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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 10 November 2012
Trailer music, a label which whilst accurate does not often convey what kind of music one will experience when listening to Two Steps From Hell, City of the Fallen, Immediate Music or Globus. Epic music is a better label, fantastic orchestrations, bombastic choirs, beautiful melodies and soaring power which just makes one want to awe, write absurd youtube comments or fight epic battles on the xbox or computer. Either way, this is the third release from Two Steps from Hell, not including Thomas Bergersen's solo release, which is just as fine and at times exceeds the Nick Pheonix collobaration pieces. Third time public release with mainly new material, does it hold up?

Yes. Over 20 tracks of music and a great deal is good stuff but the main difference with prior releases is how experimental this album gets, there's techno music found in the first track, the vocals are more prominent than ever and feature lyrics in the penultimate one, which is something I'm not personally a fan of, choirs and vocals yes but not conventional songs, just takes me out of the moment of awe which these people bring into the genre. Combining that with some quite generic pieces and this album doesn't reach the simple majesty of "Invincible" or the edge of "Archangel" which made them fresh and interesting to listen to. Also I would have wanted more tracks from their non-public releases on their old albums, Earth, Jump, Run Like Hell, Magika etc.

Despite this though Two Steps from Hell still delivers plenty of excellent, epic and entrancing tracks, my personal favourite being the magical "Winterspell" which just conveys that childhood sense of seeing snowfall perfectly. Also others, such as "Blackheart" with its dark strings and "For the Win" which does what every track in the vein of "Heart of Couage" does perfectly builds you up for the fight and the victory. So overall, some of the experimentation doesn't work and can be just annoying at times whithout adding much in constrast to the orchestration, but I will stil buy it, because Two Steps from Hell are forever at the top of the game when it comes to making life seem bigger, more epic and more majestic at every turn.
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on 26 January 2013
The first few tracks disappointed me at first, but after listening on I heard some amazing tracks, such as Blackheart, and Winterspell. The music is haunting and powerful, although unlike it's predecessor 'Archangel' It does have a couple of tracks I would rather skip past, but a massive handful I can not live without now! Great music, great price!
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on 21 November 2012
Once again Thomas Bergersen shows his imagination, skill and will to create beautiful music. Set across what feels to me personally as a mix of both the future and the past, we have a perfect combination with dazzling results in this latest album from the fantastic artist.

In short? You won't be disappointed.
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on 27 January 2014
I was already a huge fan of Two Steps from Hell through their "Invincible" and "Archangel" albums... and "Skyworld" just reinforces that. Some tracks which start off a bit strange (for TSFH), such as "el Dorado" transform into soaring pieces of musical art. "Starfleet" is another one which triggers all kinds of images in my head.

Some people see albums like these are fluff, or pseudo classical... but if they open their minds and their ears they will be transported to worlds as yet unknown, or have their hearts broken. The tracks may be shorter than most classical pieces, but the quality more than makes up for that.
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on 1 December 2012
It would appear Thomas and Nick aren't letting there standards slip the tiniest bit. . . . . . .
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on 9 August 2013
I love these guys, I have 3 of their albums now, and I was a bit worried that all their tunes would start to sound the same, and whilst most of them are similar to each other, there is always something that makes it different in its own way. I love listening to this music whilst in the office, it really helps me concentrate, and also when I'm on my bike rides, it's a great sound to have in your ears to spur you on.
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VINE VOICEon 3 May 2013
I accidentally came across Two Steps From Hell a year or so ago when I liked the sound of Protectors of the Earth and found out it was one of their tracks. Having since lapped up Invincible and Archangel, Skyworld is their latest effort and it doesn't disappoint.

The guys are trying a few different things here, with the opening tune All Is Hell That Ends Well breaking out into an electronic theme towards the end being quite a shock the first time you hear it. They have also thrown in a few, well, songs, which are a pretty mixed bag and apart from Sun & Moon don't work too well for me. At first I worried this was a sign of a new direction for Two Steps, but I needn't have done as there is still plenty of epic movie trailer goodness going on in this album.

