Frontiers [Release date 09.10.20]
Yngwie Malmsteen has introduced many fine vocalists to rock and metal fans including Jeff Scott Soto and Mark Boals, who sang on the classic ‘Trilogy’ album. Since then he has worked with many bands and artists including Iron Mask, Royal Hunt and Vindictiv.
Mark Boals utilised many top musicians including Vinnie Appice, Tony Macalpine, drum wizard Virgil Donati and keyboards player Vitalij Kuprij. Most recently, Mark released a melodic metal album with Vision Divine and Labyrinth guitarist Olaf Thorsen under the name Shining Black on Frontiers in the summer.
Disc one covers his solo albums, including his debut solo release which was a Japanese only issue and included guitarist Doug Aldrich. Pick of disc one are ‘Jane’, ‘Lady Babylon’ and ‘Up To You’. The latter uses harmony vocals to great effect.
Ring Of Fire feature on disc two. ‘My Déjà Vu’ is as good a piece of symphonic/neoclassical metal you’ll hear. Plenty of guitar, keys and the soaring vocals of Mark Boals. ‘Mother Russia’ allows the band to stretch out musically. Indeed the album it comes from, 2014’s concept based ‘Battle Of Leningrad’, is well worth investigating further if you haven’t already.
If you are a fan of Ring Of Fire add another star to the rating as try as I might I can’t seem to enjoy them as much as Royal Hunt and Artension. ***
Review by Jason Ritchie
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12:00-13:00 FATES WARNING Long Day, Good (Metal Blade)
14:00-16:00 PADRAIG JACK Making Sand (indie)
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