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Profile for Jeff the Llamacorn > Reviews

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Content by Jeff the Llamacorn
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Reviews Written by
Jeff the Llamacorn "JeffLlama" (City of Jeff)

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The Art of Dying
The Art of Dying
Price: £18.69

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Speed Metal Excellence, 24 Aug. 2011
This review is from: The Art of Dying (Audio CD)
Other reviewers have already eloquently described the history of Death Angel, so I won't delve back into their past recordings, but concentrate on this splendid return, after a 14 year hiatus.
It's quite simply molten heavy speed metal with scorching vocals from Mark Osegueda.
All songs are strong, but my stand out tracks are Land Of Blood, Thrown To The Wolves, Thicker Than Blood, Spirit and the finale, Word To The Wise. However, I could have easily mentioned the rest of them.
It's fast, it's furious, it's intense, but it's also controlled, by excellent musicianship.
Highly recommended.

Slave to the Thrill
Slave to the Thrill
Price: £11.09

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A secret hidden hard rock masterpiece, 24 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Slave to the Thrill (Audio CD)
Hurricane's third album from 1990 and by far their best.
Many people will probably be totally unaware of this awesome hard rock album.
For a start it features two major talents, namely; Kelly Hansen, now lead singer with Foreigner and the much travelled guitar maestro, Doug Aldrich, currently plying his trade with Whitesnake.
Eleven strong tracks, with no fillers.
It's hard rock with melodic overtones, crunching guitar riffs and piercing high level vocals.
Stand out tracks "Young Man","In The Fire", Temptation" and the finale "Smiles Like A Child".
Highly recommended, you will not be disappointed.

On Through The Night
On Through The Night
Price: £5.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hard Rock to Soft Rock, pity!, 24 Aug. 2011
This review is from: On Through The Night (Audio CD)
This is Def Leppard's debut album from 1980 and by far their heaviest hard rock offering.
Unfortunately, they found their fame and fortune, by playing Stateside radio friendly rock on their following albums.
I suppose, you can't blame them for that.
This album is hard rock through and through, no weak tracks or fillers.
I remember the first time I heard the raw energy of "Rocks Off" so many years ago, and that track still sounds great today.
British heavy rock pounds out with "Wasted", "Satellite", and what an awesome guitar riff on "Answer To The Master".
They show their song writing talents on "When The Walls ... and the finale "Overture".
The dual guitar attack of Steve Clarke and Pete Willis is captivating throughout, their riffs and solos are memorable and original.
It's a pity (well for me anyway), that songs like Photograph from 1983's Pyromania, catapulted them into stardom and then into the world of American pop rock.

The Divine Conspiracy
The Divine Conspiracy
Price: £9.39

0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars My Dad would say, it all sounds the same, and it does!, 23 Aug. 2011
This review is from: The Divine Conspiracy (Audio CD)
Comparisons have been made with Nightwish, but in my opinion, Epica are not in the same league.
I'm not being disrespectful, but having listened to this album several times, I believe the song writing is weak and the quality of musicianship is questionable.
Simeone Simons is a beautiful singer and I believe her rich talents deserve better.
From positive beginnings, they all too often revert back to their familiar crunching guitar and double bass rhythm, the same monotonous pattern blights most of the tracks.
Bands like Nightwish have talented song composers and are able to offer a variety to their Gothic Metal.
Not knowing the band that well, I can only judge them on this evidence and have concluded that they are limited in their quality.
I'm sure die hard fans will disagree passionately.

Into The Wild
Into The Wild
Price: £13.57

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad effort from those ageing rockers, 23 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Into The Wild (Audio CD)
I have pretty much discounted Uriah Heep over the last 30 years - my God, has it been that long?
When you look back, they didn't really make a classic album (calm down fans), they did however, make some fantastic music over about five albums from '71 to '74.
Great memories: Sunrise/Gypsy/Easy Livin'/Look At Yourself/Sweet Lorraine and so on.
Their previous album, "Wake The Sleeper", was a step up from their previous releases and "Into The Wild" continues in the same vein, offering straight forward hard rock, driven by a guitar/keyboard attack, but lacking the real essence of their seventies sound.
I have to admit that Bernie Shaw does an excellent job again on vocals and the first part of the album is very listenable.
It does peter away towards the end with some very average tracks.
Highlights, for me, are the title track "Into The Wild", "I'm Ready" and "Southern Star".
You know, it's close to being a very good album, but just falls a little short on content and that real desire to push the boundaries that one step further.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 6, 2012 8:33 AM GMT

