As far as I was concerned HELLOWEEN have been dead and buried for a few years now. "Better Than Raw", "Metal Jukebox" and "The Dark Ride" were more than I could take from a band that almost single handily invented the Power Metal genre. These albums where lack lustre, darkly foreboding, tired efforts and for all intents the antithesis of what HELLOWEEN have always been about: Melodic Power Metal.
Now back firing on all cylinders and with a re-vamped line up of sorts I am more than happy to report that HELLOWEEN have produced, in the oddly titled "Rabbit Don't Come Easy" their best music since 1994's "Master Of The Rings".
New boys Sascha Gerstner (guitar) and skin basher Stefan Schwarzmann have gelled effortlessly with old timers Michael Weikath (guitar), Markus Grosskopf (bass) and vocalist Andreas Deris to put HELLOWEEN back on the Power Metal map.
Rip-roaring efforts like "Just A Little Sign", "Open Your Life", "Never Be A Star" (sounding closely like a "Perfect Gentleman") are the songs you've wanted HELLOWEEN to play for years now. The anthems are back. The express train drumming and the twin kerosene fuelled axe attack of Weikath and Gerstner battle across the entire album. However the band are not content to merely revisit the past and in songs such as the brutally heavy "Liar" which will appeal to the GRAVE DIGGER, EDGUY followers out there.
This album could and should be a monster! (Online July 4, 2003)