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These guys have the wrong idea about power metal - 24%

The_Ghoul, April 29th, 2009

If this doesn't annoy the crap out of you, then you either this is the only power metal you've heard, thus all the tired cliche's and misconceptions seem novel to you, or this is the only Dragonforce you've heard, thus all the tired cliche's and misconceptions seem novel to you.

But take it from me, a person who listens to way too much power metal for his own good, that Dragonforce, while they might be the fastest power metal has to offer, are nowhere near the best it has to offer. This is full of misconceptions, and the most prominent one is that the point of power metal is to be as fast as possible. C'mon, guys, that's not even the point of speed metal, and speed metal has "speed" in the name. The second misconception is that speed is the ends, not the means, and that speed should be achieved at any cost. Well, this means they speed up the guitars via the almighty computer and sacrifice anything but the most simple and neanderthal of melodies. Any sort of coherence is lost and buried under the glob of speedy sounds.

I thought I would like this as music for breaking speed limits whilst driving, but sadly enough that's not even the case. It's fast, to be sure, but artificially fast. It's not ennervating because the speed just doesn't sound like it's any sort of achievement, and I just cant pound my fist like I do when I put on Grave Digger or olskool Blind Guardian. There's no passion, no fury, just a random stream of notes akin to television static.

And of course I can't get over how terrible and artificial Zippy Theart's singing is. I would honestly add 20 or so more points to the score if their sister band Power Quest's singer, Alessio Garavallo, was singing. He has passion, he has power, and Zippy has neither. It's the same lines, over and over again, delivered in a generic, nasally, format. It gets old, FAST, and after it got old I found I couldn't stand listening to his voice.

While their schtick was tolerable over their first couple albums because they kept their excesses in check (kind of) and they were still new and novel, by this time they had been reduced to a cliche', writing the same song over and over again and sticking in a token ballad, solely for the purpose, it seems, of being able to claim that they're not 100% about speed. I am finding that every time I write a Dragonforce review, I'm writing the same review, and that's because every time I listen to Dragonforce, I'm listening to the same album, just rearranged and with different titles.

And speaking of titles, Dragonforce have got to have THE stupidest song titles and lyrics. Ever. It even beats out the vacuous satan worship of your average swedish norsecore band. When you listen to the lyrics, as it is with the music, you won't remember a single thing except for the first couple lines. It just doesn't mean a goddamn thing. It's not bad, so much as it's empty. And it seems with every new album, the sound is more compressed, digitally altered, and soulless than before. Metal is supposed to be about passion, not just extremity, and Dragonforce are severely lacking in the passion department.