Jori : It has barely been a year since The Unity, a new band featuring two Gamma Ray members and the keyboardist of Mob Rules, came with its excellent [http://www.lordsofmetal.nl/en/reviews/view/id/34518]self-titled debut album[/url] and surprised the power metal scene. In the meantime Gamma Ray might still on hold due to Kai’s renewed Helloween adventures, Mob Rules has not been idle so it is in the very least impressive that The Unity has already got a new album ready. Will this high working speed not come at the cost of the quality?
Let’s listen to find out! Opener ‘Last Betrayal’ spoils us that this might turn out to be another fantastic album. The full force opening riff is the level that we expect from top notch German metal, and also vocalist Gianba convinces with his powerful voice. The following songs are a bit more hard rock oriented. And though they are definitely not bad, a significant portion of disappointment has to be suppressed on my side. With names of musician that come with this band you do hope for something slightly different than this. The best song among this more calm batch of music is the seven-minute ‘Road To Nowhere’, with a very strong chorus and impressive solo. Only at ‘No Hero’ we can once again find some firmer material. It seems that keyboard player Sascha had some influence on the song writing here, for this song is much reminiscent of the older Mob Rules works. ‘the Willow Tree’ is the ballad of the album and damn, that is one fine piece of work! By this time I surrendered to the fact that putting down ballads is part of the job of power meta reviewer, and now the ballad on this album turns out to be the album highlight! After this one we still get the mindful ‘Above Everything’, the Gamma Ray breathing ‘Children Of The Light’ (is this ‘Master Of Confusion’ versus ‘Electric Eye’ by Judas Priest?) and as closer, the symphonic delicacy ‘L.I.F.E.’.
The album does definitely not start out as strong as the debut album, but manages to get itself back on its feet by means of some very decent songs. The amount of more mediocre works results in this score that is definitely a bit lower than that of the debut album. I hope for a bit more metal again on an album three if it will come! By the way, the band can be seen live shortly supporting Axel Rudi Pell, a tour that unfortunately does not pass our homeland.