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Astral Doors
Jerusalem
February 2012
Released: 2011, Metalville
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team

Since their formation in 2002, Swedish metallers Astral Doors have been creating some serious waves in the music industry. Admired by many power metal fans playing with the likes of Blind Guardian in 2006 and recording master piece records such as Requiem of Time it has certainly been an interesting decade for Astral Doors.



Fast forward to the present and their latest offering Jerusalem is jam packed with enough solo’s and sing along moments to satisfy their ever-loyal fan base as well as delivering enough heavy metal and brutality to make this a full grown beast of a record.



Opening with ‘Seventh Crusade’, the clean vocals, hard rock riffs and keyboard layers will allure the ears of even the most open minded of any listeners. Building into a guitar solo and backing vocals a strong unifying vibe is reflected in their song writing skills.



‘With A Strangers Eye’ is an extension of these aforementioned qualities. Upbeat and with a powerful chorus the song charges both to and beyond the horizon, with plenty of finger tapping moments to get air guitarists excited.A personal standout track is ‘Pearl Harbour’. The riff lead intro, conjured with pitch harmonics and guitar melodies serve as a great backdrop to Nils Patrik Johansson’s soaring vocals.



The spoken words during the song also provide an interesting dimension to this pro war anthem, a victorious and well crafted piece of music in itself.‘Lost Crucifix’, with its melodic intro and crisp clean vocals breaks into a bombardment of riffs, drums and a strong symphonic undercurrent that weaves in and out consistently, leaving enough room for a slight progressive flirtation. What is clear is that they have plenty of creative juices, flowing in their veins.



Meanwhile, ‘The Battle of Jacob’s Ford’ continues the strong theme of war with “March were going out to War”, if there was ever a song that should be met by an arena of live fans raising their fists skyward it would be this.



Picking up the pace, ‘Operation Freedom’ is perhaps the fastest and most adrenaline pumping track found on this offering. Speedy drumming, charging guitars along with finger tapping fretwork and lyrics to further colour the battlefields found in their music.



Closing off with ‘Jerusalem’, the choir led intro provide an interesting depth as the guitars and drums pummel their way through this epic closure to an epic album.



Final word, Astral Doors has released another bench mark record to their already impressive discography. With a strong emphasis upon story telling as well as well as a musical ride of depths, and stratosphere heights they have carved a truly masterful narrative.



Review by Ben Spencer
Track Listing

1. Seventh Crusade
2. With A Stranger’s Eye
3. Child Of Rock ‘N’ Roll
4. Pearl Harbour
5. Lost Crucifix
6. Babylon Rise
7. Suicide Rime
8. The Battle of Jacobs Ford
9. Operation Freedom
10. The Day After Yesterday
11. Jerusalem

Lineup

Nils Patrik Johansson (Vocals)
Joachim Nordlund (Guitar)
Joakim Roberg (Organ/keys)
Ulf Lagerstoem (Bass)
Johan Lindstedt (Drums)


Next review: » Astral Doors - Jerusalem
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