Power of Metal.dk Review

Ashes of Ares
Ashes of Ares
Style: Heavy U.S. Power Metal
Release date: 6 September, 2013
Playing time: 46:21

There are singers you always link with a certain band and without that singer, the band isn't the same. Iron Maiden without Bruce, Judas Priest without Rob, Nightwish without Tara and so on... For me that is also the case with Iced Earth, Stu Block is an awesome vocalist, but Iced Earth without Matthew Barlow, just isn't the same anymore.

Matthew Barlow has together with Freddie Vidales (ex Iced Earth) and Van Williams (ex Nevermore) founded Ashes of Ares. His recognizable voice makes you immediately think of Iced Earth and although there are musical similarities, the music on this album is different. In general the songs are a little bit slower, not as melodic, the riffs are a tad heavier and the songs are more epic.

"The Messenger" gives you an Iced Earth feeling, but that is because of the vocals, "On Warriors’s Wings" is a slower very emotional track with excellent singing. After that "Punishment" takes over, a mid-tempo track with a heavy riff and driving drums. With an ex Nevermore member, it won't be a surprise that some parts on this album do remind of that band as well. "This is My Hell" is an epic track with a very calm start. For progressive metal fans the track "Dead Man's Plight" can be recommended, while thrash fans will like "What I Am" for sure, mostly because of the heavy guitar riffing and the fast tempo.

Due to the singing of Matthew, and the participation of ex members of Iced Earth and Nevermore and maybe also because of the production of Jim Morris the album breaths Iced Earth and Nevermore. Fans of those bands will like this for certain and because of the variety in songs this album beats the last Iced Earth album with Matthew on vocals "Something Wicked part 2" by lengths. A good album!

01. The Messenger
02. Move the Chains
03. On Warrior's Wings
04. Punishment
05. This is My Hell
06. Dead Man's Plight
07. Chalice of Man
08. The Answer
09. What I Am
10. The One Eyed King
Label: Nuclear Blast Gmbh
Distribution: Sony Music (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Reinier de Vries
Date: 31 August, 2013
Website: www.ashesofares.com