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Silent Force - Infatuator (7/10) - Germany - 2001

Genre: Power Metal
Label: Massacre Records
Playing time: 52:46
Band homepage: Silent Force

Tracklist:

  1. Infatuator
  2. Fall Into Oblivion
  3. Hear Me Calling
  4. Promised Land
  5. We Must Use The Power
  6. All Guns Blazing
  7. Cena Libera
  8. Gladiator
  9. The Blade
  10. Last Time
  11. World Aflame
  12. In My Arms
  13. Northern Lights
  14. Video: See Beyond
Silent Force - Infatuator
"Infatuator" is the second effort of the new band built around the core of DC Cooper (former ROYAL HUNT-singer) and Alex Beyrodt (PRIMAL FEAR, SINNER), who both appear to be the focal points and primary engines of the whole project. Basically, the main sound of SILENT FORCE can be summed up as a sort of Power/Prog Metal with some symphonic elements thrown in here and there. But don't get me wrong, for sure this ain't a typical Power Metal-album like the billions we've heard from 1997 to nowadays. In fact, the band I find comparable the most with SILENT FORCE is maybe SYMPHONY X. Actually, the album has a rather relevant Prog-inclination, though the production tends to emphasize the Power Metal aspect of the tracks. It's not a case that one of the first things I noticed while listening to "Infatuator" is the choosing of the sounds for the instruments, that is totally tuned on the Power Metal-wavelength. This is especially true for the drums, whose sound is absolutely identical to the standardized triggered drum-sounding we can find on each and every Power Metal-album (which, my bust, I don't like). In my opinion, this production choice detracts a bit to the notability of the whole record, but on the other hand it's their musical choice, so it cannot be blamed that much.

By the way, this is for sure a solid album. There aren't any conspicuous weakpoints in the compositions, and it's evident that all of the tracks here have been composed and arranged in a very detailed manner. Ironically enough, in my opinion this also represents the limit of the whole album: it loses value 'cos of its sheer mannerism. I mean, some musical solutions coming out from "Infatuator" reminds me of several other bands which have already covered that ground. Okay, I admit it's not an extremely annoying flaw at all, so I'll not make a federal case of it, but to be true it slightly bothered me.

The album provides us with 13 worthwhile songs in which quite obviously DC and Alex have the biggest part, shining with all of their talent. Especially on the trilogy suite "Cena Libera"-"Gladiator"-"The Blade" (which I think is the most remarkable part of the whole album), the skills of both the singer and the guitar-hero flare up with all their intensity. Instead, in other moments, the work of the vocalist appears to be a little too forced in order to be more aggressive and commanding ("Fall Into Oblivion", "We Must Use The Power"), often reminding of Rob Halford. The resemblance with the Metal God is even impressive on the PRIEST-cover "All Guns Blazing", whose rendition is hence loyal to the Brit-band. As for the guitarist, he's a darn' fine musician, but I had the slight impression that sometimes he shows off a bit. I think there are way too many solos weighting the tracks, and also too many guitar/keys-duels in the vein of Malmsteen. Another complaint I have is the somewhat recurrent use of some common Power Metal-clichés (mostly noticeable on guitar riffs and speedy attacks).

By the way, these all are venial shortcomings, and the overall quality level of the record is above average, no doubt 'bout it. Such tracks as the opener, "Last Time", the sweet ballad "In Your Arms" and the aforementioned suite just witness the prowess of this disc.

Bottom line: certainly not a masterpiece, still "Infatuator" is better than the majority of the Power/Prog-albums you can hear today.

Luca Moscatiello



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