Thursday, April 19, 2018

Thoughts from a metal mind: Refaster, the DragonForce album tsunami

About a week ago, I came across an article about DragonForce, claiming that they would release a new record. Not just any record, a remastered and remixed version of "The Power Within", officially called "Re-powered Within". 5 seconds later, the face palm was inserted. Seriously, why is this necessary?

I normally do not have a problem with bands doing remasters of their old albums. It is often pointless, but if the band feels like they need update their music, maybe get a new generation of metal fans to experience it, I am not gonna be one who say it is wrong. Most of the remasters are of really old albums, celebrating some sort of anniversary, so it at least has a reason to get an upgrade.

Holy crap, what an upgrade!

This however, does not have a single valid reason to be "upgraded". "The Power Within" is a perfectly fine record, not without flaws, but none of those flaws lays in the production. I actually listened to the album again to understand if there were something I was missing (I even compared it to the two studio albums that was released after it), but there was nothing wrong with the thing. It is a standard DragonForce record that was the start of their journey with singer Marc Hudson. I just cannot understand why anyone would feel the need to remaster this six year old album.

This is what guitarist Herman Li said in the press release

The result is a clearer, more powerful sound. The fans will get to hear the music in better detail, bringing out parts they couldn't hear so well before, and injecting new excitement into the songs we love even more now.

Okay, so do these songs really need more excitement and more power? This is DragonForce we are talking about after all, not some... slow ass doom metal band.

If they just had to remaster an album, I was kind of hoping for it to be any of the first couple of albums, but then I found out that they already did that... IN 2010!!! Both "Valley of The Damned" and "Sonic Firestorm" was remastered when they were seven and six years old, which I kind of understand since they were more low budget, but still, have some fucking patience please. Even Metallica knows that a remaster should not be made under ten years after release. Everyone knows that the production of "...And Justice For All" is utter crap, but Metallica has restrained themselves (or simply did not have the time, either way) and waited 30 years to actually do one (will be released later this year, finally).

But that was just the tip of the iceberg, because I am now convinced that the band (or possibly their management) is trying to cram out every single penny from their fans. With the release of this remaster, DragonForce will now have released a new album in five straight years. Yes, FIVE STRAIGHT YEARS! Besides the two studio efforts ("Maximum Overload" in 2014 and "Reaching Into Infinity" in 2017), we have the live album "In The Line of Fire... Larger Than Live" in 2015 and the compilation album "Killer Elite: The Hits, The Highs, The Vids" in 2016.

I also looked at the comment section of the article I came across, and just as I expected, about 99% of the commenters questioned this release, so this is definitely not something the fans has been asking for either. As said, this is completely unnecessary fluff that should be (and probably will be) completely ignored.

This is complete exposure suffocation from the band, it is an album tsunami that hopefully is reaching its end phase. Now, obviously it is quite easy to just ignore some of these releases, but it is worrying to see a band like this focusing on projects like this.  Just focus on creating new music, and perfecting your live performance guys, that is all we ask you to do, do not overcomplicate things. Do not make me loose faith on you DragonForce, I like you and your unique, over the top power metal style, and I want to keep doing that for a long time. So do not disappoint me, stop your addiction now, and take a year off, you deserve it.

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