Catchy Tunes by Kupiainen & co, well recommeded,
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This review is from: Nemesis (MP3 Download)
I chose this rating, as I think 4stars is just a bit too low and I cannot choose 4.5. Many of the songs by M, Kupiainen & Timo Kotipelto are very catchy, e.g. Abandon, Unbreakable, Stand My Ground and the contributions by Porra and Johansson give a subtly different flavour to the whole album, especially in terms of melodies and rhythm. For example, the rhythms of Castles in the AIr and Dragons (by Johansson) give a sense of his old days with Yngwie Malmsteen & co, yet have a distinctly Stratovarius melody, reminding me of songs like A Million Lightyears Away and Soul of A Vagabond, as well as Why are we Here (the former two by the ex-member/composer TImo Tolkki).
On the whole, however, the arrival by Kupiainen and the new drummer Rolf Pilve has very clearly given the band a new sense of direction and a fresh start, and after the Elysium "experiment", which in my opinion was good (though not as catchy and classic Strato as Polaris for insinatce).
I thoroughly recommend the Album to Power Metal fans of bands like Helloween, Gamma Ray, Sonata Arctica, Hammerfall, Blin Guardian, etc. Well worth the buy, and I have not even heard the bonus tracks yet!