LIQUID STEEL - Midnight Chaser
December 20, 2016, a year ago
Sophomore full-length from heretofore unknown Austrian traditional metallers. Kicking off with an Iron Maiden inspired trip around the drums, “Kingdom Of Silence” sets the table for the nine guitar saturated courses to follow. Acoustic guitar to start, the title track gallops to high pitched yelped, stilted Anglo-lyrics. “Air Races” speeds along, threatening to out kick its coverage (i.e. faster than singer can deliver a second language), but towards the end drops into a military cadence drum led pace. It ends with sustained high pitch, which is nicely juxtaposed to the air raid siren that open an otherwise more laidback “Hiroshima”, complete with spoke voiceover mid-section. At 7:43, it's almost twice the length of some other inclusions.
Once past the nasal whine, “Starrider” is a decent slice of European power metal. Plenty of cowbell in the “Fright Night” chorus. A misplaced, pedestrian “Night Child” seems to have wandered in off the Sunset Strip (circa '87), while the acoustic begun “Autumn Leaves” is the lone full blown ballad, at least till the halfway point, where things inexplicably enliven. The disc ends much as it started, with an all-out burner, “Kubla Khan”. As is often the case with traditional/power metal outfits, the singer's deficiencies lower the score by about a point.