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Axenstar
Aftermath

Company: Ice Warrior Records
Release: 2011
Genre: Power
Reviewer: IcedMojo

  • Worthy of a spin or three



  • Sweden's power metal outfit, Axenstar, is back after five long years. Their last record, The Final Requiem came out in 2006, so fans have long been waiting on Aftermath, their fifth full length release. In between releases, the band has replaced their drummer to Adam Lindberg, one of their guitarists to Jens Klovegård, and their record label, Ice Warrior Records. Vocalist, keyboardist Magnus Winterwild has now added bass duties to his repertoire, at least for this record. So, as you can see, the band took a bit of an overhaul in their downtime, but the sound did not get overhauled, yet they improved it. One such improvement is the ageed but quality vocal stylings of Magnus Winterwild [who is a phenominal bass player]. Another difference is the speedy and hardhitting drumwork of Adam Lindberg. Mix that with great production, and the finished product is Aftermath.

    Axenstar drops the metal hammer with tracks such as Dogs of War, The Escape, Agony & Dead Kingdom, and the strong finish Forever The Pain, which starts very sinister and kicks in to high gear soon after. Tracks like the title track make the listener wonder if a Dragonforce album was accidentally slipped into their player. Here, the keyboards are so prodominent it takes away from the song. The other 4 tracks were just there to fill an album. Let's not get it twisted, new and previous fans of the band will enjoy Aftermath, it has great parts, and for the longtime fans, it is darker than before, and if nothing else, you will listen to it for the novelty that is Axenstar. The foursome is still capable of writing catchy songs with prominent leads, breaks and strong melodies. Still power metal but with more progressive influences, a tried and true formula that makes the group stand out in their genre. I just feel that after 5 years, it should have been stellar, not mediocre.

    Without mincing any more words, Aftermath is a decent release. I still hold a soft spot for the 2003 release Far from Heaven, but Aftermath will certainly appeal to a wider audience overall with its polished sound and solid performance. This album will not take the world by storm, however, it is worthy of a spin or three.


    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

    Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

    Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

    The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



    ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: AXENSTAR
    CD
    TITLE BAND
    DOR
    REVIEWER DATE
    AftermathAxenstar
    2011
    Anthony Burke6/30/2011
    Far From HeavenAxenstar
    2003
    Anthony Burke12/30/2003
    The InquisitionAxenstar
    2005
    Eric Compton6/16/2005


    ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: AXENSTAR

    No Summary reviews currently exist for them.


    ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: AXENSTAR
    INTERVIEW BAND INTERVIEWER DATE
    Magnus WinterwildAxenstarAnthony Burke2/20/2004


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