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Twilight Guardians are a metal band from Finland, standing behind their Finnish brothers, Thunderstone, Stratovarius and Sonata Arctica. Not as popular as those bands mentioned, Twilight Guardians have chugged along in the background since their debut CD in 2000. Fast forward to 2007 and now this band has released their 4th full-length CD, entitled ‘Ghost Reborn’.
Going by previous reviews around the world wide web, Twilight Guardians are known to be power metal with melodic influences. Now, that may be the case in previous CDs, but on ‘Ghost Reborn’ I hear nothing that is power metal. All I hear is straight out melodic metal. 2 bands which I feel sound similar to Twilight Guardians on this release, include Gaia Epicus and Magnitude 9. All of the tracks on ‘Ghost reborn’ are short and never really make it out of a mid-paced tempo, while some may be faster than others. The songs on this CD are so short, that the whole CD equals just 35 minutes, which I feel is far too short and a real waste. The mid-paced thing is something I actually don’t mind and I presume that is what they are most comfortable with.
Despite all that, the music from this CD is quite good. I like the voice of vocalist Vesa Virtanen. It’s rather unique and suites their melodic metal style. His voice is a tad lower than your typical melodic metal band, but it is also non-threatening and nice to listen to. The band has a nice collection of tracks, which all seem to follow the same core structure, but all can still be differentiated from one another. Some tracks have a very nice use of keyboards, not over doing it, while others infuse a short solo here and there. It’s nothing new and the entire CD is nothing I haven’t heard before.
As for the songs, I feel that there are no fillers at all and every song is placed nicely within the structure. I would have liked Twilight Guardians to have extended some of their tracks time-wise, but that is just my own personal gripe. Although the songs are catchy, entertaining and hold my interest, I never really feel like I want to replay any of them, strange it seems, but I guess overall, the tracks are just consistent and nothing more. Picking 2 songs which stand at the top of the ‘better’ list would be “The weight” and “Out of our hands”, while “Glasschains”, “Rainbow’s gold” and “Walk this line” are also quite good.
In all, ‘Ghost Reborn’ is decent, but falls quite short on anything spectacular. If Twilight Guardians want to stand side by side with their Finnish metal brothers, they really need to expand themselves and possibly release a CD that could be somewhat different to what they are doing currently. Anyone who is a fan of melodic metal will enjoy this, but also knowing that none of the tracks are any quicker than a mid-paced level and that the CD just really chugs along until it’s over.
Originally written for www.metalcdratings.com
Ghost Reborn has a very strong opening, the track "Glasschains". It really makes you want to keep listening, even though its lyrics are very odd. And you'll be well rewarded for waiting through Track 1. "Rainbow's Gold" (Track 2) is perhaps the strongest track on the CD, with lyrics that actually seem to make some sense.
The album fails to live up to tracks 1 and 2 with tracks 3-5, "Wild Bite", "The Game" and "Bring It On". They are not bad tracks, they just lack sense. For example, "The Game" has no real meaning in its lyrics, switching from conversation to some sort of gibberish about a game ("Welcome to this game, rules on the screen every day.") It all gets better with track 6, "Walk This Line", which has a great solo and a nice backing choir.
The remaining four tracks are showing Twilight Guardians as they truly are: a band with great instrumental skill but a fairly poor songwriter. "The Weight" barely even sounds like metal, though "This Blood" is a decent track, with great lyrics (for a change) and a nice riff. "Fallen Lamb" is very weak, even weaker than "Bring It On" and "The Weight". The album closes well with "Out Of Our Hands", a strong song, perhaps, lyrically, the best on the CD.
If you like long guitar solos, buy this record. If you're looking for minute-long blast beats, this is not your CD. This album was a lot worse than the band's second and third albums, Wasteland and Sintrade respectively, but its good songs will keep you happy for a long time.