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The World Needs a Mesmerist - 90%

bayern, July 11th, 2018

And it gets whole five ones in the face of these German troubadours here; yeah, when the whole world wishes something, it’s easy to come true, you see… So our hypnotists… sorry, mesmerists went straight for the audience’s subconscious with their first instalment, the “Feel the Subconscious” demo, a pretty promising 4-tracker that showed their predilections towards the 80’s American metal scene with rowdy power/speedy battle hymns echoing heroes like Attacker, Helstar, and Omen.

The band continued releasing demos sporadically, and another one (“Stranger”) arrived four years later with four new pieces modelled after the initially chosen style, with the four songs from the debut demo added as well. What caused the huge gap between this last showing and the album reviewed here remains unclear, but the guys eventually managed to put themselves on the official release map with this handsome tribute to all things old school.

The approach has been enriched with both more aggressive thrashy and more complex progressive nuances, the final package coming close to being mesmerizing indeed with the impetuous gallops of "Darkness" enrapturing everyone who lost his/her heart with Helstar’s “Nosferatu” and Attacker’s “Second Coming”, this wayward horse-rider being less intricate than the former’s and more aggressive than the latter’s repertoire. The actual darkness is instilled a bit later, though, with the excellent brooding nod to Nevermore and Sanctuary "Sleepwalker", and although the band throw in the odd soothing ballad ("My Love") at some stage, nothing can dissipate the sombre mood which gets some helping from more morosely, also more progressively--executed (“"Haze of You") numbers. The two approaches take turns throughout the more immediate speed/thrashing attacks (“"Execution Day") siding well with dramatic heavy stompers ("Memories"), the culmination arriving in the form of “Skyfall”… yes, a cover version of Adelle’s hit from the James Bond feature of the same title, a superb rendition with pounding sharp, semi-galloping rhythms frequently breaking the original balladic setting, with standout performance by the consistently great vocalist whose emotional clean mid-ranged baritone perfectly captures the pleasantly pessimistic tone of the song and the whole album.

The German metal brotherhood’s fascination with the 80’s American power metal values (Enola Gay, Brainstorm, Couragous, Psychotron, Out of Order, etc.) is nothing new, but these lads may as well hit the top of the movement if they manage to retain the high level here. With musical proficiency exuded in spades, and with the requisite creative flair exhibited, and not only with brilliant cover versions, there’s a lot to make the fanbase hopeful for more lofty exploits of the kind. Yes, the world by all means needs a mesmerist, or rather mesmerists, and soon cause the effect of a single therapy reportedly doesn’t last a lifetime…