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The Storyteller
Crossroad
April 2002
Released: 2001, No Fashion
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: JP

Oh man, now even the once proud death label No Fashion is dabbling in the wave of melodic euro metal bands currently saturating the planet. I don’t mean that in a negative fashion because I love the strength of the scene right now!



What a great CD! Produced by Fredrik Nordstrom we have a Swedish band that isn’t death or thrash! This is The Storytellers second release and as the band name implies it is a concept album, I believe the second part of a story actually. Tragically I do not have the full packaging so I cannot comment on the quality of the storyline, other than I like what I hear. This is one of those bands that is easy to review by saying they sound like a cross between Band “A” and Band “B” , but I will try to avoid that easy way out…



The Storyteller is classic speed influenced European metal. The drums are fast, the bass is fast, and many of the songs are very quick. But there is more to them than just speed. The intro “And The Legend Continues” is a nice, albeit conventional sweeping, epic style instrumental piece used to counterpoint the full out attack of the opening cut “The Unknown”. There are a number of other elements as well, neoclassical soloing, the occasional keyboard, and quite a nice undercurrent of a medieval style. It’s hard to pinpoint but it does add a needed dimension. The occasional use of flutes and so on give it real flair.



The production is fantastic as is expected from Studio Fredman, everything sounds crystal clear and the mix is great. The harmonized, male choral backup vocals are great, they really get pushed to the front of the mix when the time is needed. Vocalist doesn’t hit the really high notes but is smooth and maybe lacking in a little power occasionally relying on the backup vocals to take the chorus; which is fine. He sounds like Biff Byford in places especially in “The Secrets Revealed”.



I really liked the solos as well they are tasteful, not all out shred and the guitar style is great, it seems to me there will be one solo, another solo then harmonized twin lead soloing, which is always a favorite of mine.



What more can I say? Well...OK…I will succumb to temptation and compare them to other bands. This is a perfect cross between Hammerfall and Blind Guardian and it ain’t just me saying it either. Every time I hear this CD I like it even more, I am going to try and find the debut and a full copy of this one as well for my collection. You should do the same.
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Other reviews

» S/T
by Rick

» Crossroad
by JP


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