Hard Rock • Sweden
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EMPIRE 21 is a brand new Hard Rock/Metal act from Sweden formed in 2013, determined to bring you a debut album as strong as it gets. Neither the band nor the album to come was brought together by coincidence, but rather by a urgent need to fill a gap in todays music scene.

The force behind EMPIRE 21 consists of: CJ Grimmark (Rob Rock, Narnia) - Guitars Ricard Hulteke - Vocals Tobias Enbert (Darkwater, Harmony) - Drums Andreas Ålöv - Bass John Svensson (Harmony) - Keyboards
Thanks to diamondblack for the addition

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EMPIRE 21 Empire 21 album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Empire 21
Hard Rock 2014

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EMPIRE 21 Empire 21

Album · 2014 · Hard Rock
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Time Signature
This is their story...

Genre: modern metal

Hailing from Sweden, Empire 21 is marketed as a hard rock / metal band, and this is their debut album.

I am not sure I would classify them as a hard rock band as such, although there are plenty of hard rock elements on the album. However, as the opening track 'When You're Falling' indicates, this is more of a modern post-Gothenburg metal album, combining chucking heavy metal riffage with melodic keyboards. While perhaps more oriented towards riffs and a slight AOR inspiration and definitely more variation, Empire 21 do remind me a bit of Amaranthe every now and again. The songs range from the slightly poppy opening track over the heavy and groovy 'All Is Lost' and the driving '100 Nights' to the alternative rock inspired 'No Matter the Winds of Change'.

While I have grown a bit tired of the more pop-oriented post-Gothenburg orientation that some Swedish metal artists have taken (basically, they popped up the melodeath genre and then removed the 'death'), I think that Empire 21's take on the whole thing is kind of refreshing and definitely solid. I am not a fan of Ricard Hulteke's more crooning vocal style and definitely prefer when he goes into belting-out-facemelters territory (which he does often).

A solid enjoyable modern metal release, Empire 21's debut should appeal to fans of Amaranthe and the like.

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