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Album Reviews : Savage Circus – Of Doom and Death

By on March 3, 2010

OfDoomAndDeath190xFollowing in the footsteps of Blind Guardian‘s post “Tales from the Twilight World” era, Savage Circus return with their second full length album “Of Doom and Death”. Having a strong Blind Guardian influence due to the fact that lead singer Jens Carlsson (Persuader) sounds exactly like Hansi Kürsch, while the band execute Blind Guardian’s early 90’s material to a tee. It’s no wonder these guys have been dubbed Blind Guardian clones.

To be fair, Savage Circus have created a somewhat unique sound within the power metal spectrum, yet it’s hard to walk away from the fact that these guys sound pretty much like Blind Guardian. Subsequently,  former Blind Guardian drummer Thoman Stauch started Savage Circus while he was still in Blind Guardian, but due to health problems had to leave both Blind Guardian and Savage Circus and the band has essentially become a new hybrid over the past 5 years.

The new album hits all the right buttons for speed metal freaks. Powerful introductions, fast double kicks and the addition of soaring vocals adds all the great characteristic of a solid power metal release. There are a few melodic shifts to break up the albums intense speed, but essentially, it’s a speed metal fans wet dream.

Jens Carlsson does a great job to imitate Hansi Kürsch‘s vocal arrangement, but sadly there is little variation, or lack of thereof. The delivery is solid and holds up to the man himself, yet throughout the whole experience I didn’t hear much change in tune.

Many obsessed Blind Guardian fans will surely get a kick out of this treat, yet many wanting more will surely lose interest in this squawking parrot. Musically, the album mimics elements of Blind Guardian’s “Tales from the Twilight World” and “Imaginations from the Otherside” time period with a few lavish levels of layering. It imitates Blind Guardian’s sound respectfully, but doesn’t entirely counterfeit it.  I give kudos to guitarists Emil Norberg and Piet Sielck for offering a unique and fitting sound to the album. It’s not over the top nor cheesy. It’s the perfect blend of power and speed. Drumming has essentially stayed its course, as new drummer Mike Terrana, (Axel Rudi Pell) fits into Thoman Stauch‘s shoes quite well.

I wish I could say more about this album, but sadly I can’t. There are some fantastic songs on the album with many passing the 7 minute mark. I wasn’t extremely blown away, yet I did have fun listening to this album and will surely go back for more in the near future. If anything, I’d say this is a major improvement over the band’s first album “Dreamland Manor”, as this time round it’s not a blatant Blind Guardian clone.   If you love the combination of speed metal and early Blind Guardian, this album is for you. If you are looking for a bit of variation and finesse, I urge you to look elsewhere. 7/10

For fans of: Persuader, Blind Guardian, Iron Savior

Band: Savage Circus
Album: Of Doom and Death
Year: 2009
Genre: Power/Speed Metal
Label: Dockyard 1
Origin: Germany
http://savage-circus.com

Tracklisting:

1. Of Doom and Death <- Reviewer’s choice
2. The Ordeal
3. Devil’s Spawn
4. Chasing the Rainbow
5. Empire
6. Ballad of Susan
7. Legend of Leto II
8. From the Ashes
9. Dreamland” (Instrumental)

About

Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.