"The Power Cosmic" (Nuclear Blast; 1999)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Is Bal-Sagoth epic Viking metal brought forward to the future? Probably so. Bal-Sagoth's "The Power Cosmic" has a story line similar to, but not exactly the same as, Dio's "Magica." The same fantasy and grand imagery in "Magica" is used to convey the story in "The Power Cosmic." Actually, now that I think of it, Bal-Sagoth is more like a European version of Virgin Steele; don't laugh - because I know very well that, despite Virgin Steele's American heritage, they owe their success to European audiences. And don't let the fact that Bal-Sagoth hail from old-world England steer you away from the European comparisons either.

The verses of "The Power Cosmic" have a definite flavor of Children Of Bodom although there are plenty of symphonic and elaborately ornate parts that belie any comparison to melodic death metal. The vocals are very aggressive in the vein of Swedish melodic death metal, but with its own understated yet somehow still dramatic flair.

"The Power Cosmic" is Bal-Sagoth's fourth full-length CD, but you wouldn't know it as their first three CDs seem nearly impossible to get. Bal-Sagoth is definitely a band worth looking into.

"The Power Cosmic" was produced, engineered, and mixed by Mags.

Bal-Sagoth is Byron on vocals, Jonny Maudling on keyboards, Chris Maudling on guitar, Dave Mackintosh on drums, and Mark Greenwell on bass.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright 2003 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 25 Mar 2018 16:17:36 -0500 .