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Nico
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All Reviews/Ratings

70 reviews/ratings
CAPTAIN BEYOND - Captain Beyond Hard Rock | review permalink
ELOY - Floating Proto-Metal | review permalink
FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE - Impressionable Sounds of the Subsonic Hard Rock | review permalink
FATES WARNING - Awaken The Guardian US Power Metal | review permalink
QUEENSRŸCHE - Operation: Mindcrime Progressive Metal | review permalink
RUSH - 2112 Hard Rock | review permalink
RUSH - Hemispheres Hard Rock | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Metropolis, Part 2: Scenes From a Memory Progressive Metal | review permalink
ELOY - Ocean Non-Metal | review permalink
ELOY - Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes Non-Metal | review permalink
BLIND GUARDIAN - Battalions of Fear Speed Metal | review permalink
FATES WARNING - The Spectre Within US Power Metal | review permalink
BLIND GUARDIAN - Nightfall in Middle-Earth Power Metal | review permalink
QUEENSRŸCHE - Queensrÿche Traditional heavy metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - When Dream and Day Unite Progressive Metal | review permalink
THE MEZMERIST - The Innocent, the Forsaken, the Guilty Traditional heavy metal | review permalink
IRON MAIDEN - The Soundhouse Tapes NWoBHM | review permalink
THE MEZMERIST - The Innocent, the Forsaken, the Guilty Traditional heavy metal | review permalink
QUEENSRŸCHE - The Warning Traditional heavy metal | review permalink
RUSH - Rush Hard Rock | review permalink

See all reviews/ratings

Metal Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Non-Metal 20 3.30
2 Hard Rock 15 3.90
3 Traditional heavy metal 11 3.32
4 Progressive Metal 8 3.69
5 Proto-Metal 4 4.00
6 Metal Related 3 3.67
7 NWoBHM 3 3.33
8 Power Metal 2 3.75
9 Speed Metal 2 3.00
10 US Power Metal 2 4.25

Latest Albums Reviews

FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE We're Only in It for the Spacerock

Album · 2005 · Hard Rock
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FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE is a young band influenced by 70s' HAWKWIND and the stoner rock movement. Their first album "We're Only In It For The Spacerock" delivers a raw, energetic and powerful psychedelic metal. Heavy cosmic Jam into the universe!

The record opens with experimental old school synthesizer sounds which makes you immediately take off from Earth, to announce "Sannraijz", a catchy trippy metal tune with reverb effects. The baby of you-know-who's "Space Ritual"! Besides, "Sometimes Going Too Far is The Only Way to Go" ressembles a little HAWKWIND's "Time We Left this World Today". The disc continues with "Sannraijz 2", a pretty interesting acoustic version of the song featured before. However, the highlights here are undoubtedly the last two tracks.

The title song features 20 great minutes of instrumental dark space rock improvisation with musical and rhythm changes, alternating peaceful and powerful movements. This jam is sometimes reminiscent of SUBARACHNOID SPACE. The cosmic trip ends with the heavy "Make yourself heard for the sake of the world", a mini space rock epic with beautiful flute playing.

"We're Only In It For The Spacerock" is highly recommended to space and stoner rock fans, especially HAWKWIND, PINK FLOYD and early MONSTER MAGNET lovers.

FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE Impressionable Sounds of the Subsonic

Album · 2006 · Hard Rock
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Impressive hawks of the stoner rock

The Swedish band has quite evolved from their first release, and it shows. The line up has grown, the music is less raw, less chaotic, more structured and displays a larger variety of instruments. Vocals are more fluent and more spacey, due in part to the addition of a female vocalist. "Impressionable Sounds of the Subsonic" features top-notch stoner and space rock. A mindblowing cosmic journey exploring all types of planets!

As in "We're Only in it for the Spacerock", the album begins by setting up the atmosphere with synthesizers, guitars, drums and flute. The introduction sounds like a heavier version of ELOY. It goes on with "Utan Att Veta" which is maybe one of the best stoner tunes of the century. Powerful and freaky! The whole disc rocks and transports you in another universe far far away. From efficient heavy stoned riffs to relaxing moments through psychedelic sounds and acoustic pieces, from trance rhythms to bongos, through beautiful and angry flute playing, "Impressionable Sounds of the Subsonic" has nearly all! One can hear by moments influences from HYDRIA SPACEFOLK and PORCUPINE TREE. The disc finishes in an empty region of cosmos with an Hawaiian guitar jam.

One of the best space and stoner rock release. If you like 70s' HAWKWIND, HYDRIA SPACEFOLK, MONSTER MAGNET and PINK FLOYD, this album is for you!

FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE The Guitar Is Mightier Than the Gun

Album · 2009 · Hard Rock
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This third album from the Swedish space rockers shows a little inspiration inflexion compared to their previous opuses. With only three long tracks (four in the CD edition), the compositions has become less melodic, more stretched and improvised. "The Guitar Is Mightier Than the Gun" also marks another change with the discrete incursion of new elements for the band.

The opener and shortest song of the disc, "Demons & Haze", is simply one of the best compositions from the Swedishs. Best passage of the record, it possesses a powerful space stoner rock introduction with an unusual rhythm and vocal flow. Bombastic! The rest of the song is slower and features spacey keyboards reminiscent of Tim Blake. "Turn Left to the Mexican Barbeque" starts with a calm acoustic guitar, to continue with a heavy space metal jam with female vocals. Enjoyable, but we already heard better from FIRST BAND FROM OUTER SPACE. The 23 minutes title track is a little unusual for the band. Not entirely space rock or stoner, this piece alternates soft floyd-ish, psychedelic improvised and joyful cheesy moments. The middle part is too long and the music doesn't seem to go anywhere. Finally, the overall result is average.

