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Gothic Fate - Illuminati

Gothic Fate
by Matt Sworder at 07 June 2015, 1:02 PM

Power metal band GOTHIC FATE come out of Hamburg, the home of numerous successful power and heavy metal bands past, present, and, with any luck, future. While the band may want their album, "Illuminati", to be considered on its own merits, GOTHIC FATE will undoubtedly attract some extra attention due to the presence of a former member of GAMMA RAY within their ranks, with Uwe Wessel handling bass guitar.

With this kind of pedigree, expectations for the album are naturally raised, so it's a shame to say that opener "The Enemy" is solid but far from spectacular. The vocal performance is suitably sweeping, clean and precise (arguably a necessity for power metal), and the guitar, bass and drum work is all tight, with some good riffs and rhythms scattered about. What's lacking is anything that makes the track truly exciting or memorable, and so it's not as impactful as you'd ideally want a first song to be."Lies" ups the tempo a bit, and is all the better for it. The significant influence of classic late '80s/early '90s power/speed metal, originated by GOTHIC FATE's contemporaries, becomes clear to hear, and there's also similarities to more modern power metal bands such as DREAM EVIL, particularly in the vocals of Darius Schüler.

The three-part title track brings the epic, with haunting, monk-like chanting really creating an atmosphere, and is probably the high point of the album! "Deny The Gods" is another good song, with plenty of intensity and a vocal line that sticks in your head, and it shows that GOTHIC FATE are definitely at their best when they push things to a higher tempo. However, the quality of the songs isn't good enough for the 57 minute run time of the album not to feel overly long.

Overall, while "Illuminati" is enjoyable, and there's nothing really wrong with any part of the album, it just never quite feels special or exciting. Whereas most modern power metal releases are somewhat tongue in cheek, or ridiculously over the top, GOTHIC FATE seem rather serious, and so the band simply aren't as fun as many others out there! Undoubtedly there'll be something in "Illuminati" for the power metal die-hards, but for others, it lacks anything you can really sink your teeth into.

2 Star Rating

1. The Enemy
2. Lies
3. Bleed
4. Illuminati - I - Illuminati
5. Illuminati - II - Against The Tide
6. Illuminati - III - The Dark Side
7. Deny The Gods
8. Desperate Measures
9. Nightmare
10. The Healer
11. Angel Of Sin
12. Mental Damage
13. Pride
Darius Schüler - Vocals
Stefan Harder - Guitars
Markus Brune - Guitars
Uwe Wessel - Bass
Ardi Hasenfuss - Drums
Record Label: Skol Records


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