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Terra Atlantica - Age of Steam Award winner

Terra Atlantica
Age of Steam
by Mark Machlay at 18 August 2020, 6:56 AM

TERRA ATLANTICA endeavor to sound like many of the classic power metal bands like their heroes, EDGUY, AVANTASIA and RHAPSODY. The band was formed in late 2014 by duo Tristan Harders on vocals and Nico Hauschildt on drums, having known each other from working on a previous project. While Hauschildt’s previous group REVENDARIA managed to eke out a lonely single in the power metal genre, Harders was mostly known from melodic death metal/folk metal group FORSAKEN HILL. They filled out their initial roster with bassist Nick and guitarist Mike Terman. Together they released their debut album in 2017 – “A City Once Divine” about the amazing fictional land of Atlantis. Changes in the lineup caused the writing and recording of their follow-up record in 2018 to fall to the duo of Harders and Hauschildt. Soon, they added bassist Julian Prufer and guitarists Frederik Akkermann for a once again complete lineup.

With their follow-up sophomore effort “Age of Steam” being released on August 14th 2020, the band continues the lyrical Atlantis concept saga they set up in their debut. Taking place in an alternate 19th century, Atlantis arises again and through the use of its futuristic technology, is the impetus for the Industrial Revolution. Obviously affronted by this new menacing power, the British Empire responds as if an act of treason were committed and tries to destroy their new enemies. The cinematic approach gives the listener a sense of adventure full of crazy guitar riffs and solos, earworm choruses and amazing acrobatic vocals.

In the same way that I used to listen to BLIND GUARDIAN before visiting our local Renaissance Festival, if there were some kind of Pirates of the Caribbean/Steampunk festival, I would slap these guys on the car stereo to pump myself up for a good time. From the outset of overture “Rebirth 1815”, you are thrusted into this raucous power metal maritime adventure that never lets up. Even finishing with a false ending, next track “Across the Sea of Time” prepares you for all the cliché power metal tropes with its over-the-top guitar theatrics, soaring vocals and expected double bass runs. Yes, it’s cheesy and DRAGONFORCE like but if the cover and dress of the band in somewhat period specific outfits of 1815 pirates in their portrait didn’t give it away, these guys don’t just talk the power metal tightrope, they live it. Their sheer passion for the genre shines through on the record and while I might have groaned at the clichés, I waxed nostalgic of the time when I first discovered power metal as a teen…a longer time than I care to reminisce about. Needless to say, if you can handle the extreme cheese, this is one amazing record and I hope they can use this Covid-19 downtime from touring to possible crank out another in time for 2021? One can only hope.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Rebirth
2. Across the Sea of Time
3. Mermaids’ Isle
4. Age of Steam
5. The Treachery of Mortheon
6. Forces of the Ocean
7. Quest into the Sky
8. Believe in the Dawn
9. Gates of the Netherrealm
10. Rage of the Atlantic War
11. Until the Morning Sun Appears
Tristan Harders – Vocals
Nico Hauschildt – Drums
Julian Prufer – Bass
Frederik Akkermann – Guitars
Record Label: Pride & Joy Music


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Edited 03 June 2023

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