Phantom-X is a US power metal band from Dallas, Texas. History goes back in 2004 when at that time Omen vocalist and bassist Kevin Goocher and Glenn Malicki, formed a Ronnie James Dio tribute band called Stargazer. When Omen was inactive for two years, they decided to turn the Stargazer project into what is now Phantom-X. As lead singer Kevin Goocher has stated their musical influences are Classic Metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Dio. Their latest effort, ‘The Opera Of The Phantom’, is a concept album. It’s a wrap-up of previously released yet re-recorded songs and new songs to complete the concept story. It’s the band’s fourth full-length album and was produced by Phantom-X.
The first four songs were included in their first release back in 2005 called ‘Rise Of The Phantom’. ‘Prelude – Storms Of Hell (Opera Chapter 1)’ begins with an intro followed by a classic power metal tune. ‘The Rise Of The Phantom (Opera Chapter 2)’ has a more heavy sound, ‘Discovery (Opera Chapter 3)’ is an instrumental with a fantastic solo and ‘The Mask (Opera Chapter 4)’ has a more heavy power approach. ‘Storm Riders’ is the second album and contains chapters 5, 6 and 7. ‘Storm Riders (Opera Chapter 5)’ is speed power song with catchy chorus, ‘Everspell (Opera Chapter 6)’ is a slower heavy metal track with Kevin Goocher’s voice sounding terrific, while ‘13th Hour (Opera Chapter 7)’ is a classic heavy metal song. Bill Engfer has played some great riffs and solos throughout the album. The sound of the drums as well as the playing, are magnificent. Glenn Malicki did the bass parts and matched perfectly with the drum parts giving a tight result on the sound of the songs.
Chapters 8, 9 and 10 were included in their third album ‘This Is War’. Track number 8 is called ‘A Strange World (Opera Chapter 8)’and follows the same pattern with ‘13th Hour’, ‘Discovery II (Opera Chapter 9)’ is some kind of heavy ballad and ‘Deep Six Down (Opera Chapter 10)’ is yet another speed power song.
There are three new tracks that close ‘The Opera Of The Phantom’ concept, with ‘Cloning The Christ (Opera Chapter 11)’ and ‘Playing God (Opera Chapter 12)’ sounding heavy as hell and ‘Holy Hell (Opera Chapter 13)’ that contains some heavy riffing, fast solos and double bass drumming and is the last song of the epic concept.
The band released a music video for the track ‘1000 Quatrains’ and has written a tribute song for Ronnie James Dio, one of the best voices and most important persons in the rock and metal music, called ‘Your Majesty’. ‘All Hail The Heroes’ closes the album with the same epic form that you can hear in the entire album.
‘The Opera Of The Phantom’ is definitely not the album of the year. Even though it’s well-played and has some good elements, it lacks of originality and at some points sounds poor, but it is still a good album with music that can satisfy all the unrepentant fans of US power metal.
|Track List||Line Up||01. Storms Of Hell (Opera Chapter 1)
02. The Rise Of The Phantom (Opera Chapter 2)
03. Discovery (Opera Chapter 3)
04. The Mask (Opera Chapter 4)
05. Storm Riders (Opera Chapter 5)
06. Everspell (Opera Chapter 6)
07. 13th Hour (Opera Chapter 7)
08. A Strange World (Opera Chapter 8)
09. Discovery II (Opera Chapter 9)
10. Deep Six Down (Opera Chapter 10)
11. Cloning The Christ (Opera Chapter 11)
12. Playing God (Opera Chapter 12)
13. Holy Hell (Opera Chapter 13)
14. 1000 Quatrains
15. Your Majesty
16. All Hail The Heroes
|Kevin Goocher-Vocals, Keyboards
Bill Engfer- Guitar