Demons and Wizards, the power metal supergroup featuring Hansi Kursch and Jon Schaffer, of Blind Guardian and Iced Earth respectively, return with their first album in 15 years. And boy does it kick some serious ass.
“Diabolic,” is the opening song on the record. A song that mixes various elements together, to produce a haunting cacophony. Hansi’s vocals simply soar through and deliver perfection, whilst Jon sounds as tight as ever on the guitar. One gets the impression that this is narrating the story of the Devil and his ascent and the descent from heaven. A strong opener.
“Invincible,” takes on a slower tone. Moving together different images and melodies together. There’s a sense of mid 1990s Blind Guardian on the guitars and the vocals. A picture of darkness and slowly moving rot is brought to mind as the song progresses.
“Wolves In Winter,” assaults the senses. The riffs are powerful, the vocals soar and the song is simply perfection mixed together. As everything progresses, the listener is treated to the story of the world, and how it is being mixed together and slowly destroyed. At least that’s this reviewer’s interpretation.
“Final Warning,” slowly builds into a monster of a song. Haunting melodies bewitch the listener whilst the vocals croon in and out, and bring things together to take the listener on a great journey. As the song gets heavier, the tonality changes until everything comes together in one mighty roar.
“Timeless Spirit,” much like “Fiddler On The Green,” from the band’s debut album, is all about the journey. Starting off with an acoustic melody, it croons into being and delivers something that come damn near close to perfection. As it steadily builds into a heavier outpouring one sees the effort and the power that the band has put into the song. This will be a song that truly gets the crowd singing, when performed live.
“Dark Side of Her Majesty,” once more tells a story. Weaving together competing elements, it shifts the narrative through into something new and intriguing. Keeping the spirit going, the jagged and galloping melodies of the riffs gets the listener hooked, whilst the vocals truly deliver on the promise of the song.
“Midas Disease,” has an old school rock feel. The song narrates the greed within society, and how it is slowly making everything rot around it. Playing on the illusions of old King Midas, was a smart thing to do, and surely gives the impression of a sleazy businessman singing the song.
“New Dawn,” gets reflective. The guitar melodies bring out some interesting tonal changes, and the vocals are once again near perfection.
“Universal Truth,” is anthemic. Starting off slow, it slowly gets heavier and brings together some fascinating twists and changes, which develop an interesting perspective for all involved.
“Split,” is a machine gun like song, that flies through the barriers of time, and hits the listener right where it matters. In the gut.
“Children of Cain,” is simply epic. The song contains multiple elements that make it truly stand out. Quality melodies, strong vocal lines, and a guitar tone that is to die for. The narrative within the song is perfectly fit for the theme of the album.
If you’re a fan of metal, do yourself a favour and get this album when it is released on 21st February via Century Media.