Released: 2002, Nuclear Blast
Man how fast do things happen in the metal world. It was only about 8 months ago that I reviewed Thunderstone’s debut demo. At the time I wondered why these guys weren’t signed to a label. Well not long after that demo was released the group was snapped up by Nuclear Blast. A smart move if I do say so myself. The band was formed in early 2000 by guitarist Nino Laurenne and now consists of Titus Hjelm: bass, Kari Tornack: keyboards, Pasi Rantanen: vocals, Laurenne: guitars and Mirka “Leka” Rantanen: drums. Soon after the band Nuclear Blast heard the bands demo in the fall they rushed Thunderstone into the studio to begin recording in January. They rerecorded the 5 songs from their demo and added 5 new songs to create on e great piece of melodic powermetal.
The Cd kicks off with “Let The Demons Free”. This is one of the strongest songs on the (as it was the demo) and is followed by the excellent new track “Virus”. Right away I realize that the guys didn’t blow all their creativity on the demo. Other great new tracks include “Will to Power”, a mid tempo track that would qualify as the epic piece among the bunch clocking in at 8:33, “Weak”, an emotional balled that fits the band perfectly and the blistering “Like Father, Like Son” which brings to mind countrymen Sonata Arctica and Stratovarius. Not to be forgotten are the exceptional ballad “Spread My Wings” and last but not least the discs best track in my opinion “Me, My Enemy”.
Nuclear Blast seem to have a winner on their hands with Thunderstone. There might be a lot of melodic metal bands coming out right now but most come nowhere near the quality of Thunderstone. This disc literally has no bad songs on it. The production is a tiny bit to slick for my tastes but not overly so and really adds a different quality to songs like “World’s Cry” and “Voice in a Dream”. Thunderstone have succeed in creating a CD that will elevate them to the top of the already crowded melodic metal genre. Check them out at http://www.thunderstone.org