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Astral Doors: Black Eyed Children

Swedish classic metal veterans Astral Doors are back with their latest album for Metalville Records, and 8th overall, titled Black Eyed Children. Led as always by the leather lunged vocals of Nils Patrik Johansson, the band also features the stellar guitar duo of Joachim Nordlund & Mats Gesar, keyboard player Jocke Roberg, bassist Ulf Lagerstroem, and drummer Johan Lindstedt. With Johansson's commanding Dio-meets-Coverdale styled pipes, dual guitar & Hammond attack, and blistering rhythms, Astral Doors' love for all things Rainbow, Deep Purple, Dio, and Black Sabbath as always shines brightly.

With a powerful production behind it, Black Eyed Children sounds fantastic, Johansson soaring to the heavens over plenty of super crunchy guitar work, all of which kick off with a bang on the superb 1-2-3 punch of "We Cry Out", "Walls", and "God is the Devil" to open the album. "Die on Stage" sees a stronger keyboard presence but no less powerful, while "Tomorrow's Dead" throws in some prog as well as doom flavors for a heavy hitting & atmospheric formula. The tempo picks up considerably for the ripper "Good vs Bad", Johansson spitting out his venom over gymnastic drumming and tasty guitar & keyboard riffs, while the heavy "Lost Boy" proves to be a tour-de-force for the vocalist, adding plenty of variety to his attack in both heavy metal screamer as well as crooner mode. The near 9-minute title track closes out the album in epic fashion, a tune firmly in the "Holy Diver/Last in Line/Stargazer/Heaven and Hell" mold of majestic heavy metal, the vocals powerful, the melodies grandiose, the keyboards symphonic, and the guitars thunderous.

Astral Doors have been a very consistent band for a lot of years now, and Black Eyed Children keeps up with that tradition in a big way. If you haven't yet discovered the music of this very fine band, now's the perfect time to start.

Track Listing
01. We Cry Out
02. Walls
03. God Is the Devil
04. Die On Stage
05. Tomorrow's Dead
06. Good vs Bad
07. Suburban Song
08. Lost Boy
09. Slaves To Ourselves
10. Black Eyed Children
11. Jesus Christ Movie Star (bonus)

Added: April 1st 2017
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1999
Language: english

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