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Axel Rudi Pell - The Crest

Axel Rudi Pell
The Crest
by Grigoris Chronis at 05 May 2010, 3:05 PM

Produced by Axel Rudi Pell himself, the new album of the German guitar wizard is – in general – nothing more or less significant from what the average friend or foe would expect. “The Crest” carries the trademark tradition of the ex-STEELER axeman and a possible dispute over the album’s quality is not that necessary, since such a quarrel would have more ground if based on the Axel’s general music profile (his 2-3 first albums excluded – they had a hardrockin’ approach, too). “The Crest” counts as the guitarist’s 14th(!) full release, the lineup remains the same as witnessed in all late releases by Pell and the production generally smells the same. Should we end up reviewing this new CD here, then? Nah, let’s talk a bit about it.

Nearly one hour of studio material is available here, with nine full songs and a gloomy intro. The songwriting is typical for the Pell standards, many parts will bring to mind other excerpts from the German musician’s discography (especially the post-“ Black Moon Pyramid” years) and the basic harmonies and lead themes presented by the 50-years-old soldier move towards directions fans of him have already witnessed and enjoyed countless times. The performance of Johhny Gioeli (HARDLINE) is again impressive, with warm and passionate vocals you cannot resist to, while the solid rock called Mike Teranna is armed and dangerous for one more time.

Slight differentiations in regards to the previous Tales Of The Crown” album would simply sum it up to “The Crest” being somehow more dominant in the rhythm section (the bass parts are more in the foreground this time) plus a general better aura in the songwriting section may be visible if you spend enough time listening to the tracklist again and again. To be honest, in “Tales Of The Crown” I’m afraid Axel lacked some inspiration even for his own easy-to-manage standards; in “The Crest” it seems he’s back in better mood again.

I’d bet more on AC/DC or MOTORHEAD deciding to experiment with their songmaking and/or sound at some time rather than Axel Rudi Pell. Hence, there’s no major issue here – the criteria for the possibility of buying “The Crest” derives from answering to one and only question: are you a fan of Axel’s music or not? And, since I am, the personal verdict is…

3 Star Rating

  1. Prelude Of Doom
  2. Too Late
  3. Devil Zone
  4. Prisoner Of Love
  5. Dreaming Dead
  6. Glory Night
  7. Dark Waves Of The Sea (Oceans Of Time Pt. II: The Dark Side)
  8. Burning Rain
  9. Noblesse Oblige (Opus #5 Adagio Contabile)
  10. The End Of Our Time
Axel Rudi Pell - Guitars
Johnny Gioeli - Vocals
Volker Krawczak - Bass
Ferdy Doernberg - Keyboards
Mike Terrana - Drums
Record Label: SPV


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Edited 06 February 2023

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