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Boguslaw Balcerak's Crylord: Gates Of Valhalla

Norse mythology sure is a popular ingredient with metal bands of various stylings, this time it's a neo classical melodic progressive metal group's turn to with the epic title of Gates Of Valhalla. Not their first album Gates Of Valhalla is Boguslaw Balcerak's Crylord's second release, the band's debut was 2011's Blood On The Prophets. Like that album Gates Of Valhalla again features multiple vocalists and most of those names metal fans will recognise. They are Carsten "Lizard" Schulz (Evidence One, Book Of Reflections, ex Domain), Goran Edman (ex Malmsteen, Karmakanic, Brazen Abbot), Rick Altzi (Masterplan, At Vance, Epysode), Ricky Wychowaniec and Mark Boals (Ring Of Fire, Iron Mask, ex Malmsteen, ex Royal Hunt etc. etc.). It's this triumphant combination of experienced talented singers that will draw many to Gates Of Valhalla and they wont regret it.

While those vocals are indeed impressive they aren't everything the musical component is also very satisfying. There is added appeal on this album as Boguslaw Balcerak's Crylord is the band of dynamite Polish guitarist Boguslaw Balcerak whose playing erupts on Gates Of Valhalla. So you would expect Boguslaw's guitar to play a predominant role on this recording as he delivers those stirring riffs and solos but it isn't overdone. Boguslaw's performance is entwined with very complementary keyboards and supported by a vibrant rhythm section.

Gates Of Valhalla opens with "Passage To The Other Side" as Carsten "Lizard" Schulz takes the box seat and you soon hear why the above vocalists were chosen as combined their appeal can't be denied. And the music well that's mighty impressive also and really firing on their memorable title track "Gates Of Valhalla" and you simply can't have a neo-classical metal release without a healthy animated serve of guitar/keyboard interaction and that's the case here. Malmsteen fans will eat up the shredding neo-metal of "Judgement Day" with Rick Altzi on lead vocals and "Pompeii" has Mark Boals' sounding right at home. Neo-classical with progressive metal influence isn't all you find on Gates Of Valhalla take "Lost Again" for example this is a great melodic track with a wonderful chorus, showing a different side to this group as the instruments are restrained somewhat and the spotlight is on the vocals.

The talented crew that are Boguslaw Balcerak's Crylord have come together and recorded a memorable album that rises above many similar releases.

Track listing
1. Passage To The Other Side
2. Gates Of Valhalla
3. We Came To Rock
4. Mirrored Eyes
5. Judgment Day
6. Lost Again
7. Deadnight Serenade
8. House Of Pain
9. Pompeii
10. War Memorial

Added: April 20th 2014
Reviewer: Scott Jessup
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Language: english

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