[i]“I just want to go to the shit, and see some action!”[/i] – Private Joker from Full Metal Jacket. This quote should tell you a whole lot if you've seen Full Metal Jacket. Basically... lower your expectations, it's not all that great.
In 2003 we see the sophomore release of Firewind, Burning Earth. We also see Gus G. help write and perform on other albums for groups such as Nightrage who saw their debut, along with Dream Evil and Mystic Prophecy who also showcased their sophomore albums. This is most likely the sole reason why Burning Earth sounds washed up compared to its predecessor, Between Heaven and Hell. Yet, there are still Firewind classics. It’s just another album that has half on the album worth listening, while the others are not even worth anyone’s time.
What I mean by washed up is the inspiration during the writing sessions. Gus’s riffs featured on Burning Earth seem to be leftovers from Dream Evil or Mystic Prophecy. Stephen Fredrick’s vocals limit songs that could’ve possibly stepped into the light as a notable Firewind song, but fall short along with repetition of Gus and crew. If there was a possible chance of Firewind’s current lineup to re-record the Burning Earth album, the chances of Burning Earth of having more noticeable songs are pretty high considering Apollo’s vocals are some of the best in business of power metal, and Stephen couldn't pull off what he wanted. But instead we see a remastered 2012 release. Besides the remastered release, another downfall of Burning Earth will most likely be noticed right off the bat with people who actually pay attention to the lyrics. Granted there are shining moments of some great lyric writing, but when you start hearing “Bang your, bang your drum, bang it hard, hard!”
as the main chorus and then it’s repeated… it really shows what I mean by washed up, not even the vocal melody can make up this atrocity.
Despite these flaws, and like I said earlier. There are still Firewind classics presented on Burning Earth. Gus was still able to pull out some awesome solos and riffs in spite of being on three previous albums as a fulltime member and song writer. Stephen Fredrick was also able to pull off catchy choruses and verses regardless of his failed attempts. As a conclusion, Burning Earth is okay, but it could've been better if they slowed down and perhaps took their time writng this album.
To anyone who is actually considering listening to this album. I’ll be nice and tell you all you need is I Am the Anger
, Brother’s Keeper
, Fire and the Fury
, Burning Earth
, with a possible exception of Steal Them Blind
. The rest aren’t even worth mentioning.