Released: 2011, SG Records
Italy continues to be the fertile breeding ground for power metal, and Dream of Illusion is another band to add to the list. Formed in 2003 in Legnago Italy, the original lineup featured a female vocalist before settling on the current lineup. The band has signed with SG Records and just released the full length album DECADENCE. Influenced by bands such as Guns N Roses, Deep Purple, and AC/DC, the band manages to sound like none of their influences, preferring a sound closer to Helloween and American power metal rather than their Italian band mates.
Surprisingly and refreshingly, Dream of Illusion eschews keyboards in favor of letting the guitar and drums carry the songs. After a brief instrumental intro, “The Crow” kicks things off with a harmonized riff and a song that features James Labrie type vocals and a Germanic power metal approach to the guitar. “Rocker Warrior” however, starts off with a detuned intro more reminiscent of Slave To The Grind era Skid Row and reveals singer Francesco "Frank" Valentini ‘s rather pronounced Italian accent (Rocker Warrior is an awkward title as well). English deficiencies, aside this is not your proto-Italian power metal. You will hear no Labyrinth or Rhapsody of Fire influences , but instead more direct and immediate songs without the symphonic elements. The guitar tandem absolutely shreds and as expected the drums propel the frenetic pace forward as the track “Mistery” (more English mangling) reveals.
Track for track, this is impressive metal. Production, melodies, riffs are all spot on and the songs are well-constructed. The band has fused together a nice combination of American power metal and Germanic power metal, with nods to Riot, Jag Panzer, and Helloween. Minor but annoying flaws are the lack of English proficiency and the hilariously basic song titles like “Rocker Warrior”, “Born To Rock”, and “Back To The Evil Age”, problems that could easily have been solved by letting a native English speaker do some editing or at the very least, suggest some better titles. None of these small issues detract from what is, in sum, a riveting and enjoyable headbang from start to finish. This is highly recommended for fans of power metal, particularly of the keyboard-less kind.