ALBUM REVIEWS            



Wall Of Skulls

Brainstorm are a power metal band from Germany forming in 1989, enjoying a twenty five year, thirteen album recording career, with their latest opus 'Wall Of Skulls', released in 2021.    
'Wall Of Skulls' may just be "the bands strongest album to date" - a sentiment made the band and wholly endorsed by me. For forty five minutes across eleven songs, Brainstorm hammer, bludgeon, and batter the senses with top notch power metal. There's urgency and purpose written all over the new album, head banging opportunities aplenty, and an infectious level so high your nose is liable to bleed! As the two minute intro 'Chamber Thirteen' builds the anticipation levels to an irresistible high, millions of die hard power metal fans know that such an intro is just the calm before the storm. And they're definitely not wrong - album opener proper 'Where Ravens Fly', hits the ground running, scorching by at high velocity. The pace and power of 'Where Ravens Fly' is incredible, with fast and furious head banging the only style of head banging suitable for this type of all out power metal.    
The blistering pace of the opening song is replaced by the shuddering power metal stomper 'Solitude'. The mighty bombastic and beefy riffs will slam listeners into walls, demolish buildings, and leave only devastation. Brainstorm have effortlessly switched gears with the opening double salvo, superbly showcasing two different styles of power metal. Scorching pace makes an emphatic return to the album in the mighty shape of 'Escape The Silence'. Featuring the German metal legend Peavy Wagner (lead singer and bass player for pioneering power metal band Rage) 'Escape The Silence' is a fast and furious gallop of aggression fuelled power metal. The scorching pace continues with 'Turn Off The Light', featuring Seeb Levermann (current vocalist and former guitarist for German power metallers Orden Ogan). 'Turn Off The Light' also adds a more majestic power metal flavour to the album.    
And adding to the recent majestic turn, 'Glory Disappears (Black From Grey)' adds the mighty anthemic style of metal too. The monster riffing and thundering drumming are an aural pleasure, the rabble rousing rhythm bringing the mosh pits to a heightened state of euphoria, with fists raised high in pure delight. The thrash powered style of power metal - as pioneered by Rage - makes an appearance in the monolithic shape of the highly aggressive paced 'My Dystopia'. Brainstorm are visiting every corner of the power metal genre, with their new album delivering an Album Of The Year performance. The swaggering mid tempo pace returns with 'End Of My Innocence', a stunningly melodic metal romp with one hundred percent infectiousness. And that chorus, catchy as hell and a definite crowd sing a long moment during a live performance.    
Brainstorm are pulling out all the stops on their latest release, not relying on their weighty back catalogue or lengthy career to carry them - they are bursting with youthful energy, showing many of today's younger bands how power metal should sound like... The intensity level has been sky high since the album began, and with no sign of it letting up, 'Stigmatized (Shadows Fall)' rockets on, guitar riffs blazing a burning trail of fire! Returning the earlier melodious flavour, 'Holding On' is melodic power metal at its finest - infectious, catchy, and one hundred percent sing a long-able. And sadly, the album has to come to an end, but the final hurrah is a fucking good one! 'I, The Deceiver' picking up the pace and chugging forth with purpose and intent - the melodic edge at the sharpest its been all album. Not to mention the infectious and addictive levels too! A cracking end to a cracking album - an album that hasn't actually finished, as you do have the replay button to press...    
Overall, a superb album by one of power metals best bands, Brainstorm deliver a fast paced and highly infectious forty five minute gallop.    
Review By Iron Mathew Collins    
Reviewed For Metal Gods TV