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Winterlong - Valley Of The Lost (8/10) - Sweden - 2001

Genre: Power Metal
Label: Lion Music
Playing time: 44:16
Band homepage: Winterlong

Tracklist:

  1. From Heaven To Hell
  2. Sky Travelers
  3. Winterlong
  4. Valley Of The Lost
  5. The Water Spirit
  6. Nosferatu
  7. Mystery Of Life
  8. Victory
  9. Written In Blood
  10. Driven By Insanity
Winterlong - Valley Of The Lost

Swedish band on a Finnish label, with German distribution. Isn't globalism something nice? But what am I talking about here, all that counts is the music and that is formidable! True Metal it is! Quite fast, almost the Melodic Speed-alley, but they fortunately elude the typical happy nursery rhymes.

This is also thanks to the vocals of fronter Hussni Mörsare, who doesn't sound like Kiske reincarnated, but has a very rough voice. Similar to the shouter of EVERGREY! With that he's got a big plus in my book already, because I just prefer the rougher variant to the "clean" one. But still I'd recommend this album to fans of EDGUY/SONATA ARCTICA/RHAPSODY as well. The choruses are very hymnic and sound pretty heroic, plus they have a typical guitar-wizard on the six-string, who, I am sure, has a few Malmsteen-albums in his shelf. But as his efforts never drift off into narcissistic and endless solos, it's OK. That kind of style seems to be a social disease in Sweden... Well, if they feel good with it...

Overall you have to attest the band a very good debut-album, because the songs have more class than much of what is under contract elsewhere. They also do not make the mistake of using highspeed throughout, but also use some mid-tempo tunes as well, sounds fresh somehow! "We Are Winterlong reaching for the top of the hills..." could be some kind of battle-hymn, can't get this melody out of my head! If you take into account that this band seems to be pretty young, then they might be in for a glorious future!

Ralf Henn



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