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Monday, Aug. 4, 2008

Firewind

The Premonition (Century Media)

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Do you still thrill to ’80s-era Whitesnake, Dio, Queensryche and Iron Maiden? Then Firewind should slot neatly into your head-banging collection. What this Greek powerhouse lacks in originality, it makes up for with a commitment to keeping melodic hard rock and heavy metal alive in an increasingly disparate musical universe. With leather-lunged Apollo Papathanasio on vocals (think David Coverdale meets Bruce Dickinson) and guitarist Gus G. slicing through the speakers with bombastic solos and massive power chords, Firewind flaunts familiarity. Dark and heavy cuts like “Into the Fire” and “The Silent Code” complement less-intense tracks such as “Life Foreclosed” and “My Loneliness.” Anthems like “Head Up High” and “Remembered” sound ready for arenas.

An ill-conceived cover of Michael Sembello’s “Maniac” from the Flashdance soundtrack notwithstanding, The Premonition offers a refreshing take on a genre that once ruled the world.


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