Crystall Ball – Déjà Voodoo

The ninth album of this Swiss melodic hardrock formation and I am curious if there have been some improvements. Their 2015 album ‘Liferider’ was in my opinion an average album which I gave 67 points out of 100.  With Steven Mageney the band has  a singer with a recognizable style, rather clean but with a rough edge.

The title track opens with hard pounding drums and steady guitar riffing. The mid-tempo track is rather heavy and the refrain easy to sing a long with. Next is “Director’s Cut” which is more uptempo. Nice guitar harmonies, raw sounding riffs and a good melody make this one of my favorites. I hope the band can continue with this high quality songs. Next is “Suspended”, unfortunately the track has a more cliche refrain and also with “Never A Guarantee” they can’t sustain the high level.

Like on their 2015 album there are a few too many average, rather cliche sounding hardrock tracks with soso refrains. “Reaching Out”, “Time and Tide” and “Without a Net” are three  that don’t make my uric very hot. In between however, the ballad “Home Again” is a nice resting point, but really enthusiastic I become again with “To Freedom and Progress”, a variable track with a strong riff and a nice built up and an eastern sounding intermezzo. Uptempo song “Full Disclosure” is a bonus on the digipak, this also counts for the rather slow and groovy track “Fool’s Parade”.

In general I have to conclude that the riffs sound rather heavy and I think that producer Stefan Kaufmann is certainly responsable for that. Together with the 2 openers also “Dr. Hell No” is one of  my favorites, the riff reminds me sometimes of Ozzy with Zakk Wylde and also Dio slipped through my mind. All in all I think this is a good album for melodic rock fans that like a rougher edge, a nice groove and refrains to sing a long with. Fans will certainly not be disappointed.

Tracklist:

01. Déjà Voodoo
02. Director’s Cut
03. Suspended
04. Never A Guarantee
05. Reaching Out
06. Home Again
07. To Freedom and Progress
08. Time and Tide
09. Without a Net
10. Full Disclosure*
11.  Fool’s Parade*
12. Dr. Hell No
13. To Be With You Once More

* Digipak Bonus

 

Playing time: 46:57

Release date: 2 September 2016

Label: Massacre Records

Website: www.crystal-ball.ch

Reinier de Vries
About Reinier de Vries 188 Articles
Once a metal head, always a metalhead. My parents thought it would only be a period, but they were wrong. I quit to explain the beauty of metal music to others that are not into metal, because it is something you can't tell in words... It is like explaining to a teetotaller why a cold beer is so nice on a hot day... I started with bands like Accept, Metal Church, Iron Maiden and Metallica in the eighties and I think I will still listen to them when I'm stone deaf and old...

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