Saturday, June 4, 2016

Yngwie Malmsteen : "World On Fire"

This is the first album I have paid attention to where Yngwie is doing everything. He plays bass and sings on it with , Mark Ellis handling the drums .  The bass tone is better than I thought it would be. He doesn't  cover much in the way of new ground with his guitar playing. It's really fast and clean sweep picking, but at this point it's been done to death if you listen to metal. Vocally he is also better than I thought, I would prefer Ripper because Yngwie's style of power metal belting is a little bland. He can carry a tune and sing in key, saying in more of a modest mid range. The second instrumental "Abandon" is a little better than the song before it. "Top Down, Foot Down" is typical shred fest that you know you are in for at this point. By the fourth song almost all of his solos sound the same to me. He indulges in a little more melody, though with the song title I would think he would follow the more up tempo pace set by the Van Halen like bass and drums. I remember as a kid liking songs like "I'll See the Light Tonight" and "You Don't Remember I'll Never Forget". In fact I even caught him on the 'Odyssey" tour, "Eclipse" was the last album I bought. So at one point I had more of a stomach for this sort of thing.

There is more punch to "Lost in the Machine". Vocally it's a mixed bag, some phrases he sounds like he could run out of breath at any minute, others he sounds stronger than the first song. The solo that keeps playing over the chorus toward the end of the song seems un-needed. Here is my sticking point with Yngwie, is sure he can solo like a mother fucker, but the riffs he comes up with sound like re-hashed Man O War on a good day. "Largo" shows him dazzle you while using a cleaner guitar tone, which is more impressive to me. It is almost silly how "No Rest For the Wicked" starts off with soloing right on the one. Yngwie takes to the mic again on "Soldier". You can hear how Deep Purple has influenced his approach to singing. This one gets bluesy, but walks that line Ritchie Blackmore does fusing the blues with neo- classical. I'm unsure about how the song speed up, but this is more comfortable for Yngwie to sing. "Duff1220" is another shred, there are only slight variations with this from what we have already heard , most in the bass and drum tracks which are both really low in the mix. Yngwie obviously mixed this album as the leads are way up front. The slight return to "Abandon" doesn't do anything we haven't heard on this album so I am not sure what the point of it was. While "Nacht Musik" is cool for what it is, the licks are pretty similar to what we have already heard at other speeds.  Overall I'll give this wank bank a 6.5, there are some decent moments that impress, I would think even if shredding is all you need in your life, you at least need it is varied doses that don't seem like the same song on the same album.

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