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Axel Rudi Pell - Knight’s Call Award winner

Axel Rudi Pell
Knight’s Call
by Kyle Scott at 04 April 2018, 6:11 PM

Guitarist Axel Rudi Pell said goodbye to his original band STEELER back in 1989 to begin a solo career. 28 years later, AXEL RUDI PELL is still going strong. A band that should be the gold standard of 80’s Metal and has kept the genre alive throughout their discography all through those 2+ decades. “Knight’s Call” is their eighteenth (!) full-length album, and it’s the latest testament to an indominable spirit of Power Metal.

While “The Medieval Overture” is not my thing (I have very strong opinions about artificial strings in music), “The Wild and the Young” comes charging forth, ARP doing what he does best, shredding a guitar within an inch of its life. Gotta love the basswork of Volker Krawczak, too. His bass remains a very strong presence throughout the album. Johnny Gioeli is AXEL RUDI PELL’s fourth vocalist, with the band since 1998. Gioeli approaches vocals similar to their ’91 lead Rob Rock; impressive high notes, and well-rounded passion in their delivery. Like all 80’s Power bands worth their salt, they sing about the three things they are fiercely loyal to; never growing old (“The Wild and the Young”), undying love for the music and their fans (“Long Live Rock”), mythology references (“Towers of Babylon”), and an added raising a middle finger to oppression (“Slaves on the Run”). ARP wields supreme power over his chords and never falters in his ultimate deliverance.

AXEL RUDI PELL hasn’t changed over the years. Other bands as old as they are have tried to keep with the times by assimilating trends of the present, changing their looks, or changing their playing style completely. AXEL RUDI PELL does not and has not needed to do any of that, and probably never will any time soon. They remain as they always were since they began; unstoppable.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. The Medieval Overture
2. The Wild and the Young
3. Wildest Dreams
4. Long Live Rock
5. The Crusaders of Doom
6. Truth and Lies
7. Beyond the Light
8. Slaves on the Run
9. Follow the Sun
10. Towers of Babylon
 
Lineup:
Volker Krawczak - Bass
Axel Rudi Pell - Guitars
Ferdy Doernberg - Keyboards
Johnny Gioeli - Vocals
Bobbi Rondinelli - Drums
 
Record Label: SPV / Steamhammer Records
     


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Edited 31 May 2020
 

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