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Yngwie Malmsteen: Perpetual Flame

Yngwie Malmsteen: Perpetual Flame

Neo-Classical Guitar Metal/Rock
Rating: 4.0/5.0

So you get the latest Yngwie Malmsteen album for your collection or, in my case, also for review. What's the first thing that you do? Play air guitar? Pick your favorite solo? Wonder why hardly any young American rock or metal band can't furnish a single guitarist or a solo near this caliber? (Sorry, that was pure cynicism.) Or try to figure out what foam mousse he's using in his hair these days? (Just kidding on that one, pure sarcasm). I'm probably inclined to the second option of picking my favorite solo(s). However, on 'Perpetual Flame,' as good as the solos may be, there much more going on here.

What's going on here, and what makes 'Perpetual Flame' sound (almost) as fresh and invigorating as 'Rising Force' or 'Marching Out', is Mr. Malmsteen hooking up with two outstanding collaborators in metal: Tim 'Ripper' Owens and Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater). Owens' style is totally suited to Malmsteen's guitar temperament, a perfect match like peanut butter and jelly. This collaboration seems to have given Malmsteen inspiration allowing him to breathe new life into his compositions and fret work. Listening to 'Damnation Game,' or the darker 'Life To Fight Another Day' bears this out. Yet, Malmsteen still blazes away in traditional style on the epic number 'Priest Of The Unholy' and on the pure melodic heavy metal of 'Four Horsemen Of The Apocalypse' or 'Death Dealer.' Yngwie also ventures into some interesting (but not wholly unexpected) melodic hard rock territory on the catchy 'Be Careful What You Wish For' and the neo-blues of 'Magic City.'

Malmsteen's 'Perpetual Flame' will please longtime fans and, hopefully, capture the interest of and inspire a new generation of aspiring guitarists. This easily one of his best works in many years.
  - Craig Hartranft

In Short

Malmsteen's 'Perpetual Flame' will please longtime fans and, hopefully, capture the interest of and inspire a new generation of aspiring guitarists. This easily one of his best works in many years.

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