Friday, December 7, 2012
Yngwie J. Malmsteen - Spellbound (2012)
But do not expect Yngwie to wear himself out on the vocals. Just like in "Relentless", the instrumentals has the majority of space on this record. A pretty big majority. Only three out of the thirteen songs have lyrics in them. In other words, Yngwie is letting the riffing do the talking instead of the vocals. A seemingly good decision since Yngwie is not so familiar with the singing. But I got to say that he does a really good work on the singing section, especially on the slow and delicate "Let Sleeping Dogs Lie". His voice is ruff at some spots but with some work I think that Yngwie will master that too. The other two songs ("Repent" and "Poisoned Minds") are good but nothing really special.
Well, how good are the instrumentals then? They are what you would expect from Yngwie. A solid mix of crazy ass shredding and slower, but more well composed, song structures. And the sound is, as usual, a neo-classical sound. A sound that Yngwie masters extremely well. But overall there are 3 instrumentals that is standing out from the rest. The title track has probably the best and unique riff in the entire album and the speed on that song is nice. Then we have "Majestic 12 suite 1, 2 & 3", a nine minute long epic that holds surprisingly well for a song of its size. Otherwise instrumentals that is around this length tends to be pretty boring and repetitive. The third and last instrumental on "Spellbound" that deserves a recognition is the album closure "Requiem For The Lost Souls". This song ends the album in a brilliant way with its beautiful sound and well organised structure. But there is one more instrumental that I would like to point out. "Iron Blues" is something I wish was never even in this album. I mean really? Blues? You may have taken a bit more than you can chew Yngwie. Please, no more of that kind of music in the future.
All in all I feel that "Spellbound" is the best album Yngwie has done since "Perpetual Flame". "Spellbound" has some really interesting instrumentals and the fact that Yngwie made literally everything for himself makes this album even more impressive. It is not a fantastic album but clearly above average. But for next album I would like to see less instrumentals and more of Yngwie's voice (if he is going to sing more in future albums).
Songs worthy of recognition: Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, Requiem For The Lost Souls, Spellbound
Rating: 7/10 Repents