Fireworks

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W. Angel's Conquest - 'Taste Of Life' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/9f/86/60/w-angels-conquest-taste-of-life-10-1451934513.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 04, 2016    
 
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These Ukrainians are offering the same flair as many bands with a much higher profile.

Conquest (as they were previously known) have been around since 1996 and on the strength of this record can lay claim to being the Ukraine's best Power Metal band (although I'm not sure how stiff the competition is). This is their fifth album but it shows a definite development in their sound. This is partly down to new lead singer Konstantin "Laars" Naumenko who takes over the singing duties; he has that soaring Michael Kiske type approach which suits the music well.

This is well executed and thought out Metal. Nicholas W. Angel's guitar is powerful and he unleashes varied, Neo-Classical solos throughout but the album's strength is not that it merely serves as vehicle for his fret-board wizardry but rather it's all about the songs and he's happy to share air time with the keyboards and it's these that bring a Progressive and Melodic edge to the band's sound.

The music has an unmistakably European flavour and if you didn't know better you'd swear the sound and melodies on 'Revolution' and 'Sunrise' were from a Scandinavian band. Despite the fact the keyboard and guitar intros can sound similar over a whole record and the frantic drumming would benefit from more light and shade (the double bass drum loses its power when played constantly), the songs have enough variety to make this a success as a cohesive, listenable album.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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'Fellowship' with its Symphonic undertones has a good angular riff, an enthralling rapid fire solo and a heroic chorus. The aforementioned 'Sunrise' is closer to The Poodles than Power Metal whereas 'Martian Gods' is blunter and heavier. They even give us a ballad in the form of 'Blooming Day' which is a highlight. It starts from a vocal, backed by only drums and bass before the guitar joins in to build weight and it has a big, hooky chorus that many a Melodic Rock band would be proud of, all decorated with a sprinkling of keyboards.

Okay, a song like the title track might not raise the heart beat much but they finish the album strongly with 'The Road', showing there's much more to this band than just heads-down Metal (which they can do too). It begins with an acoustic intro borrowed from the Coverdale Page album before it goes into a stirring Power Metal anthem.

There's some terrific guitar and keyboard playing, at times, on songs that are multi-dimensional. Some of those choral hooks need more work if they are to be successfully hot branded into your memory but if you like your Euro Power metal then you'd do well to check these Ukrainians out, offering the same flair as many bands with a much higher profile.

Duncan Jamieson

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