"Hall of Flames" (Locomotive; 2005)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

"Hall of Flames" is a double CD collection of the best of Edguy ... and that's a good thing because this German band has got a lot of "best" stuff.

The first CD is really the "greatest hits" section. On this CD are thirteen tracks of great Edguy material, stemming from their previous releases. It's a nice line-up although, as with any greatest hits collection, there are always those who would argue that the best material was left off while less-than-spectacular material was included. We won't be nit-picky here: suffice to say that Disc 1 rocks, although we think there could have been more than the 40 minutes included.

Disc 2 entails the rare side of Edguy, including not only bonus tracks but unreleased material, video clips and computer wallpapers. Disc 2 is not only an interesting look at music from the band you may have not heard before, but a solid CD on its own. Some of the tunes here sound a little dated ("The Devil & The Servant") but that's a minor complaint. Hell, man, it's a greatest hits CD; some of the material is supposed to sound dated.

The CD ends with three live tracks: "Avantasia," "Walk on Fighting" and "Wake Up the King." This live trilogy ends the set with a bang and the surprising note that Edguy can pull off their sophisticated music really well in a live setting.

And, actually, the CD doesn't end there. Also included is a video from "All the Clowns" and a live video performance of "The Headless Game." 

"Hall of Flames" is a great intro to a great band for those unfamiliar with their work and a great collection for those who have followed the band for awhile. 

For more information, check out www.edguy.net

"Hellfire Club" (Nuclear Blast; 2004)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Unlike their "Theater of Salvation," Edguy's "Hellfire Club" has the necessary edge to pull it out of the murky, never-ending river of power metal bands that all sound the same. 

This is interesting for a number of reasons. 1) The band hasn't changed. This is exactly the same line-up as the 2000 release reviewed below. 2) The music is the same style. "Hellfire Club" is unquestionably the same genre of metal as "Theater of Salvation." It's just that "Hellfire Club" is crisper, edgier and much more energetic. 3) The music may be the same but, for my money, the songwriting here is much, much better. The songs are better constructed, they flow better and they rock harder. They each stand out, rather than blending all together. 4) Vocalist Tobias Sammet still sound a lot like Bruce Dickinson ... but, then, that's never been a bad thing.

Standout tunes include the truly epic, 10+ minute "The Piper Never Dies," the hysterically-titled and lyricked "Lavatory Love Machine" and the driving "Under the Moon." In fact, the only track I could have done without is the 30-second "Lucifer in Love" which sounds like the soundtrack to a big-budget porno flick. I guess it fits in the overall scheme of things but it's a little disconcerting on its own.

Fans of Edguy's previous work will be thrilled with "Hellfire Club" and those who were disappointed with the band's earlier material will be pleased with what they find here. Edguy has recorded several albums between the release of "Theater of Salvation" and "Hellfire Club" but "Theater" didn't leave me with enough interest to pursue the others. "Hellfire Club" does. That says a lot.

Edguy: Tobias Sammet - vocals; Jens Ludwig - guitar; Dirk Sauer - guitar; Tobias Exxel - bass; Felix Bohnke - drums.

For more information, check out www.edguy.net

"Theater of Salvation" (Metal Blade; 2000)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Edguy are a band that can sound like Iron Maiden, Helloween, Gamma Ray or Styx. Yeah, you read that right - Styx. 

The eleven songs on this CD are, for the most part, progressive power tunes in the vein of the above-mentioned Helloween or Gamma Ray. Sometimes, as on the first track, they can sound a little rougher - like Iron Maiden. At other times, they load on the progressive sound, as on track 4, "Land of the Miracle," wherein they sound a little closer to Styx.

The vocals are always the soaring, epic kind and they, too, sound a little like Maiden's Bruce Dickinson.

"Theater of Salvation's" not a bad album by any measure, but it's not really a great record by any measure, either. Nothing hereon will have you reaching to crank up the volume but chances are you won't be bored either. Technically, It's pretty good but it lacks somewhat in the originality department.

Edguy: Tobias Sammet - vocals; Jens Ludwig - guitar; Dirk Sauer - guitar; Tobias Exxel - bass; Felix Bohnke - drums.

For more information, check out http://www.edguy.nu/

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 2005 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 17 Jul 2022 13:29:12 -0400.