(8/10) Nothing new at Axel Rudi Pell. And that’s good. There aren’t that many band/artists which are releasing records with such a consistency and on such a high level. Axel Rudi Pell belongs to that group. No doubt. After he released two records with the German band Steeler (by the way: don’t miss the unique Steeler show at the Bang Your Head festival this year) Pell started with his own band. In all those years, 25 years in total, I think it was, and still is, the passion and the capabilities of Axel Rudi Pell which makes him so consistent.
Now it's time for album number 15. And it wasn't the easiest period to produce the new record, since drummer Mike Terrena left the band in 2013. Lucky enough Pell found with Bob Rondinelli (Rainbow, Black Sabbath) a great replacer behind the drumkit.
What you get served with “Into the storm” is classic heavy metal including great wide arching melodious compositions. The melodies makes the song easy to listen to and on the other hand it’s the more complex guitar play of Pell with great riffs and soli, which creates the typival ARP trademarks.
Also the length of the new material is typical. Most of the tracks are between 5-6 minutes and of course there is also an epical song. This time it’s the 10 minutes long title track which is also the ending of this album. It's a midtempo song and reflects Pell's passion for Rainbow and Dio the best. Actually some parts reminded me a bit to "Gates of Babylon", esp. since there are almost some oriental meoldy lines in the instrumetal parts. Next to this highlight there are more great songs on "Into the storm". There is e.g. the melodic rocker "Long way to go" with great vocals from Johnny Gioeli, who did also this time a phantastic job. Speed increases with "Buring chains". It's not only that the song is fast and heavy, it also comes with a classic rock approach. "Changing times" is another good example of a great melody combined with the heavy riffs, while "Touching heaven" starts as a ballad before a powerful drum beat pushes the song forward. What surprised me was the emotional version of "Hey hey my my". The song can be seen as the ballad of the album and eventhough it's a cover version it fits perfect into the context of the album - garnished with another great solo of Pell.
“Into the storm” became another good and solid album from ARP. Thumb up.
- The inquisitorial procedure (intro)
- Tower of lies
- Long way to go
- Burning chains
- When truth hurts
- Changing times
- Touching heaven
- High above
- Hey hey my my (Neil Young cover)
- Into the storm
Genre: Heavy Metal