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Airborn - Lizard Secrets - Part One: Land of the Living

Lizard Secrets - Part One: Land of the Living
by Emmalyn Campbell at 31 May 2018, 6:17 AM

AIRBORN is a Power Metal band from Turin, Italy. Since 1995, the group has released four albums before their most recent in 2001, 2003, 2009, and 2014, respectively. “Lizard Secrets – Part One: Land of the Living” was released in May of this year and contains 13 tracks. The first track, “Immortal Underdogs,” is an instrumental intro that lasts about a minute and a half. Thick, warm riffs build in speed, as do the drums, and it certainly feels like an intro to a Power Metal album, promising but a bit underwhelming. The opening guitars in the next track “Who We Are” are simple but nice and MAIDEN-esque, and the fast tempo of the song gives it a pleasing movement throughout which makes it very hard to be bored, while vocalist Alessio Perari shows off an impressive range.

“Lizard Secret” is slower with a punching bass line, but even its top-notch solo doesn’t save the song from dragging a little. “We Realize” seems to be going in a similar direction but then picks up towards the end with a feverish piano and guitar interlude. It’s definitely a song that can subtly grow on you, which can give it just as much lasting power as being immediately blown away. If I can describe how “Brace for Impact” relates to the other tracks so far, I would have to say “futuristic.” The drums are fast, the verses full of energy, and lyrically, it’s like a rallying call. “Wolf Child” rides off this momentum with one of the most powerful riffs on the album, drums and bass that create a frontal assault, and a slicing guitar solo. “Here Comes the Claw,” is strong, slow, and heavy, with some nice JUDAS PRIEST vibes lyrically and musically. It’s not an imitation, but you can tell this group is quite thankful for their influences.

“Land of the Living” has a comparatively more cheerful tone than the other tracks so far, which makes sense given the title, with a fresh yet classic Power Metal sound, but I wish it did build to a lasting hook. As it is, it’s not offensive to the ears but disappointing as the title track. “Meaning of Life” is another fast, intense song. The drums are pounding hard enough to vibrate your brain in your skull, and the solo is long, screeching, and superior. The lyrical content surrounding the “meaning of life” only helps the track in becoming one of the most compelling on the album. In tone and lyrical content, “Metal Haters” seems like something plucked out of the late 80's. The guitar work before the final verse and chorus is again splendid and helps the song become a slow burn. “Defenders of Planet Earth” is the one of the best on the album in my view, commanding guitars, frenzied drumming, capable verses, and a sing-along chorus.

“My Country Is the World” has a slow, melancholy, and beautiful orchestral beginning. It makes you feel like you just stepped inside a fantasy novel before the intro suddenly cuts away to the heavy riffs and drums we’ve been used to. There’s really no other way to say it; this is an epic track and rivals the one just before it as the best of the bunch. “Cosmic Rebels” is a re-recorded bonus track, and it’s a great way to end the album, plenty heavy with plenty of melody. Admittedly, this genre and bands who follow a traditional Heavy Metal sound are not exactly known for branching out. With “Lizard Secrets” in particular, you could tell me this is an album from the 90's, the 2000's, or the 2010's, and I’d probably believe each one. However, just because it’s a sound that we’ve heard before does not mean that it’s not a good sound, and bands don’t always have to be trying something groundbreaking to be appreciated. There are a few songs that I’m not crazy about, but this is a strong album that will surely please any true Power Metal fan.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Immortal Underdogs (Intro)
2. Who We Are
3. Lizard Secret
4. We Realize
5. Brace for Impact
6. Wolf Child
7. Here Comes the Claw
8. Land of the Living
9. Meaning of Life
10. Metal Haters
11. Defenders of Planet Earth
12. My Country Is the World
13. Cosmic Rebels (re-recorded)
Alessio Perari – Vocals, Guitars
Roberto Capucchio – Guitars
Domenico Buratti – Bass
Roberto Gaia – Drums
Record Label: Fighter Records


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