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Hmm, nice and nice. - 81%

Egregius, October 19th, 2003

Jag Panzer seem to know how to conjure up an enjoyable slab of power metal judging by this album. Nice digipack packaging as well. The music reminds a bit of Iron Maiden in some places, mainly with the occasional use of slightly gallopy-esque riffs, in other places has it's own face in the blend of bassy(bouncy?) riffs that remind of Iced Earth, and highly melodical guitar-lines with sometimes drawn out notes as well.

First track opens well, with some original riffs, after which the pace picks up a little and the singer joins in with nice drawn out vocal lines; it creates an interesting effect in combination with the seemingly slightly more up-tempo riffs. But then the refrain comes in, and gets repeated twice, which will happen more in this song. And I'm not against repeating refrains, but I'm not a big fan of it either unless it's a really interesting refrain.
I guess this is a kind of hit-or-mis scenario, if the song really sticks to you, you can't get enough of the refrain, if not, it's slightly repetitive. The difference between me and the other reviewers probably is that I'm not a powermetal-fan first. :)

The same can probably be said about the main guitar-riff of 'Unworthy'. It's a nice and decent riff, that has a leading role in the song. If you're not into this sort of thing, the repetition will annoy you just slightly, but if you like, you'll love. And truth be told, the riff has a slightly epic quality to it, especially with the church-esque choirs following it, and it is fitting to the song's theme of casting away the old unworthy dreams and being reborn.

The highlights of the album probably are the middle songs, The Scarlet Letter, and Choir of Tears. Both are very powerfull songs with a lot of drive behind them, and especially Scarlet Letter has a catchy refrain and a certain intensity to it.

The albums major flaw would be that after the first 6 tracks, the remainder becomes slightly predictable in structure. Not that they re-use riffs, but nonetheless they become less surprising. Not that it will matter to the fans, they'll love it all nonetheless; it's just that this album is less recommended to casual powermetal listeners, although it's quite different from the European (Italian) brand of powermetal. The songs have momentum, but all almost all equally so. The singer has a great range, and the riffs are diverse (..and very nice to be honest), but the riff-diversity won't be enough to make someone out of the genre a fan I'm afraid. That said, it could be countered by saying this album will appeal to Iced Earth and Iron Maiden fans alike with it's sound.

And all in all, Jag Panzer do what they do very decently: 81.