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This is an interesting review to write because the bands previous release Hellfire Club marked a clear departure in style and I was curious what it might lead to. I didn’t really approve of the bands new direction but I couldn’t help but be intrigued since the band is pretty big and did put out some decent albums in the past. ‘Lavatory Love Machine’ from last year’s Hellfire Club, defines this new direction, namely, a happier, more hard rock oriented sound. The tone is humorous and playful, and (annoyingly) over-the-top, which wasn’t the case in the past. Suspicions confirmed, Rocket Ride is what I expected, and yet another nail in the band’s coffin, at least within the metal community; worldwide they’ll probably break some sales record.
At this point in my review, it may not come as a surprise that I’m no fan of the new Edguy. Personal notions aside, this is still well-written, well-played and well-produced music and to their credit, Edguy is as consistent as ever, but make no mistake; pure metal this is not. Or to put it in other words: this music has no balls. If you’re a fan of hard rock or melodic rock you should be pleased with Rocket Ride though, as Edguy has honed their songwriting over the years to near “perfection”. What i mean by this is that it's good music for what it is - I just don't like what it is.
The best songs are probably the first three. Sacrifice is an energetic, memorable song featuring some dynamic song writing. The song is fast, but the band finds room for slow, clear vocal passages and such things. Some of the best lead guitar can be found here as well. Up until 2:17 or so the song is pretty good, but then Sammet & co comes in and ruins everything with one of those super happy and totally gay choruses the band (so tragically!) became famous for with Hellfire Club.
The second song, the title song, is a pretty typical and simple power metal song from the German school of metal. It gives us some much needed relief because it has some of the least gay choruses (but gay they are nonetheless). So, what we have is a solid main-riff, fast pace and flowing song writing - a pretty decent song in other words. Next is ‘Wasted Time’, which is one of the best songs on the album. It’s a typical, “new-Edguy” song with (too?) perfect arrangements, flowing and melodic song writing. The intro is really fantastic and sets the mood for the song. It’s a good song, no complaints here, but fucking hell, enough with the happy vibes already!
It’s all downhill from here as the hard rock elements become clearer and the band gets increasingly over-the-top. At times, the band is unbearable; Superheroes, among other songs, is so annoyingly happy and ridiculously catchy (yes there is such a thing) it makes me want to take a chokehold on Tobias Sammet and scream ‘SHUT THE FUCK UP!’ until my lungs collapse. Not surprisingly, you can also find what has to be worst Edguy song ever in ‘Trinidad’. Yes, that’s a cat meowing in the background. It’s a silly, silly song, which is actually an accurate description of the album overall as well.
It would be a cliché to say that the band has turned commercial, but it’s true that Edguy has become too much of a trivial affair to deserve any respect or attention. With Rocket Ride, the band has finally earned its infamous nickname “Edgay”.