The Metal Opera
Review by Krys on May 31, 2001.
No wonder that Tobias Sammet’s project Avantasia was for months the subject of speculations. Hiring the top of the crop from heavy metal world will not only get attention from metal fans but also from every person involved in the music business. What can I say, the list is impressive. Michael Kiske (nickname Ernie on the album), David Defeis, Ralf Zdiarstek, Sharon Den Adel, Rob Rock, Oliver Hartmann, Andre Matos, Kai Hansen and Timo Tolkki as vocalists only should give you a good idea of the quality and size of this project. I didn’t mention their original bands’ names on purpose because true metal fans can name them in their sleep. As for you who don’t have any idea who those people are do yourself a favor and find it out. You won’t regret it.
So what is "The Metal Opera"? It’s a concept album with a quite complex and expanding fantasy story based partly on medieval times and partly on a religious background where each guest vocalist takes over a different character, which by the way is described in detail in the booklet. Other than that, it is the best power metal album at least since Helloween’s two "Keeper..." discs if not better. Simply put, it’s a brilliant masterpiece for the ages. You don’t believe me? Then move your sorry ass from this computer and go buy it. There are not enough words to describe Tobias’ compositions and arrangements genius. The guitar riffs, the solos, the rhythm section are just amazing.
Describing each song is absolutely a secondary matter in the case of this album because each one of them is a piece of art and can stand on its own outside of the overall concept. Every song is full of outstanding heavy metal riffs and fantastically played solos. Perfectly played rhythm section and change of tempos makes it one of the most energetic and enthusiastic releases I’ve heard. You’ll be amazed by complexity of this release and at this same time by melodic simplicity of each song. One word - a killer. Don’t listen to this album with closed eyes and headphones though, because those tracks are so warm to the ears that after listening to this album you might surprisingly find yourself floating in the sky with an open heart looking for love. I know, it’s a scary thought for some metal-devils, I warned you.
Bottom Line: If you’ve never heard or liked power metal I simply don’t know a better release to start with. For everyone else, I assume you already have it or you are on the way to the store right now.
Rating: 10 out of 10