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I Am God
Released: 2016, Own
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Do you remember when Power Metal was fun? When it was fresh and new? Seems like a long time ago now. Gamma Ray's Somewhere out in Space was released almost 20 years ago. Battle Beast are giving us power metal fans hope with a new album and massive tour in 2017 and Hammerfall are rejuvenated. For better or for worse Amaranthe have updated the Power Metal formula while adding more and more pop into the mix. Even Stradivarius took note, adding Amaranthe influences to their Nemesis album in 2013.
Onto Fraser Edwards. He is a technical metal guitarist based in Scotland. His day job is in Scottish Power Metal band Ascension and is also a top notch producer. He has been working on this album for nine years and finally it is released. The album cover, a man with a guitar on his back in a futuristic city looks fantastic. Lots of blue and the effect of artificial light. Reminiscent of Iron Maiden's Somewhere in Time album, a vinyl version would be immense, especially as a gatefold. There is just something so amazing, so escapist about the art work. Brilliant.
I was cycling while listening to this and when it first started I almost fell off my bike as I was so stunned by it. Imagine all the best parts of Power Metal, the best parts of Dragonforce with a healthy dollop of Amaranthe pop sensibility. The songs hit the sweet spot so many times I lost count. There are key changes in all the right parts,
especially first track Alone when repeating the chorus at the end. Some may not like the unending amount of happiness and positivity, even more than a typical Freedom Call album.
The production is top notch with perfect timing, perfect singing and perfect playing. Maybe too perfect for some people, but computers are here to stay, we can't get rid of them now. Judas Priest were criticized for adding synths to the Turbo album back in 1986. This is nothing compared to the effects on the guitar on these tracks. I think it is a good thing. Too many bands are trying the retro thing and becoming meat and potatoes music. Some ambition with the sounds can be good.
The music is amazing but I have to knock half a mark off as it needed a little bit more variation. While listening through the album I started to remember a video game from back in the day. When I was young I had a Sega Dreamcast with Sonic Adventure. It reminded me of the music from that game. Very Japanese video game rock. With the new Final Fantasy being based nowadays I can imagine the heroes fighting to the soundtrack of Fraser Edwards.
So if you want your music to make you feel confident, positive, happy and forward thinking. Fraser Edwards's "I AM GOD" is for you.
2) Custom Built
3) Mentallist Brigade
4) Twelve Variations
5) So Many People
7) I am God
8) Geography of Time
9) God Complex
10) Dawn of the Shred
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