The seventh full-length studio album by the legendary German Hard Rock/Heavy/Power Metal band.
Axel Rudi Pell is a longstanding German Metal band playing in the classic 80s style of Dio and other similar bands, with excellent guitarwork courtesy of the band's core and founder, Axel Rudi Pell. They've apparently had a very long string of lineup changes, with about four or five different vocalists, before settling on their current one, Johnny Gioeli. It was on this album that he made his debut in the band.
The album starts off with a short intro piece before kicking off into the high-speed double bass cooker "Pay the Price." It's a standard Power Metal song, with an extremely catchy chorus. It does well to open the album and introduce us to the band. Next up is the 8-minute "Carousel", one of the best songs on the album. It's misplaced, with a shockingly simplistic riff and a catchy chorus. Most bands would end a song like this after maybe 4 minutes, but Axel Rudi Pell lets the music play, showing their considerable musical talents and creating long songs that never bore you, if you're into this style of music. "Carousel" is a perfect example; sailing on for 8 whole minutes, rocking the whole way with such simple riffs and musicianship, but never becoming dull or trite.
"Ashes from the Oath" is another album highlight, starting off as a moody ballad, showing off Gioeli's considerable vocal talents for a good 4 or 5 minutes and delivering some killer lyrics and guitarwork, before speeding up to a huge hurricane of speedy riffs and blazing solos in the last half of the song. Absolutely splendid. The highlight of the album.
"Ride the Rainbow" is the shortest song here, a catchy little rocker with a great chorus and explosive soloing.
"The Gates of the Seven Seals" is a great song, coming in at almost 11 minutes. The riff that carries throughout the song is again very simple, yet great. The chorus is extremely catchy, and the whole thing just bleeds 'epicness'. This song revokes the great 80s Metal bands again, in a tour de force of spectacular guitar and drumwork. Check it out if you enjoy Metal at least a little bit.
"Oceans of Time" is the last truly great song here, one of the best ballads in Metal music. The solo is, again, incredible, and this beautiful piece of music goes on for 7 minutes before coming to an end, like the tides on the beach at sunset.
"Prelude to the Moon" is a Neoclassical sounding instrumental, with only the guitars and keyboards throughout it's 5 minute duration.
"Living on the Wildside" and "Holy Creatures" is also good songs.
Overall, this is a great album from a very good band, with some of the best Metal songs you’ve ever heard! Highly, highly recommended!!
Steamhammer/SPV, 1998 (SPV 085-18142 CD). Made in Germany. Re-press.
1. Slaves Of The Twilight 1:50
2. Pay The Price 6:17
3. Carousel 8:00
4. Ashes From The Oath 9:36
5. Ride The Rainbow 4:54
6. The Gates Of The Seven Seals 10:37
7. Oceans Of Time 7:46
8. Prelude To The Moon (Opus#3 Menuetto Prelugio) 5:04
9. Living On The Wildside 4:52
10. Holy Creatures 6:33
Total playing time: 65:29 min.