Onward – Reawaken

qb_20303_onwardThis somehow got lost in the shuffle in a mess of promotional material dating back to February of last year. Better late than never I say, for Onward are actually doing something fresh sounding with a medium of traditional metal that typically sounds plagiarized into submission to these ears. Toby Knapp has written all the music on “Reawaken” by himself and the riff action is full of fire and memorable twists, sometimes thrash (a minor influence), sometimes Maiden, but all the time passionate sounding. Thankfully the vocal work refrains from that screeching soprano/falsetto ala Halford, in favor of a more throaty mid that does bring to mind the stirring midrange of Agent Steel’s John Cyriis (Think of the classic “Chosen to Stay”). Certainly not a direct clone, but Michael Grant does share a similar inflection on occasion. Regardless, his performance seems to be a perfect match for the heavy and always colorful music that Toby has created. A full production and a unique presentation easily avoids the Helloween trappings of an overrun and bred to death Euro power metal scene. Highly recommended for fans of this more musical style of metal. – Marty
CENTURY MEDIA

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~ by martyworm on January 3, 2009.

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