Gambling with the Devil
Helloween - Gambling with the Devil - 2007 - SPV
|Track Listing:1. Crack The Ridle|
2. Kiil It
3. The Saints
4. As Long As I Fall
5. Paint A New World
6. Final Fortune
7. The Bells Of The 7 Hells
8. Fallen To Pieces
9. I. M. E.
10. Can Do It
12. Heaven Tells No Lies
Admittedly, Helloween fell off my radar after the early Seven Keys albums and departure of guitarist Kai Hansen. Uber-vocalist Michael Kiske left after a couple ill-received albums and a string of Andi Deris-led cds through the '90s went unnoticed and unbought by me while progenies like Blind Guardian', Gamma Ray, Stratovarius, and Edguy came along to usurp the power metal crown and my attention--a classic example of the student defeating the master. The aforementioned bands took melodic speed riffing and higher, clean vocals beyond Helloween's developement. Rabbit Don't Come Easy (2003) caught my ear enough to remember the band existed where the horrible KotSK-The Legacy (2005) left me hoping they would just go away or move into more of an AOR-progressive direction and join up with Masterplan. More pronounced religious theming didn't help either.
Gambling with the Devil (2007) sold me on the premise that melodic speed hadn't exhausted all it's possibilities--guitars sear and the drums excite in the aggressive power of 'Kill It', the glorious power of "The Saints", the inspiring power of "Paint A New World" and the lighter 'Dreambound'. Andi, you've made enough of a mark on this one that I can believe Helloween are worthy to be grand supporters of the lofty power metal tower again. I am reborn under the baptizing fire of the savage pupmkin masters.
Bottom Line: For Euro-power fans, this one's not a gamble to pick-up.
On a side note, the computer generated covers Helloween have been using are just plain ugly.