Brainstorm - Soul Tempation
MetalBlade Records
Heavy/Power Metal
11 songs (??)
Release year: 2003
Brainstorm, MetalBlade Records
Reviewed by Danny
Album of the month

In the mid nineties, there were several post-Priest, post-Maiden, post-Metallica, post-Helloween heavy/power metal bands with "high pitched vocalists" or "new guitar heroes" looking for their niche in the musical landscape. Bands like Hammerfall, Rhapsody, Edguy, Angra battled for attention, with quite success. Following the new aura of these bands, which created the True Metal wave, we have seen the emergence of dozen of bands trying also to reach for the sky : Nocturnal Rites, Labyrinth, Tierra Santa, Vision Divine, Dark Moor, Primal Fear, Heavenly, Dream Evil, Firewind, Fairyland, etc, etc, etc ...

Iced Earth on the other hand is one of the big U.S. heavy metal names of the nineties, if not the only one. As the media were devoting their full time to the "grunge wave" out of Seattle, Jon Schaffer was fighting hard and alone to bring back alive heavy metal in the US. I won't narrate the full history of Iced Earth(you know it better than me), but there is one German band that has a special place in my heart just after Iced Earth and this band is ... Brainstorm. As far as I am concerned, these musicians and Kamelot represent the only "decent" successors of Iced Earth's unique music style. We elected Brainstorm's Ambiguity as the surprise album in 2000 and Metus Mortis , their previous studio album, was also an accomplishment for this German heavy metal band. So I let you imagine how excited I was to listen to their new album Soul Temptation. The promo we received is an edit version of the album, but looks " representative enough" of the full version of the album. Lets hope so ...

Highs Without Lows, the first song, starts where Metus Mortis left us two years ago, an epic heavy/power metal song finding its rhythm directly from Jon Schaffer guitar-bass "trademark". Soul Temptation stands on its own feet by filling a relative "void" in today's current metal scene. The eleven tracks constitute a collection of technically, fast, intelligent and complex music fronted by a masterful vocalist Andy B. Frank. To make a long story short, this vocalist is one of the best German heavy metal singers around after Ralf Scheepers (Primal Fear's singer). Through out Soul Temptation, there are other well known bands that twisted in my mind : Iron Maiden for the galloping guitar riffs or Kamelot for the arabesque touch which is more than true on the epic trilogy called Trinity Of Lust, the highlight of Soul Temptation. This song is devised in three chapters: Shiva's Tears, Fornever, Soul Temptation. Furthermore, you realize that there is no weak track nor a boring moment on this new album, which stands as the best heavy/power metal album I have heard this year since Epica (Kamelot).

Brainstorm's sound is defined again by the haunted guitar melodies (Highs Without Lows), killing head-banging riffs (To The Head), pounding rhythm and instantly memorable choruses (The Leading, fast and aggressive tunes (Doorway To Survive) and the magnificent voice of Andy makes the difference between underground bands and leading bands. Metal Blade will release a double limited edition CD/DVD of Soul Temptation. The DVD is the live show that was performed at the Summer Breeze festival.

I have a kind of feeling that Soul Temptation will be my heavy metal record for this summer. Jump on it ;)

Killing Songs :
Trinity Of Lust, Highs Without Lows, To The Head
Danny quoted 93 /100
Other albums by Brainstorm that we have reviewed:
Brainstorm - Midnight Ghost reviewed by Alex and quoted 76 / 100
Brainstorm - Firesoul reviewed by Jared and quoted 89 / 100
Brainstorm - On the Spur of the Moment reviewed by Cory and quoted 88 / 100
Brainstorm - Downburst reviewed by Crims and quoted 86 / 100
Brainstorm - Liquid Monster reviewed by Crims and quoted 87 / 100
To see all 8 reviews click here
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