At The Edge Of Time (Ltd.Digi)
At The Edge Of Time (Ltd.Digi)
Price: £9.72

4.0 out of 5 stars At last, something that nearly equals "Imaginations ..., 23 Aug. 2011
For me, Blind Guardian, have never been able to reach the successful heights of their 1995 release "Imaginations From The Other Side", a true masterpiece.
Their subsequent albums have always been acceptable, all containing 2 or 3 great tracks, but overall, fairly average.
(Some people may disagree about "Nightfall ...)
Orchestral movement starts, Gothic choirs accompany and then the storming guitar riffs and double bass drums of the opening track, you know that Blind Guardian are definitely back.
All tracks are thumping power metal, with the exception of Curse My Name and War Of The Throngs, where they move into their trademark medieval folk style, with Hansi Kursch, once again, showing that he is the vocal master in this genre.
All songs are strong and no fillers.
Favourite tracks are probably Road Of No Release and Valkyries.
They have come very close, on this occasion, of matching that timeless 1995 classic.

Astral Episode
Astral Episode
Price: £17.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Epic concoction of power prog hard rock, 20 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Astral Episode (Audio CD)
Another Swedish amalgamation bring us more of that classic symphonic power progressive heavy rock.
And this lot do it very very well!
Manic keyboards and lightning fast crazed guitar work, quickly marching into driving rock, kicks off their second release with Through Dreams And Reality.
A haunting intro to Astral Episode, again moves tempo, into some power rock action.
The third track, Lord Of The Winds, is an absolute classic rock track, truly showing off the talents of operatically trained screecher, Nils Patrik Johansson. The middle part of the song just blasts into a thunderous guitar riff from Magnus Nilsson, accompanied by pounding drum work.
The next track Dazzle The Devil continues with more power rock, ending in some nice fancy guitar licks.
A haunting brooding beat moves us into another cracker in Back To The Dark - more stunning vocals and gifted axe meanderings.
The one disappointment is, Presence Of Mind, which is an instrumental of Victorian parlor keyboard self indulgence, which was probably not necessary.
The album cranks up again with the power rock of Reversation, before reaching it's finale, with the epic Seventh Star Fantasy.
This one's got the lot, Gothic choirs permeating into medieval folk and then straight hard rock, flicking backwards and forwards through each genre.
This has certainly given me a thirst to check out their other work, and I will.

Evil is Forever
Evil is Forever
Price: £7.59

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astral Doors Best Album!!, 20 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Evil is Forever (MP3 Download)
This is the second release from the Swedish rockers, following up on the impressive opener, Of The Son And The Father.
For me, this is by far their best album, containing out and out heavy rock throughout.
There are no weak songs and certainly no fillers.
You know what to expect from the opening blitz of "Bride Of Christ", which continues all the way through this masterful piece of work.
Unfortunately, they haven't been able to match up to this release on future albums, only New Revelation, coming close.
A must for all rock fans.

Of The Son And The Father [Us Import]
Of The Son And The Father [Us Import]
Price: £17.51

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Opening gambit for the Swedish Hard Rockers, 20 Aug. 2011
Astral Doors are a Swedish Heavy Rock band and this is their first album, released in 2003.
They play out and out heavy rock and have, in their ranks, one of the best rock vocalist around, namely Nils Patrik Johansson.
As you will hear, from their opening two tracks, "Cloudbreaker" and "Of The Son And The Father", which will become classic releases, his voice is reminiscent of Dio, maybe closer to David Coverdale, but also add's his own unique style.
Tracks 3 + 5 are slightly weaker offerings, hence not quite getting all five stars.
The rest all crash along in true heavy rock style.
Great opening album and as we now know, there are better and worse albums to follow.

The Sacred Talisman [Explicit]
The Sacred Talisman [Explicit]

4.0 out of 5 stars Breakthrough Album for the Swedish Rockers, 20 Aug. 2011
Reviewing this album in 2011, twelve years after the release, is probably a little unfair.
Nocturnal Rites later albums have a much more harder feel and production quality is better.
However, I will try and drift back to 1999 and not be too influenced by future releases.
This was indeed the breakthrough album for them, pushing them into the Power Rock Metal spotlight.
The songs are well composed, but have a lightly produced raw feel about them.
It's a mixture of straight forward rock and power metal, reminiscence of, as other reviewers have alluded to, Iron Maiden and on the power metal side, bands such as Stratovarious and Silent Force.
I haven't listened to this for a while, but as I write and listen to the album, I now remember, that this is a strong offering, with no filler tracks.
If you like heavy rock with lead guitar solo's, you will enjoy this.
Although, the production is on the light side, it is certainly not over produced/manufactured like some of their later albums, which on this occasion, is a positive.
Every rock fan should own this.

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