Released: 2008, Metal Heaven/Border Music
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Ex-Freedom Call bassist player Ilker Ersin is the main man behind Powerworld. Other musicians he’s brought along include Barish Kepic from Jaded Heart on guitar, Jurgen Lucas from At Vance on drums and his old Freedom Call colleague Nils Neumann on keyboards. The lead vocals are handled by a new young talent who’s only 23 years old named Steffen Brunner. Powerworld was formed in 2005 but it took a year before Ersin had the members and line-up he wanted.
Powerworld’s music is best described as catchy radio-friendly keyboard-based melodic hard rock that’s easy to sing along with. Musical similarities can be found with Ersin’s old act Freedom Call and other catchy German melodic metal acts. I can bet that fans of Freedom Call will love Powerworld; no doubt about that.
The musicians are really skilled and ambitious; Ersin and Lucas are really solid and Kepic has an edgy, heavy guitar style that impresses on lead and rhythm guitar. Steffen Brunner is one of the new stars in the melodic metal scene when it comes to lead vocals. He delivers his parts with strength and confidence and he has a real future in the business if he keeps with it.
One of the 12 songs on this debut is a cover of the old Cutting Crew song “I Died in Your Arms”. Even though many of the songs are quite good with solid harmonies and catchy choruses, it feels like there are missing elements. Many of the songs are weak, thin, un-inspired and generic. Despite the talented musicians, the songs aren’t solid enough to do the band justice. There are a few songs that stand out a bit: “Creatures”, “Fight Fire with Fire”, “I Reach the Light” and “Breaking the Silence”. The cover of “I Died in Your Arms” is actually really solid and they did a great job turning it into a metal song. 5 good songs are unfortunately not enough to save the album. When it comes to the production I really have nothing to note. Lead vocals and keyboards share the biggest space in the mix and a proper choir (featuring Olli Hartmann) backs up Brunner.
Maybe Powerworld’s debut album will appeal to you if you’re into Freedom Call and such acts, but I think the album is a little weak and not edgy enough to do the brilliant musicians and singer justice. This self-titled disc doesn’t convince me, but maybe the next album will. I’m all ears.