22. Timo Tolkki's Avalon - The Land of New Hope
Originally Posted by jhdeity
Cool list so far. Love Havok and Sodom getting some love. I've seen too many lists that omit them or people just never heard them I guess.
You have to respect Timo for never giving up. Even though he ran Stratovarius into the ground, he regrouped with the decent Revolution Renaissance, Symfonia, and now with this Avantasia copy. The good news is that this album is actually really enjoyable. It slows down a bit in the middle, but when you bring in Michael Kiske to do a straight-up plagiarism of "Keeper of the Seven Keys" for the title track of the record, you have a winner. Even though there are a number of moments that sound like they've ripped off another band, I suppose my love of power metal has made me overlook it. The highlights are "A World Without Us", "Enshrined In My Memory", and "The Land of New Hope".
21. Mindmaze - Mask of Lies
From the moment I first heard "Never Look Back", I knew this band would be awesome. The album took a while for me to really get into, because I'm not much of a prog guy, but the power metal elements reign strong as well so that helped. Part of what makes this album work so well is that the female vocals are not at all gimmicky, and that's so rare to hear in metal that it stands out a lot. The guitar work is incredible too. I also really enjoyed the tribute to Savatage in "Remember". The best songs are "Never Look Back", "This Holy War", and "Remember".
20. Amon Amarth - Deceiver of the Gods
I only recently became an Amon Amarth fan, but this album is just awesome. It's really no different from anything else they've put out recently, but the production and songwriting are so impressive that it's hard not to love this album. I think because it's their first album of theirs that I've heard that is new since I became a fan, I put more time into learning it than the others, so I came away enjoying it more than the last two. Either way, it's right on par with all of the over stuff. Standout tracks are "Deceiver of the Gods", "As Loke Falls", and "Father of the Wolf".
19. Death Angel - The Dream Calls For Blood
Can anybody explain where this Death Angel came from and what they did with the Death Angel of albums past? I've always been a huge supporter of Death Angel, and I did like their previous albums, but they had a bad habit of putting a couple of fast tunes on their records and then easing off the gas for the rest of the album. On "The Dream Calls For Blood", they did no such thing. This album is pure speed for the most part, and is really impressive. If this is the new direction of Death Angel, I will definitely get to be more excited for each of their releases. My favourites are "Son of the Morning", "The Dream Calls For Blood", and "Caster of Shame".