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On disc: Phantom-X

Storm Riders - Claudia Ehrhardt - 7 stars
The Opera Of The Phantom - Lars Bj°rn - 4 stars

The Opera Of The Phantom

The Opera Of The Phantom
(Pure Steel Records - 2012)

When a band makes a concept album it's always exciting to see what subject they choose to bring in focus. Phantom X continue on their 4th record a frame of the Phantom, and this time the name is The Opera Of The Phantom. Kevin Goocher sings with a voice that could best be labeled as questionable, then I have not offended him. Their songs are true to the purpose, theatre rock, and metal without too many uplifting moments. However Holy Hell gives a decent proof of the bands attitude to their metal with great rhythm heavy metal, but this is not nearly enough to leave a solid impression when everything else is so standard that it gives more meaning to stick your tongue out of the window to get some cool fresh air. Goocher and co. please shape up and make good heavy metal next time.

4 stars

Lars Bj°rn


Storm Riders

Storm Riders
(Mausoleum Records - 2006)

Phantom-X was started as a cover band by Omen singer Kevin Goocher, but within a year they left the covers behind and released their debut album Rise Of The Pahntoms with their own works. Now they come over the metal fans with Storm Riders.
You can hear the storm coming... Thunder... And it sounds like the storm is growling something. Then the band takes over and starts with the fast title track Storm Riders. A treat for every fan of heavy US metal, even if the band tries to present a modern version of US metal with reminiscences to their heroes. So they use breaks and speed changes and so cross the borders to power metal with progressive elements. The following Join The Revolution is a groovy metal track which will find its way to metal parties, not a typical neck breaker, but groovy and catchy. With Everspell they slow down - for a few moments. Singer Kevin Goocher is a decent singer, but with his experience he knows to make his voice shine through the way of using his 'instrument'.
With Texas Death Squad the four-some are giving honor to Mot÷rhead, even if it ain't a Mot÷rhead clone you can hear clearly the inspiration for this one. A bit Sabbath-ish it gets with A Dark Divinity, but its always well woven into their songs. Different is Ancient Anthem which is an acoustic ballad where influences aren't so obvious. Goocher is doing a good job, but here his limited vocal range shows. But still a highlight. At 13th Hour a bit Savatage shines through...
I can recommend this album to all metal fans who would name bands like Judas Priest, Savatage, Mot÷rhead, Omen, etc. as their favorites. In comparison with their debut Storm Riders is on a high level, but next time they should reduce the reminiscences to their heroes and show more uniqueness.

7 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


           © 2008-2013 by Claudia Ehrhardt • E-Mail:

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