Persuader - The Fiction Maze
Inner Wound Recordings
Power Metal
12 songs (56'45)
Release year: 2014
Reviewed by Chris
Album of the month

It's been a long time since Persuader released an album, 2006 to be precise. That's a whole 8 year without being blessed with an album from a band I really love. So did the band came back with a killer release or a dud ?

It's the former, this album reminds me of their fantastic debut The Hunter, and if you like the band or Blind Guardian, then you will love the band's new offering. Pure Power Metal with fantastic vocals by Jens Carlsson (reminiscent of Hansi K├╝rsch) and great riffing and powerful melodies. Guitars riffs are strong and powerful, but it's the vocal melodies that take the front seat, and Persuader is in top form in that regard. The songs are heavy yet catchy, in pure Heavy / Power metal tradition. 2014 is a great year so far when Power Metal is concerned, almost every album from my favorite bands (Pretty Maids, Freedom Call, Axxis, Iron Savior (review to come soon)...) are all great to amazing releases. And it's only March ! I hope Gamma Ray will not disappoint next. But back to Persuader, The Fiction Maze contains 12 tracks, 12 killer fast (and some great mid-tempo) tracks, no ballads here (but one instrumental track), but it's no surprise as Persuader is not a ballad band :), and it's one thing I like about them. Their album are always heavy, iron infused and fast paced. It's difficult to choose favorite songs as they are all of great quality. The title track could have been a Blind Guardian song, no questions asked, and what a killer song it is ! InSect is a song with such a killer melodic riff of pure awesomeness it will invade your mind and have a party in there ! Songs like War, Sent to the Grave, Heathen, Falling Faster even the bonus track Aftermath are all great songs that are perfect examples of what the band can deliver best and overall The Fiction Maze is a very strong and mature album. Let's just hope it doesn't take Persuader another 8 years to release their next album. It's almost a joke to me to see the bonus track status on Aftermath, as this is without a doubt my favorite track from the band so far. But it's maybe cause I'm a sucker for really catchy vocal melody and the chorus on this song is simply out of this world (even if it's quite simple).

The Blind Guardian vibe in Persuader' sound is stronger than ever, the vocal melodies and of course the vocal similarities help a lot in that regard but I never get a copycat feeling with Persuader that I would get with other bands when the similarities in sound are so great. They still have their own identity imho, it is clear they are influenced, but it's also clear that they can write original material with very powerful hooks and melodies. In the end The Fiction Maze is a very solid effort and fans of the band will rejoice at the coming back as it is a worthy one. Now it's time for Persuader to already get back to work on a follow-up that will hopefully be delivered in a timely manner. Cause one thing is for sure, The Fiction Maze made me Persuader hungry ! Thumbs up.

Killing Songs :
War, The Fiction Maze, InSect, Sent to the Grave, Heathen, Falling Faster and Aftermath.
Chris quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Persuader that we have reviewed:
Persuader - When Eden Burns reviewed by Aleksie and quoted 91 / 100
Persuader - Evolution Purgatory reviewed by Danny and quoted 93 / 100
Persuader - The Hunter reviewed by Danny and quoted 92 / 100
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