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October 2001
Released: 2001, Independent
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: Rick

Every month I get demos from different bands which range from great to garbage. Needless to say that some of the garbage doesn’t even make it into the pages of cause it is better for those bands to go back and work on their music instead of being slagged. Well Thunderstone doesn’t fall into that category at all. I got this 5 song demo a few weeks ago and had listened to it off and on for that time and have some to the conclusion that these guys will soon be getting a much bigger audience because they are playing the brand of melodic powermetal that is popular right now and damn these guys do it right. From Finland, Thunderstone was formed in 2000 by guitar player Nino Laurenne. The lineup consists of Laurenne on guitar, Titus Hjelm: bass, Mirka Rantanen; drums, Pasi Rantanen: vocals and Kari Tornack: keyboards.

The demo is only 5 songs so I would be worried if any of them were below part but each tune is a good song in its own right. "Me, My Enemy" kicks off the disc with some vaguely Stratovarius inspired melodies. This song got me hooked right away and I was hoping that the rest of the disc was going to be this good. Thunderstone doesn’t repeat itself and shows that on the second track "World’s Cry" slows things down to a mid temp pace with a song that has a more 80s feel to it and shows that the band can do more than flat out speed/powermetal. It is on "Let The Demons Free" that Thunderstone goes into full powermetal mode with a double bass ripping track. Rantanen gets to really test his vocals chops on this one and he does a great job. "Spread Your Wings" closes out the Cd . This is one awesome ballad. I know that many metalheads don’t like ballads but I will have to be put in the "ballads when done right are cool!" category. And this track is done right.

Thunderstone certainly surprised me with this release. As with most demos the packaging is not the most eye catching but as the old adage goes, you can’t always judge a book by its cover. Glad I didn’t judge this one by its plain purple cover cause inside its pure gold. Hopefully these guys can carry their momentum through to a full length. If they can they could be atop the metal heap with their country men Sonata Arctica and Stratovarius.

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