After a three year absence, EDGUY have been back in the recording studio, and to celebrate their 25th anniversary have produced Monuments. The album, though, is not all brand new – there are just five new songs on the record, with the rest a compilation of the band’s greatest hits since their formation in 1992.
All of the new tracks come at the start of the record, and it is clear to see that the recipe has not changed at all for the German group. It kicks off with Ravenblack, which begins with a haunting solo from the guitars of Jens Ludwig, before building up pace courtesy of Tobias Exxel’s bass. While a lot of power metal bands tend to have a strong emphasis on the vocals and keyboards, there doesn’t seem to be the same emphasis from EDGUY, and the track sounds more like traditional metal. That doesn’t detract from the quality though, as it is a fantastic opening track.
The second track, Wrestle the Devil, is much heavier and has a faster tempo, but again the vocals are not what you’d expect from a power metal group, and in this particular track there are times you wonder if you’re listening to Bruce Dickinson. Regardless, it is another pleasant track to listen to, and really captures the essence of EDGUY. Moving on to the following track, Open Sesame, there are more power metal elements starting to appear. The intro is again set at a fats tempo, and is very similar to the intro of Bring It! by Swedish power metal heroes HAMMERFALL. In fact, the best way to describe this particular song would be if you combined HAMMERFALL with IRON MAIDEN, and the end result is superb.
A quick word on the final two new tracks, Landmarks and The Mountaineer; the first increases speed once more, venturing into the classic heavy metal sound of the 70s and 80s, though this time vocalist Tobias Sammet manages to make his voice sound more like Brian Johnson of AC/DC. The overall sound is definitely verging more towards power metal, and that is backed up by the latter track, which finally puts some emphasis on the keyboards, which feature prominently right from the start, and the overall sound package is solid once more.
As for the rest of the album, it is a great opportunity for new listeners to find out exactly what EDGUY are all about and how the band have developed across the last 25 years, while those who are already familiar with the band can reminisce and hear all of the songs they want to in one complete album.
The new material that the group have recorded is phenomenal, and the band have shown that they have not lost their touch one bit, and Monuments is an excellent way for the band to mark their 25 year anniversary.
Monuments is out now via Nuclear Blast Records.
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