Helstar-Vampiro ©2016 EMP Label Group
Those familiar with Helstar will more than likely remember the album 'Nosferatu' and its themes. When revisiting something of the caliber that 'Nosferatu' was you know there is going to be pretty high expectations. 'Vampiro' takes that challenge and runs with out. 'Vampiro' ends up being a solid power metal outing that in my opinion achieves its goals. This is a very heavy record with a consistent feel start to end. I feel it lives up to the standards of the band and will have definite appeal to fans of the genre. The band have added another vampire oriented classic to their catalog. Solid metal record!
Iron Fire-Among the Dead ©2016 Crime Records
Here is a band that I haven't checked out in quite a while. Iron Fire is a solid power metal act out of Denmark that has released a fair amount of albums from the debut 'Thunderstorm through to the new album 'Among the Dead'. Musically, the new album packs a good punch from start to finish. I loved the way the album intro starts with its zombie theme that then blazes into the opening title track. The album artwork is equally cool . 'Among the Dead' rips and tears start to finish with a great rhythmic pound and plenty of attitude. This could be some of the bands best work to date!
Dare-Sacred Ground ©2016 Legend Records
Been listening to Dare for quite a while now. The band always offer up a great atmospheric sound in their music and 'Sacred Ground' continues this trend. It's good melodic rock with an edge to it. The album has a very good flow to it. You can just sit back, plug in and let your mind wander off with a record such as this. As to what is usual with a Dare record, it doesn't usually get really heavy. The band offer up enough edge to keep a variety of audiences interested. Darren and the band have a real talent in writing in the style of what Dare is and the band to me is fairly unique. Definitely recommended!
Flaw-Divided We Fall ©2016 Pavement Entertainment
Stumbled on this band quite some time back. More recently I was pretty pumped to hear they were going to record some more material. I like this band and while they have some good stuff out there, it's always great to have more. 'Divided We Fall' is a solid record. It showcases a fairly angry sound that doesn't lose the trademark Flaw sound. To expand even further, this is a pretty heavy record overall that does include the usual Flaw melodic undertones in it. It was also interesting to hear 'My Letter' done again in an acoustic setting. Still like the original a bit better however. Good stuff!
Fates Warning-Theories of Flight ©2016 Inside Out Music
As with a lot of the Fates Warning stuff, I always end up holding judgment on the record until there have been multiple listens. The bands records always blow me away in the end, but sometimes it take a few listens before it hits me. 'Theories of Flight' is an amazing record. Progressive done in a fashion that has a ton of appeal. Things don't ever get carried away. The band is very disciplined and tends to let the overall songs carry the day more than just the instrumentation. This is a great record start to finish. The bonus disc has some very good melodic acoustic stuff and is worth searching out for.