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Timo Tolkki's Avalon: The Enigma Birth

Well, what can I say? It was a huge unexpected surprise for my very listen to Timo Tolkki's The Enigma Birth and from that primary listen I was extremely hooked on the material on offer.

Would I say this album is perfect - personally I think it is and this for me is what European Power Metal is all about. Catchy melodies, gripping hooks and those double bass drum patterns that just make your heart simply explode with all the enthusiasm it can take.

As per usual, there are many guests adding their impressive talents to this splendid affair, including Brittany Slayes (Unleash The Archers), James Labrie (Dream Theater), Pellek (ex-Damnation Angels, Pellek), Caterina Nix (Chaos Magic), Raphael Mendes (Icon of Sin), Jake E (Chyra, ex-Amaranthe, Dreamland), Aldo Lonobile (Secret Sphere, Edge of Forever, Death SS, ex-Civilization One), Fabio Lione (ex-Rhapsody of Fire, Angra, Turilli/Lione Rhapsody, Eternal Idol, ex-Labyrinth, ex-Vision Divine) and more.

Joining alongside these guest stars are the extravagant musicians of Andrea Arcangeli (DGM) on bass, Marco Lazzarini (Secret Sphere, Hell in the Club) on drums, Antonio Agate (Sweet Oblivion, ex-Secret Sphere) on keys and of course the man himself Timo Tolkki (ex-Stratovarius, Ring of Fire, ex-Revolution Renaissance, ex-Allen - Lande) on guitars; brilliantly adding their expertise to the mixture with this record, making this come out on top as Tolkki's best outing for a very very long time.

On the whole, there is so much material to talk about in the majestic depths of this album and the twelve ambitious tracks are just filled with listening pleasure for many to endure.

Shining through brightly are the stronger tracks that come in the form of the powerfully constructed 'Memories' (in my opinion the best song on the album), featuring the epic voices of Slayes and Nix, that neighbours next to the superbly catchy 'Beautiful Lie', featuring the infamous unique vocals of the one and the only James Labrie.

Further highlights to discuss arive with the solid Bruce Dickinson-esque vocals of Mendes on 'Master of Hell' to become a Heavy Metal anthemic cause to remember, the Avantasia sounding epic 'Another Day' that features the admiral vocals of Phantom Elite's Marina La Torocca and the stupendous eighties influenced Hard Rocker of 'I Just Collapse' that is smothered in Nix's seducing vocal lines taht reminds me of Heart or Warlock.

Additionally, there are some fantastic Stratovarius flavoured numbers lodged in the heart of tracklisting, just like the snappy straight-to- the-point Melodic Metal spectacle 'Beauty and War' that is cleverly drenched in that Tolkki signature sound and emotion. Also, another Stratovarius inspired episode plunges forward as the elegant 'Time' that includes the amazing talent of Torroca once again.

Other highlights come forth in the strengths of the masterly European Power Metal title-track opener 'Enigma Birth' with some soaring high noted vocals from Pellek, the Illustriously unique video single of 'The Fire and the Sinner' with Slayes and Jake E on the some of the best form I think I have ever heard them, the Symphonically arranged effective Fabio Lione sung 'Dreaming', and the modern sounding melody pounding 'Truth' that contain the vocals of Jake E once again.

All in all, The Enigma Birth is just a purely excellent album and I cannot give it enough positive feedback. The musicality on offer throughout is so superior and the basis of the enthusiastic compositions found inside the Melodic Chambers of this record are just sublime. Tolkki and clan have really found its feet here and they have wonderfully distributed the best Melodic Metal album of the year for me so far without any shadow of doubt.

Track List:
1. Enigma Birth
2. I Just Collapse
3. Memories
4. Master of Hell
5. Beautiful Lie
6. Truth
7. Another Day
8. Beauty and War
9. Dreaming
10. The Fire and the Sinner
11. Time
12. Without Fear

Added: July 20th 2021
Reviewer: James Mannion
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 711
Language: english

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