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Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Reviews: Sixx A.M, Symfonia, Eden's Curse

Sixx A.M: This Is Gonna Hurt (Eleven Seven)

Due to his major input into Motley Crue you would expect this album to sound like a mixture of the Crue and guitarist DJ Ashba's day job G'N'R. However what we get with this album is a truly modern rock record with some orchestral flourishes. These are supplied by singer/producer/multi-instrumentalist James Michael who adds the strings, keys and layered production that he has used on the previous Meat Loaf album, to this collection as well as lending his incredible voice to it as well. Like with all albums with Sixx's involvement it's the songs that stand out. They are rocking, reflective and beautiful. The opener This Is Gonna Hurt is a pulsing industrial sounding track that gives way to the modern Life Is Beautiful that sounds almost like Shinedown and Daughtry. Live Forever has a Muse-like quality and Skin and Smile  are the lighter waving ballads that will fill any arena. Sixx A.M have surpassed themselves on this album. It is better than The Heroin Diaries albeit not by much but it is a lot better than the last Motley Crue album. If you’re a fan of any of the members other projects you know how good this album is, if you’re not then I urge you to buy this album and become a fan. 8/10

Symfonia: In Paradisum (Edel)

Timmo Tolkki - those two words should put joy into the hearts of any power metal fan. Tolkki is the founding member and guitarist of Stratovarius. Right up until 2009 Tolkki was the main creative influence of the band until he left to follow his own pursuits. After a few badly received albums and a disastrous classical project Tolkki is back doing what he is very good at. Symfonia are somewhat of a super group as it features former Angra singer Andre Matos, keyboard virtuoso Mikko Harkin and former Helloween drummer Uli Kusch. Tolkki has written some of his best material in years for this album and the way him and Matos work together is fantastic. There are galloping rhythms, soaring solos and keening keys all of which are Tolkki trademarks. This album ranks with the new Stratovarius album as among the best power metal releases in years. If this is your idea of heaven then buy In Paradisum if this sounds like hell then best stay clear. For those of us still here let's hope this super group delivers live as well as they do on record. 8/10

Eden's Curse: Trinity (AFM)

Eden's Curse are a classic metal band that are based in England but have members from all over the globe. They are the brain-child of vocalist Michael Eden and bassist Paul Logue. In terms of style they have a melodic metal edge on a par with Maiden and Dio (even going as far as covering Rock And Roll Children as a bonus track). The band are tight precise and play with a real energy complimenting the unique voice of Eden, his nearest comparison would be James La Brie of Dream Theater who features as a guest vocalist on the album, dueting with Eden on No Holy Man which is one of the strongest tracks on the album. Andi Deris of Helloween also guests on a track but none of these high profile guests detract from the focus being on the band itself. After to overlooked but brilliant albums Eden's Curse have arrived. Get ready to be cursed! 9/10  

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