MOB RULES Beast Reborn SPV/Steamhammer [Release date 24.08.18]
Mob Rules have been around for awhile now and although never reaching the heights of popularity of some fellow power metal bands, they have built a large and loyal following. Their latest album ‘Beast Reborn’ sees guitarist Sonke Janssen join the band, linking up with fellow guitarist Sven Ludke to produce suitably OTT metal solos when required.
Vocalist and sole remaining original member Klaus Dirks gives his all on the songs, be it the metal assault of ‘Travellers In Time’, which sounds a lot like Iron Maiden in the guitar sound, or the slow building ‘Revenant Of The Sea’ (the singing on this one is stunning). The band have added a little more symphonic ‘oomph’ to the proceedings and the closing ballad ‘My Sobriety Mind (For Those Who Left)’ is a piece of pure class. Maybe a little more variety like this one would have increased the album’s enjoyment.
There is a collector’s version of this album which will appeal to the avid fan. Overall a good album of symphonic/power metal, however not in the Premier League yet like say Kamelot or Freedom Call. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
MIKE VASS Notes From The Boat Unroofed Records [Release date 27.07.18]
Mike Vass has always been a keen lover of the sea and boats, so on this album as the title suggests he recorded it on his boat the Sweet Symphony. Joining him were ten musical guests including harpist Corrina Hewat, fiddle player Duncan Chishilm of Wolfstone and guitar/mandolin player Innes White.
Now this is a proper headphones album in that you can hear parts of the boat at times in the songs and there are various sounds to listen out for, including ‘Last Day’ where the song’s title is spelt out in the phonetic alphabet and a pack of cards on ‘Home’.
Plenty of moods and tempos on here, from the jaunty fiddle playing on ‘Inver’ through to the lovely, gentle harp on ‘Voices’. There is a even a quick blast of the ‘Captain Pugwash’ theme on ‘Bright Kirk’!
A wonderful set of instrumental pieces to enjoy over and over and preferably on a boat on a sunny day! ****
Review by Jason Ritchie
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Power Plays w/c 16 September (Mon-Fri)
BLOCK BUSTER Losing Gravity (Frontiers)
WATCH ME BREATHE Don’t Think I Haven’t Thought About It (The Label Group/INGrooves)
FIRES OF FREYA Take A Bow (indie)
BLACK STAR RIDERS Underneath The Afterglow (Nuclear Blast)
STOMPIN’ HEAT Shiny Curly Red Hair (indie)
Featured Albums w/c 16 September (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 THE DEFIANTS Zokusho (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 CORELEONI II (AFM Records)
14:00-16:00 TONY McLOUGHLIN True Native (Fuego)
Albums That Time Forgot (Mon-Fri)
BAD COMPANY Company Of Strangers (1995)
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