Released: 2008, Dockyard 1/Sound Pollution
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Crystallion’s debut album was released in 2006 and was called A DARK ENCHANTED CRYSTAL NIGHT. Crystallion has played with acts like W.A.S.P, Running Wild and Brainstorm and the act is very inspired by the old temple myth which is also revealed in the title of this album. The band’s music has huge similarities with the music of Hammerfall, Freedom Call and old Helloween. The music is technical, complex and has some hard double bass drum play. Keyboards and fast guitar riffs lie at the top of the mix, in other words, this is nothing new but still OK.
The musicians are great and really know what they’re doing. The one thing that brings it all down is the singer who simply can’t sing in English. Add to that no variation, no vocal range and no charisma you will understand what I’m talking about. He is just pale and anonymous; in fact he is everything a lead singer not should be.
HATTIN contains 8 songs; one is an intro that starts off the album called “The Ambush” where a narrator tells the start of this theme/concept album. The album is one hour long so that means the songs are also quite long. The album evolves around the battle of Hattin which took place on July 4th 1187, and was the biggest military defeat of the crusaders. They lost a big part of the crusader states including the kingdom of Jerusalem to the Muslims and it was the beginning of the end.
I have nothing against the album besides the fact that I’m deadly tired of concept albums. HATTIN pretty much sounds like any other theme album in this genre, the choruses are catchy, there’s a lot of choirs backing up the weak singer and there’s also some really long instrumental parts. Just like every other album so to speak.
Crystallion lacks identity and the material feels a little too anonymous. HATTIN is plain and pale. To succeed in the business you have to have something out of the ordinary and that something is nothing that Crystallion owns.
Maybe fans of Hammerfall, Gamma Ray, Helloween or Freedom Call like this, I’m also a fan of a few of those bands but I’m not convinced. Some of the songs are a little bit better than the rest and those are “Wings Of Thunder”, “Vanishing Glory”, “Under Siege” and “The Battle – Onward” but that’s about it. My lasting impression is boring and pale.