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Edguy: Age of the Joker
Edguy Age of the Joker album new music review

Edguy: Age of the Joker

Melodic Hard Rock/Heavy Metal
5.0/5.0

Coming to a new Edguy is always a good thing. Ten years ago this German melodic heavy metal band single-handedly brought me back to metal in the 21st century (helping to revive me from a decade lost to grunge in nu-metal). Age of the Joker is their ninth studio album, with the band offering both classic and new Edguy.

For classic Edguy, tale-telling in epic melodic power metal form, look to Rock of Cashel, The Arcane Guild, and Behind the Gates to Midnight World as they all have that large ambitious Edguy sound. Rock of Cashel offers strong melodic metal with a smooth groove, piano segue half way, and then guitar solos with a celtic feel. The Arcane Guild finds the band echoing the VGO era with galloping power metal, but infused with some Hammond style organ. (Edguy seems to allow for more liberal and evident keyboard presence throughout this disc.) Typical Edguy, Behind the Gates to Midnight World is extravagant: epic melodic metal with varied movements of mixed tempos. The opener Robin Hood also fits this style but, of all the songs, is nearly too typical, almost caricature, of Edguy power metal. It would have been better to put it at the end or, at the very least, switched with Nobody's Feel (which would have been a better start).

If bombastic power metal is characteristic of Edguy, so also is extremely catchy melodic metal. Edguy has an uncanny ability blur metal with a strong hard rock groove. Nobody's Hero, the radio friendly tunes Breathe and (vulgar) Two Out of Seven or, to a slightly lesser extent, Fire on the Downline allow the listener to tap his toe and band his head in a single romp. And what would an Edguy album be without a metal ballad? Incomplete, you answer. Every Night Without You is not quite as inspiring as Land of the Miracle, but follows the formula: passionate and soaring.

However, the novelty of Age of the Joker is the unlikely and extremely enjoyable Pandora's Box. Beginning with some interesting acoustic/steel guitar work the song develops into that blur of accessible melodic hard rock and metal. Yet, the best part is the return of that steel guitar in blues fashion for the solo. Match this with the catchy melody and chorus, and the new Edguy becomes the surprising evolving Edguy. Age of the Joker is worth this song alone.

With Age of the Joker, Edguy continues from strength to strength, another fine album of melodic heavy metal from a band who knows their craft, and keeps getting better at it. Strongly recommended.







In Short

With Age of the Joker, Edguy continues from strength to strength, another fine album of melodic heavy metal from a band who knows their craft, and keeps getting better at it. Strongly recommended.

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