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I have been waiting since about August of 2010 for this album and hell, am I ever excited. Cauldron are definitely my favorite out of these new traditional metal bands (though Holy Grail come quite close) and they did not disappoint me at all! This is even better than Chained to the Nite, something that I did not expect. This album still contains everything that Chained to the Nite did, the heavy guitar tone, the thick bass sound, the loads of melody (even more here) and yes, there's still loads of cheese in the lyrics but amazingly, it is done even better!
Jason's vocals haven't changed much but he uses much more power here. Where as on the last album his vocals could get a bit dull after a while and didn't seem like he was giving it his all, fixed it all up here. His bass playing here is top notch as well, just like always. The bass opening in Rapid City is very Motörhead influenced, punky speed metal stuff and it's the main song where his bass playing sticks out.
The guitar work is awesome, the guitar tone isn't as heavy and crunchy as on Chained to the Nite but it's still has a thick, cool tone. And as always, Ian doesn't take any time for warming up and kicks you in the ass from the first second in All or Nothing. The simplicity of that riff is really what makes it amazing. All the riffs here are flawless. Solo wise, Ian is a shredder. He shreds like a fucking beast (don't believe me? Listen to Unchained Assault) but still maintains to stay in the melodic area Cauldron are known for. One thing many shredders lack, he can actually play with feeling and emotion, not just random wank.
The drumming is awesome, Chris is a great drummer. I've been a fan of Aggressor for quite a while and I've always been a fan of his drumming style. Though it may be simple, he does it without flaw. Stays solid throughout the whole album.
The lyrics may seem actually a bit ...hmm.. "emotional", if you will. You might have been able to guess that if you looked at some of the song titles like Miss you to Death, Tears have Come... But that isn't at all a bad thing, no different than Chained up in Chains. In fact, Miss you to Death is probably my favorite song on this album alongside Queen of Fire. So, one might not exactly be into lyrics but if you listen to it with an open mind it shouldn't bother you at all. Anyone who dislikes this album because of the lyrics is well... dumb.
In conclusion, this album is mind blowing. This is really one of the most melodic albums I have ever heard and man do I ever love melodic metal. I recommend this to fans of 80's traditional and NWOBHM bands like Judas Priest, Anvil, Raven, fans of newer traditional bands like Enforcer, White Wizzard, Skull Fist and I won't lie, even fans of some of the more glam stuff like Mötley Crüe, Ratt and Dokken. Oh, and judging by the title of this review, Cauldron did NOT forget about chains!
Best tracks -
Queen of Fire
Miss you to Death
Rapid City / Unchained Assault
Weakest tracks -
Tears have Come
Taken by Desire
Frozen in Fire
^ Though, I wouldn't say any of the songs here are "weak".