of a new album, their album #5 entitled "Flames Of Eternity".
The first set of songs here are very nice, but the last couple of songs the quality fails a lot. The highlights here are "Fear Is An Illusion", "Unspoken Words", "Book Of Love" and "Blinded".
With a long list of symphonic female-fronted bands nowadays, is Imperia trying to reign with this new release? I'm afraid not! With a couple of songs cut from the tracklist, this could be one huge album.
RATING: 7.2 out of 10 added on March 17th, 2019
VIANA - (2019) Forever Free
Viana's debut album was a very enjoyable album and here we have their second effort with new vocalist Bryan Cole.
The album starts brilliant with the catchy "Forever Free". Other highlights are "Heart Of Stone", "Who Do You Think You Are", "Do You Remember", "Friday Night" and "We Will Never Say Goodbye".
If you're into melodic rock, be sure to check out this album!