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Two years have passed since “Firesoul” was released and BRAINSTORM are back with their eleventh studio album. The Germans have retained a stable line-up for quite a long time.As a result, each release features the same high quality standards that the band has set over the years, and “Scary Creatures” is no exception. As a matter of fact, I find BRAINSTORM’s new album even better than its predecessor.

Everything you want and expect from a good power metal album is here. The band’s sound combines elements from both the American and European power metal,although the European influencesare more dominant. The general artwork and the lyrical themes may remind you of AVANTASIA, while musically you will hear traces of SYMPHORCE and BLIND GUARDIAN mixing perfectly with the band’s intense personal style.

“Scary Creatures” consists of ten well-built songs, full of Torsten Ihlenfeld and Milan Loncaric’s excellent guitar work, tight rhythm section and powerful vocals by Andy B. Franck. The album’s opening track “The World We See” sets the mood for the rest of the album with its pounding rhythm and its heavy riffs. Franck’s voice has become more mature over the years, acquiring an additional raspy hard rock tone, making his performances more complete.

The speed is reduced a little bit on the next two songs, before it rises up again on “Where the Angels Dream”, one of the album’s faster songs. The title track stands right in the middle of the album. With its creepy vibeand the additional classic samples it stands out as one of the best moments of the album.

This variety of tempos and speeds is retained throughout the album, keeping the listener alert from the first to the last note. Along with Achim Köhler’s excellent job in the production, BRAINSTORM delivers an album that sounds as most of the modern power metal albums should.

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