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Firewind - The Premonition
Thessaloniki is not only the second-largest city of the Greek region of Macedonia, it is also the city where on September 12 1980, Kostas Karamitroudis saw the light of day for the first time. He would later pick up the electric guitar and display his skills in bands like Dream Evil, Mystic Prophecy, Nightrage and Arch Enemy. Although his current band, Firewind, was born on U.S. soil, the foundation is as Greek as it can be. The latest release of this band made me scream of joy when I found it on my doormat. Let’s see what Kostas (yes, of course it’s Gus G.!) and company have in store for us!

Wow, I mean, just wow. I think we all remember the song ‘Blackened’ from Metallica’s …And Justice For All album. Well, ‘Into The Fire’, the first song that we come across on Firewind’s latest effort, has that same feeling of epicness over it. That’s quite something, to get track one to already convert that kind of energy into music.

There’s all kinds of metal tracks on The Premonition. There’s the 'normal' power metal songs like ‘Head Up High’ and ‘Mercenary Man’, but it also contains some exceptional surprises. Take ‘Remembered’, for instance. The intro reminds of some really heavy thrash metal band and the song takes you back to the times when Bay Area thrash was the most heavy shit in the entire world. Combine that feeling with a melodic chorus and you get an amazing song.
The Premonition contains a lot of riffs that have a progressive feel about them, which is a good thing. Even with the more obvious tracks, you never get the feeling that you’re listening to a band that repeats itself time and time again throughout the years.

Apollo’s vocals are very powerful and full, which definitely contribute to the uniqueness of the sound. Forget the squeaking vocals of any terrible power metal band you’ve ever heard in your entire life and embrace these. Trust me, you won’t regret it.

Nothing wrong with squeaking vocalists, though. Because drummer Mark Cross (ex-Helloween, ex-Metalium) developed his skills in the German heavy metal scene, and it shows. He’s a superb rhythmic player, with an excellent sense for well-placed fill-ins. The transitions from slow to fast are also done really well, which makes the record as a whole all the more enjoyable.

Enough talking. Any fan of melodic power metal with twists of thrash and speed metal should be able to appreciate, if not love, this record. It’s a warm recommendation from a power metal fan who feared that the genre had reached its peak. The Premonition can be surpassed, but not by just any random band.
Firewind - The Premonition
89/1001Details Century Media Records
Released on Tuesday Mar 25th, 2008
Melodic Power Metal

Writer @Bastian Blackrain on Monday Mar 17th, 2008

Tags: #Firewind
Tracklisting 1. Into the Fire
2. Head Up High
3. Mercenary Man
4. Angels Forgive Me
5. Remembered
6. My Loneliness
7. Circle of Life
8. The Silent Code
9. Maniac (Michael Sembello cover)
10. Life Foreclosed
Line up Apollo Papathanasio - vocals
Gus G. - guitars
Petros Christo - bass
Bob Katsionis - keyboards
Mark Cross - drums