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Forged in Black: Fear Reflecting Fear

When I was younger, I would have picked up this album just to hear its virtuosic guitar work. In those days, speed and pyrotechnics mattered a great deal. I still remember listening to Yngwie Malmsteen's work with Rising Force and thinking that nobody could match his abilities. My views of heavy metal guitar have changed quite a bit over the decades, but I still thrill at unabashed guitar virtuosity.

It's OK to feel nostalgic while writing about a release like this one. The musical connections to the past are specific and deliberate; each song features strong, wide-ranging, and clear vocals, the kind we used to call "operatic" even though that wasn't the most accurate term. Similarly, the guitars are consistently fast, clean, virtuosic, and powerful. Who said the image of the guitar god is dead? As with all bands like this, it's important to explain that this isn't simply a resurrection of an older style. Instead, it's an attempt to revisit its strengths while drawing on some of the more contemporary moods and themes. I had fun listening to this release. It's pretty short but it manages to capture the big and brash sound of traditional metal in just the right ways. I doubt Forged in Black will achieve the heights of Judas Priest or Helloween but it's fun to know there's a band out there that wants to try.

Track Listing:
1. Fear Reflecting Fear
2. Renegades of the Last Rites
3. 1000 Wings
4. Shadows Still Remain

Added: May 12th 2016
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1103
Language: english

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