Released: 2007, Frontiers Records/Zink Music
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Now is the time to unleash the second battle between Russell Allen and Jorn Lande. The debut came out in 2005 with the apt name THE BATTLE. While the debut didn’t impress me all the way, THE REVENGE certainly does. The project’s main musical target is still harder progressive hard rock/metal with an epic and majestic production. Sometimes the music reminds me of Last Tribe (Karlsson’s old band) and Masterplan, but with more keyboards.
The guitar player and producer Magnus Karlsson is yet again involved in the project. The project should definitely get credit for landing such a brilliant musician and producer. Besides playing guitar, he also plays the bass and keyboards this time. It’s about time Karlsson was recognized for his great talents. Drummer Jamie Salazar also appears again and he is just as solid and secure as ever. Just as on the previous album, Karlsson wrote all of the material and it feels like he’s put in even more time and effort this time. All of the 12 songs are extremely solid and I think this is the strongest material Karlsson has ever written.
A few of the brilliant songs that rise above the rest are “The Revenge”, “Obsessed”, “Just a Dream”, and “Her Spell”. Those are 4 songs which truly include the essence of what melodic hard rock/metal music is all about. If you’re a fan of faster melodic metal just tune into “Victory”, “Will you Follow”, and “Wake Up Call”. Normally I’m not a fan of ballads, but “Master of Sorrow”, “Gone too Far”, and “When Time Doesn’t Heal” are all great ballads where Lande shows off quite a bit. The production by Karlsson and the mixing by Dennis Ward (Pink Cream 69, Angra, Place Vendome) are even harder, edgier, and sharper this time.
Frontiers Records continues to release high-quality albums and artists; Allen/Lande is a great example of the label’s high class. This is so damn good I hardly know what more to say other than buy it, and do it fast.