The CD edition includes a 16 minutes long bonus track, "Smokin". This is rather a patchwork of different extracts than a structured composition. The song contains long calm passages, nervous moments, short middle-eastern melodies and HAWKWIND-esque touches. Not essential and also a bit lacking musical direction, but more convincing than the title track.

"The Guitar Is Mightier Than the Gun" is a little unequal and incoherent. The band wanted to evolve and emancipate from their initial stoner / HAWKWIND roots by proposing something new, which is a good thing. However, these novel elements are, on the one hand, stretched space rock improvisation (which has been done before in the 70's), and, on the other hand, soapy symphonic passages. The melodies are also less present than on their great previous album "Impressionable Sounds Of The Subsonic". The only remarkable track of the record is the opener "Demons & Haze".

Enjoyable if you like space rock and HAWKWIND, but not the best place to discover the band.

NIGHTWISH Oceanborn

Album · 1998 · Power Metal
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Nightwish's best album

"I'm listening to some super music right now"...

...said one of my best friends during my campus years. Intrigued, I immediately came to his room to check his affirmation, and... what an ear-shock! A female opera singer over a power metal song? What was this? Never heard that before! In my defence, at that time, I suppose many other people haven't either, as this was the album that really started it all...

Whereas the debut "Angels Fall First" was still hesitating in its approach and incorporated gothic touches, this second opus saws the band now fully assuming their lyrical heavy metal orientation by pushing its concept to the maximum. Both uncommon and refreshing in 1998, "Oceanborn" marries raging and energetic guitars though elaborated compositions with superb melodies, sometimes epic, sometimes melancholic, sublimed by Tarja Turunen's ethereal soprano voice. A classically trained female vocalist, bringing her talent and her 3 octaves range to this genre, was quite atypical at the time. Her crystalline interpretation literally carries the music to a whole new dimension, magic, enchanting, elegant, out of this world...

Not everything is perfect though. The disc contains some of the band's best tracks, but also less catchy passages.

The fast-paced "Stargazers" is a glorious heroic heavy metal opener that directly transport you into another place. Its dark interlude is beautiful. Completely different, the melodic mid-tempo "Gethseman" is tragic, even touching at times. However, my favorite tune is undoubtedly "Passion And The Opera". Epic and haunting, with Tarja's aerial vocalizations and a thrilling finale! The instrumental "Moondance" opens with piano and, supported by rocking guitars, possesses quite dancing folk vibes and numerous rhythm changes. A fairy tale... "The Riddler" is energetic and powerful, whereas "Walking In The Air" is a cover of "I'm Walking In The Air", from Howard Blake's 1982 film "The Snowman". NIGHTWISH's revisit is ethereal and floating...

As I said, some titles have less seduced me. The lyrical "Sacrament Of Wilderness" contains charming moments but is overall rather average. I'm not really fond of the two songs with Tapio Wilska - ex-singer of their fellow countrymen Finntroll - either. "Devil & The Deep Dark Ocean" is raging and oppressive, but fails to really lift off. Same goes for the "Stratovarius-esque" "The Pharaoh Sails To Orion", which includes pleasant Egyptian touches though. "Swanheart" is a melancholic and gracious ballad, but a bit soapy.

Anyway, "Oceanborn" remains an influential breakthrough album, paving the way for a new genre and for future female vocalists in the metal sphere. NIGHTWISH has now definitely crafted its own identity as well as its leadership. With this impacting second opus, the Finnishs impose themselves as one of the most important formation on the nascent revival scene at the end of the 90's and will gain international notoriety. Unfortunately, the later releases won't match the same level of quality and inspiration...

One of the best power/heavy metal with female singer record, and the one to start with if you're not familiar with NIGHTWISH. Fans of progressive metal will also appreciate the numerous ambiance changes within the tracks. A journey through a fairy tale suspended world...

ELOY Codename Wildgeese

Promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs) · 1985 · Non-Metal
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An ELOY soundtrack? Without Frank?

Deceiving... There is not much of ELOY's touch here, not even the space sci-fi rock approach they tried to develop in the mid 80's. One of the reason is that the band broke up after the former album, "Metromania", and three members recorded this soundtrack without Frank Bornemann under ELOY's name. The result is... pretty dated and uninspired. Synth pop rock put in short and mainly instrumental tracks. The (few) songs which save the record are often electronic.

The disc opens with "The Patrol", which first notes makes you wonder if it is truly music from ELOY you are listening to. The tune is poor and quickly boring. Same goes for "Hong Kong Theme I". "Hit And Run" is one the most enjoyable piece of the soundtrack with its futuristic and laser sound. Then comes the only sung moment of the disc, "Queen Of Rock'n'Roll", which is just a basic hair pop-metal song. "Destiny", "Deadlock" and "A Long Goodbye" work ok as ambient and mysterious tunes, whereas "Discovery", "Juke Box", "Cha-Shoen" and "On the Edge" are a bit lazy and repetitive. The end does not get better.

"Codename Wildgeese" is the only ELOY release without its leader Frank Bornemann and easily the worst. Don't expect enchanting melodies, guitar solos, symphonic evolutions or space metal here. The only interests are some electro ambient short pieces. The rest just ressembles a flat action movie soundtrack from the 80's.

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