Rating: 87/100

Reviewed by: Peter Laursen, August '04
Label: Sanctuary Records
Style: Heavy Metal

Beyond The Gates

I don’t think Joacim Cans; vocalist of Swedish band HammerFall needs any presentation. So let’s go on and get to the music. “Beyond The Gates”, is the first solo album from the HammerFall singer, and the result is a superb slice of dark, heavy, and very melodic metal that has come out under the simple banner of Cans, and a very pleasant surprise to me. 

The Gate Keepers are:
Joacim Cans - Lead and Backing Vocals
Metal Mike Chlasciak - Lead & Rhythm Guitars
Stefan Elmgren - Lead & Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards
Mat Sinner - Bass & Backing Vocals
Mark Zonder - Drums
Daniele Sorviano – Keyboards

Special Guests: 
Gus G - Lead Guitar on "Beyond The Gates"
Danny Gill - Lead Guitar on "Dreams".
Background vocalists: Oscar Dronjak, Mats Rendlert, Joacim "Lill" Lundberg, Jonatan Nordström, Hilda Lerme and Jenny Gustafsson.

I have heard people say that you can’t compare Cans with HammerFall, but I honestly don’t share their opinion, Cans is just a little bit slower more dark, and more heavy. Just listen to the title track, and you will know what I mean. It took a few spins to get into this CD, but now it’s just getting better and better.

Cans sounds melodic on tracks like; “Fields Of Yesterday”, “The Key” and “Dreams”. Dark and heavy on; “Beyond The Gates” and “Back To Hell”. There’s even a ballad to be found here; “Forever Ends”. I hated it a first, but now it has grown on me. Congratulations Mr. Cans, for a job well done. I wish you all the best in the future.