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Beast In Black – From Hell With Love

Label: Nuclear Blast
Format: CD
Released: 2019
Reviewed By: Rich Catino
Rating: 8.5/10

What happens when you combine early 2000’s power metal from Edguy and HammerFall, with Nightwish, and ‘80s AOR rock like Survivor, Giuffria, and Icon (“Night Of The Crime”)? - It’s a Beast In Black. Finland, and all the Scandinavian, and European, countries really love their '80s AOR hard rock and glam metal bands, evident by their summer festival lineups. So it’s understandable how these Fins channeled such retro sounds and melodies for album number two “From Hell With Love”.


Opener ‘Cry Out For A Hero’ combines the gritty melodic texture of singer Yannis Papadopoulos power metal range with the driving guitars and rhythm. Yet, the keys on ‘From Hell With Love’ and Yannis’ tone is pure ‘80s AOR rock. You may think… how does the grit and scream of metal blend with the clean melodic tone of ‘80s hard rock? Well, it works perfectly. These guys craft smooth transitions and balance between the two. It’s harmonious and pleasing.
Don’t get scared, those boy band vocal harmonies on ‘Sweet True Lies’ are not from NSYNC or the Backstreet Boys. The guitars and harmonies keep the song grounded in metal. Almost like a Lordi radio rocker. ‘Repentless’ is pure European power metal, triumphant keyboards (also ‘Unlimited Sin’), guitars, double bass, and all, while ‘Die By The Blade’ follows and is right back to the ‘80s. I mean the keyboard tone and higher vocal, its straight out of a (Rocky) movie soundtrack. Ballad ‘Oceandeep’ gets Celtic/folky with the woodwinds and acoustic guitars, and more ‘80s movie soundtrack rock returns for ‘True Believe’ with keyboards taken center stage. ‘This Is War’ is the most metal of the lot, leaving out the retro feel, going for more a straight ahead crunch and punch. ‘Heart Of Steel’ is pure early Edguy worship with the influence of Sabaton on the gang vocals/chorus.
Really, no complaints, eleven songs that bridges sounds from the distant past, to the present, American and European melodic hard rock and heavy metal. Very well could be the next big thing

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