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On disc: Onward

- Evermoving - Volker Raabe - 7 stars
- Reawaken - Claudia Ehrhardt - 8 stars


(Century Media - 2002)

This is the second album of the American power metal quartet and it's called Reawaken. They kinda reawaken the 80's metal of bands like Loudness and combine it with nowadays influences. Not a typical power metal album from an American band. Partly they remind me of some Scandinavia-based melodic power metal bands, but even that doesnt describe them at all... Guitarist Toby Knapp started playing guitar at age 10 and soon recorded demos which in 1992 got him a deal with Mike Varney's Shrapnel Records and released Guitar Distortion, an album in the vein of Malmsteen and Friedman. He continued listening to black metal and later played in the black metal band Darken. Later he started a project with drum­mer Jon Pereau. Defiled Records offered them a deal for some power metal stuff and Onward was born. The line-up got completed by bassist Chris Payette and singer Michael Gant. Onward's music is addressed to the fans of power metal as well as fans of neo-classical metal la Malmsteen. On the track Eye Of The Nightmare the Apocrypha vocalist Steve Plocica sang and gives this song a different vibe through his deeper, rougher voice. To get an idea of Onward listen to: Where Evil Follows and My Darkest Room.

8 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt



(Century Media - 2001)

This quartet comes from Montana in the USA and their name is Onward. The label inform­ation praise them as the new star at the bombast power metal heaven. That's a little too much.
Anyway, when I listened to the album opener The Kindness Of Stranger I had to think about Pretty Maids, but this doesn't last for long. Evermoving is a guitar-driven power metal album. Responsible for the guitar-oriented metal is guitar virtuoso Toby Knapp who was signed to Mike Varney's Shrapnel Records and made himself known in the 90's with some releases. Songs like the title track, The Last Sunset and Storm Coming Soon are typical European bombast power metal combined with powerful mid-80's US metal. Some might have a problem with the vocals of Michael Grant... But at least after the 3rd spin this album shows all its beauty. Especially the midi-ballad Lost Side Of The World is a highlight on this 8 track album. It's fun to listen to the CD which has it's own dynamic, but also some weak parts....

7 stars

Volker Raabe
(translation: Claudia Ehrhardt)


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