A host of top power metal musicians have been involved with Iron Savior. Gamma Ray wizard Kai Hansen played for five-years as Savior’s guitarist, Blind Guardian’s Thomas Stauch drummed with them for a year and sticksman Dan Zimmerman (formerly of Freedom Call and also Gamma Ray) make up their A-list of power metal clientèle. But despite their departure more than 10 years ago and the exit of Stormzone’s Yenz Leonhardt this year, the vision of musician Piet Sielck continues with seventh album The Landing.
The German’s sci-fi concepts spill into this record to continue the story he began over 14-years ago. However, this time round he’s joined by the line-up that outed 2002′s Condition Red. Fans might not call it their favourite Savior record, but it shouldn’t stop them from enjoying it. Epic intro Descending opens the album before the metal-punch of The Savior which would definitely interest Sabaton fans for its hefty riffery and thick layers of vocal harmonies.
You call a track Heavy Metal Never Dies after nearly 15-years in the genre and immediately you do yourself no favours – it’s likely you’re going to be wading in a quicksand of horrendous metal cliches without a hand of help to save you from the mediocre abyss. But somehow, Iron Savior pull it off with anthemic purpose.
Moment In Time is a hair-raising heavy metal highlight with a backbone of bravado power metal and smart neo-classical picking that hears Iron Savior’s ambition matched with an equally impressive delivery. R.U Ready is a disappointment that tips the album slightly out of balance in its ‘rock ‘n’ roll’ themed songwriting and ordinary chorus. The Landing might fire a couple of blanks but it finishes strongly with the beautiful ballad of Before The Pain and the reflective yet energetically upbeat closer No Guts, No Glory.