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A Hero For The World
West To East Pt. 1 - Frontier Vigilante
Released: 2017, Self Released
Interesting origins this one, with the band being a two-member Swedish/Philippines combination. Formed in 2012, WEST TO EAST PT.1 – FRONTIER VIGILANTE is the band’s second release, and from this point forward will be referred to as WTEFV. If you can get past the awkward album title, what is contained within are the bounciest and brightest melodies you would find on albums by Edguy, Avantasia, and Stratovarius to name a few. If you like your power metal bright and happy, then this is an album worth exploring.
The ambition is evident at first glance, with album art provided by Jobert Mello, whose work has also graced the covers of bands like Sabaton and Primal Fear. Jacob Kaasgaard has written the music and lyrics save for one song, while handling main vocal duties, guitars, keyboards and drums. Kassgaard is in possession of the quintessential power metal voice, recalling Michael Kiske, and Tobias Sammet with his range and timbre. Female backing vocals are provided by Louie Ryan. WTEFV is a concept album, inspired by legends of the wild west. It is the first of a planned trilogy, and at 15 songs promises to be a sweeping endeavor.
“A Hero For The World” opens the festivities with major key melodies and precision riffing that rivals Dragonforce. The album progresses along those lines, with “San Fernando” being a speedster featuring one of the many festival sing-along choruses on the album. Not everything is speedy though, as “Out Where The West Begins” is mostly acoustic and “Cheyenne” actually has a bit of a slower chug with a few darker, minor melodies. Seriously though, this is probably one of the happiest albums I have ever heard, the cloyingly sweet melodies following on the heels of one after the other, with a notable lack of darker and more menacing fare. Add to that the epic length and various cinematic excursions and it becomes a lot to absorb.
Overall though, credit given for the meticulous production and ambitious execution in all phases. This is going to be cheesy to some, but if cheerful and sparkling is your preference, then WTEFV will more than fill the gap. With two more albums in this story to go, the band has made sure that this first one will sustain you until the planned 2018 release of part two. Recommended for fans of Dragonforce, Edguy, and Emerald Sun.
1. A Hero Returns
2. Into The Wild West: Premonition (Somewhere Out There)
3. Gold Of Klondike
4. San Fernando
5. Out Where The West Begins
8. The Saloon of Death and Dance
9. Outlaw in the Wild West
10. One, Two, Ready, Kill!
11. Unforgiven in Rio Bravo
12. The Other Side
14. Into The Fire
15. Somewhere out There
Jacob Kaasgaard (SWEDEN) (Lead and Backing Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Drums & Percussion, Symphonic Instruments)
Louie Ryan (PHILIPPINES) (Female Vocals)
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