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Rock, Rob: Eyes of Eternity

Rob Rock, former singer of the neoclassical-metal band Impellitteri, does not cover any ABBA songs on his second album, Eyes of Eternity. Which isn't to say that his metallic version of "Eagle" on 2000's Rage of Creation failed to take wing. But one ABBA cover in a career is enough.

For Eyes of Eternity, Rock retained the same four players who recorded the debut with him, and then improved upon that record in almost every aspect. From the exquisitely melodic songs to the beautiful packaging, Eyes of Eternity sounds tougher and more mature than most of Rage of Creation. "Rock the Earth" opens this album in anthem-like style that recalls Rhapsody and Hammerfall, the uplifting title track soars with a power-metal fury, "Rage of Creation" borrows from the Eighties to attain one of the disc's most irrepressible melodies, and "Fields of Fire" mixes religious imagery with intricate fretwork. As with many neoclassical-metal albums, these songs are laced with fantasy images and believe-in-yourself lyrics. And as with many neoclassical-metal singers, Rock tends to go a little over the top with his voice.

That's one reason why the 12-minute closer "The Hour of Dawn," on which Rock reins in his voice, is so impressive. Another reason is because Rock invited several guitar players to perform solos that collide in a climaxing crescendo of speed, power and melody. Guest players on the track include Jack Frost (Seven Witches), Axel Rudi Pell, Gus G. (Dream Evil), Howie Simon (Tamplin), Jeff Kollman (Glenn Hughes) and Roy Z (Bruce Dickinson). Incidentally, Roy Z also produced Eyes of Eternity, making the album sound as clear and heavy as his previous work for the likes of Halford and Helloween.

I'm impressed.

Added: December 18th 2003
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Official Rob Rock Web Site
Hits: 2954
Language: english

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