Sunday 26 November 2017

Album Review: BEAST IN BLACK - Beserker

Beast In Black - Beserker

01. Beast in Black
02. Blind and Frozen
03. Blood of a Lion
04. Born Again
05. Zodd the Immortal
06. The Fifth Angel
07. Crazy, Mad, Insane
08. Hell for All Eternity
09. Eternal Fire
10. Go to Hell
11. End of the World
12. Ghost in the Rain 

Beast In Black is the new band from former Battle Beast guitarist and song writer Anton Kabanen. He was kicked out of Battle Beast back in 2015 for allegedly being too controlling. In fairness, he had written all of their songs up to that point. Battle Beast released their first album without Anton earlier this year (see my review here). Personally, I think it's their best yet, but there seems to be a number of fans who preferred their earlier, more Power Metal driven style. This debut album, Berserker, will delight those people.

Berserker picks up where Unholy Savior (Anton's last album with Battle Beast) left off. As well as having the word 'Beast' in the band name, he's even taken their old mascot from their album covers, the lion/barbarian dude, not to mention used the same artist. I get the sense that there's a lot of bitterness here, as well as a lot to prove, and I believe that Anton has channelled these emotions into the music to carve his musical path in the direction he desires.

Berserker is melodic Power Metal central!  It's a genre that I like in small doses, as I find that it can be a little keyboard heavy, pompous, and generally twee (it must be those major key choruses) for my tastes. However, I like Beast In Black a lot more than most of their peers, so they must be doing something right.

The real gem here is their lead singer, Yannis Papadopoulos, whose performance throughout the record is nothing short of incredible. At times he sounds very feminine (that's a compliment, by the way), on tracks such as Blind And Frozen, but can quickly change to a more aggressive style, or even screams worthy of Judas Priest's Rob Halford. His range and flexibility is mind blowing. He's easily the best thing about Beast In Black (sorry Anton!).

Berserker is a well executed album and a very strong debut. Battle Beast fans now have the best of both worlds. It goes to show that good things can come out of divorces!


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