Alex Beyrodt is definitely in the running for busiest metal guitarist. As if releasing the latest Voodoo Circle album “More Than One Way Home” in early 2013 wasn’t enough, Beyrodt is set to release a pair of albums from his two other bands, Primal Fear (Delivering the Black) and also the return of Silent Force after a seven-year hiatus. For those who may not be familiar with Silent Force, the band was formed in 1999 by Beyrodt (ex-Sinner, Primal Fear, Voodoo Circle, The Sygnet) and American singer D.C. Cooper (from Royal Hunt fame). In 2000 the debut album The Empire of Future was released, along with Beyrodt and Cooper there were also Torsten Röhre on keyboards, André Hilgers (who will end playing on Rage) and Thorsten Fleisch on bass. In 2001 the second studio album, Infatuator was released by Massacre Records with the addition of Jürgen Steinmetz replacing Fleisch on bass. In 2004 the band moved to Noise Records and with them they released their third studio album Worlds Apart. The fourth album Walk the Earth was released in February 2007 on AFM Records. Now Silent Force have returned with a new line-up, having vocalist Michael Bormann replacing Cooper, bassist Mat Sinner and keyboard player Alessandro Del Vecchio joining the band with Beyrodt and Hilgers remaining their positions. The album title, appropriately enough, is Rising From Ashes.
With Silent Force, Beyrodt is able to spread his wings beyond the steamroller aggressive power metal approach of Primal Fear and the throwback 80’s bluesy hard rock of Voodoo Circle to create a neo-classical heavy power metal with more than just a touch of AOR-ish sensibilities. The album kicks off with a bang on Caught In Their Wicked Game which has the perfect blend of Yngwie Malmsteen inspired neo-classical guitar and keyboard wizardy and Bormann’s aggressive yet melodic vocals. Things keep rolling along with the ultra-melodic guitar crunch of There Ain’t No Justice. The verses have a wicked AOR (album oriented rock) feel with a huge multi vocal harmony during the chorus and Beyrodt delivers a blistering guitar solo. The albums first single/video Circle of Trust is a feast for your auditory senses. This song has it all, melody, heavy guitar crunch, a driving rhythm, and a huge soaring chorus that will have you singing it for days. The opening guitar harmonies on Living To Die are reminiscent of Operation: Mindcrime Queensryche. The verses and choruses have multi-layered vocal harmonies and a huge hook. Before You Run is a fast paced rocker with a driving beat and some excellent keyboard work by Del Vecchio. The 80’s metal vibe gets turned up to 11 on You Gotta Kick It, a high-octane song that has many fist pumping moments and another huge melodic chorus with lots of vocal power from Bormann. The 70’s style organ/keyboards take center stage on Turn Me Loose (not the Loverboy classic). Bormann’s vocals take command once again. As much as I enjoy D.C. Cooper’s vocal work, Bormann’s work throughout the album is stellar and he fits the style perfectly. Born To Be A Fighter is a balls out heavy rocker with more multi-layered vocal harmonies and a catchy as hell chorus. The fist-pumping intro to Anytime, Anywhere will have you throwing your horns in the air. By now you get the idea, huge sounding chorus, huge vocals, big drum sound, throwback 80’s arena metal (and that is a big time compliment coming from this 80’s child!). The albums final moment is the ominous and heavy AOR of Kiss of Death. Heavy guitar rhythms and a nice guitar/keyboard battle are song highlights, along with a melodic and sing-a-long chorus to close out the album. Although 2014 has just begun I believe I have my first contender for album of the year. Mark my words, if you enjoy 80’s inspired heavy power metal with killer musicianship and powerful melodic vocals, I encourage you to give Silent Force a listen. For those D.C Cooper era Silent Force fans, give Rise From The Ashes a chance, you won’t be disappointed! Highly Recommended!