Particularly stirring tracks are Skyworld, Blizzard, For The Win and El Dorado. They are great examples of the kind of orchestral wizardry that instantly make you feel as if you are taking part in the best moments of a great action movie whilst actually only listening to a bit of music. Two Steps can make your hairs stand on end like no one else, and although they take musical cues from some of the great movie composers, the quality of their original work is staggering and I not only wholeheartedly recommend this album, I can't wait for their next either.
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on 12 May 2013
All Is Hell That Ends Well - Cinematic dubstep... thing. Whatever it is, it works.

Titan Dream - Straight into that feeling of exploration, swooping phrases, great TSFH staple track.

SkyWorld - Would fit right in for an Assassin's Creed trailer.

El Dorado - Arabic + Sci-Fi + Pirates of the Caribbean + Apollo 13 = My favourite track.

The End Is The Beginning - Strange and interesting experimental track combining haunting vocals with a heavy rock sound. Ends dramatically.

Winterspell - Beautifully simple melodies with a heavy backing. Reminds me of David Newman's Serenity Theme a bit.

Blackheart - Soft and delicate chirpyness, into what seems like a ballroom dance, violin solo reminiscent of Lindsey Stirling.

Dark Ages - Starts thudding like a factory, blending into arabic/rock with chanting and just keeps growing in tension. Cool stabby chants at the end.

Our Last Hope - Mass Effecty synth (bit like Mars), Inceptiony low brass, buzzy harmony elements and unusual chord patterns make this feel really chaotic and desperate.

Icarus - Smooth synth and orchestra build establishes a real feeling of noble grandeur. Would fit well as Star Trek trailer music.

For The Win - Would fit an Elder Scrolls Online trailer well, mix of fantasy themes and fast warlike beats.

Sun & Moon - Another experimental track, mixes a slow slimy synth rhythm with grand vocals and some dubstep elements for unexpectedly good effect. Sounds more like Celldweller than TSFH but branching out is pretty much essential on a 3rd album to stay fresh.

Big Sky - Wild West! Nuff said.

Blizzard - Dark plinky melodies with rising orchestra and synth and bass drops, TSFH staple with dubstep influence.

Breathe - Slow moving intro for maximum emotion, real 'end of a journey' sort of track with Mass Effecty bobbley synth sounds. Big emotional chant at the end.

Ocean Kingdom - Instantly atmospheric, feels like a great big adventure! Like a reprise of Titan Dream. Odd really, Breathe would've made a better last track.

The other tracks would probably make fantastic trailer music but aren't so great to just sit and listen to.
The exception being Back To The Earth, which fails to be amazing on account of the awful singer choice.
It might be interesting to hear a cover.
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on 15 January 2013
Two Steps From Hell have been quite experimental in this album. The first track, for example, features dubstep near the end and some songs contain vocals, something I've never seen used in this company before. However, I personally don't believe these changes detract from the quality of the album. It still retains its exciting, adrenaline-rising, music. Some of my favourite tracks have to be 'Skyworld', 'Winterspell' and particularly 'Sun and Moon.'
Some may not like the differences, but I'd go for it, just because it's Two Steps From Hell.
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on 19 January 2013
You know how some older folks just won't accept modern music, culture or technology and simply refuse to become a part of it?
Well, I'm only 19 and already have insight to this point of view...

Skyworld is, of the three albums TSFH have produced thus far, the weakest in my opinion. The music is fantastic, as always, but the majority of tracks fall under the category of 'experimental'... and I consider these mostly failed experiments.

But hey, I'm actually glad that TSFH have stepped up to the bar and decided to try going above and beyond their usual port of call, and I guess they should certainly try again, though I hope not any time soon. The first track caught me way off guard, and I didn't like the dubstep at first, but it's slooowwwwlllyyy growing on me... the other tracks though? No... not so much. My favourite track is Icarus, due to it's high orchestral presence and lack of experimental augmentation, but even this pales in comparison to some of the beauty present in Invincible and Archangel.

Over all, if you're willing to move on with TSFH and taste their experimental side, there's enough of both worlds to scrape through a good listen. But if, like myself, you much prefer and expect that wonderful and epic orchestral sound to blow you away, expect to be disappointed with SkyWorld...
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