When I saw the new Brainstorm album promo arrive in my email I hesitated. I wasn't sure I wanted to review Scary Monsters. Why? Because I wasn't all that impressed with 2014's Firesoul. I compared that album Metallica's heavy metal roadkill St. Anger. Not so positive. But apparently I was wrong. The album became their highest charting album. Oh well. All music is subjective.
Scary Monsters, however, for me, is definitely a step up from the previous. Some things remain like the immense wall of riffage throughout, varying from thrash to power metal levels. But the two things I panned, the muted vocal arrangements and lack of significant guitar solos, have improved. Whether by mix or mastering, Andy Franck's vocals are more forward, not by leaps and bounds, but much better. And there are some breathtaking fiery guitar solos, notable in the title track, yet also in Scars In Your Eyes, Take Me To The Never, and We Are.
There's also two other elements that rose to the top. There's quite a few songs here that move on pure heavy metal rock groove, you know, the toe-tapping variety. Take Me To The Never is one, but also Sky Among Clouds and We Are. It comes down to a solid combination of guitar harmony and basic rhythm section groove. The other thing is the drumming. Dieter Bernert is on fire, his groove and pacing amazing. Put together with the bass line as within We Are, the drums are inspired. In the end, Brainstorm fans will find Scary Monsters a fine compliment to the previous Firesoul, both an continuation and advancement of the Brainstorm power metal sound.
Brainstorm fans will find Scary Monsters a fine compliment to the previous Firesoul, both an continuation and advancement of the Brainstorm power metal sound.
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