Review: Frozen Land – Out Of The Dark

Frozen Land - Out Of The Dark Massacre Records

No sign of the morning coming

You’ve been left on your own

Like a Frozen Land in the dark

Power metal is one of those genres you either love or hate. You’re either on the team that thinks it’s overly dramatic and corny or you’re in the camp that revels in its admitted absurdity. Bands like Helloween, Stratovarius, Queensryche, Gamma Ray, and Blind Guardian are pretty much universally loved while their modern counterparts, notably Sabaton, Alestorm, and Powerwolf have as many critics as they do staunch defenders. One of the bands among the new wave of power metal is Finnish band Frozen Land.

Like any power metal release worth its salt, the production is crystal clear, vibrant, and elevates the excellent performances from the group’s extremely talented lineup. While it’s nothing that will be considered genre-defining, this young band is really carving out a path for themselves and there is clearly a lot of maturing and growth that’s happening along the way.

The chemistry between the rhythm section (bassist Aleksi Salomaa and drummer Aki Kuokkanen) holds the band together tightly and saves the music from being all over the place. The vocals as well from Tony Meloni invoke memories of power metal’s past while highlighting his own talent as a lead.

The keys from Antti Sorsa might be a spot of contention for some listeners. While the playing itself is very competent and delivered in an extravagant fashion fitting of power metal, some might say the keys do overstay their welcome at some points on the record. In my personal opinion, that certainly isn’t unfounded but the keys are a welcome addition when they’re used tastefully. Power metal is the genre of excess (or is that hair metal?) and the inclusion of the keys work in that aspect. The guitar work by Tuomas Hirvonen is the standout personally. A lot of those hooks and riffs really bring a lot of excitement and enjoyment to the experience and are essentially what any power metal fan would come to hear.

The album opens and closes with the biggest risks “King’s A Bitch” and the esoteric “Señorita”. These songs will either hit or strike out depending on the listener. While I wasn’t a massive fan of the opening track, the album itself balances out well after and only goes up from there. The closing track is definitely the most unique and frankly ridiculous track on the record. While it’s silly and at times nonsensical, that is admittedly what the band is going for and more power to them honestly. The band is having fun so why shouldn’t the listener?

The standout cuts to listen to personally are second track “The Prophecy”, and two of the later entries “White Lightning” and “Out of the Dark”. There is only really one track which feels like an outright dud and that is the ballad number “Don’t You Ever Leave Me,” which just falls flat under the weight of the abundance of clichés.

Frozen Land’s second full-length effort Out of the Dark is a really fun listen. It is a little bloated and gets unfocused at bits but always manages to wrangle everything back together to deliver a good time. Power metal fans will love it, everyone else….. At least check out the top tracks.

Top tracks: “White Lightning”, “Out of the Dark”, and “The Prophecy”

3.5/5 Flaming Toilets ov Hell

Out Of The Dark is out now via Massacre Records.

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