Review Summary: Mystic Prophecy does the exact opposite of regression by advancing their songwriting, talents, and sound to new heights.
Thrash Metal and Power Metal are two genres that fit perfectly together. Thrash Metal encompasses the balls-to-the-wall traits of Heavy Metal perfectly; with chugging riffs, crushing drums, and an almost constant need to headbang. Power Metal, by contrast, focuses prominently on more upbeat melodies, the occasional presence of keyboards, and an extremely talented, and higher pitched, singer. Combined, these genres are everything good about Heavy Metal at once; as bands like Iced Earth and Mystic Prophecy have proven over the years. Mystic Prophecy, on their sophomore album Regressus
, take this idea and run with it even further into the Thrash Metal direction. Combined with the growing skill of singer Roberto Liapakis, this album will serve as a great mixture of Power and Thrash Metals to listeners.
"Calling From Hell,” the first song on the album, shows listeners exactly what Mystic Prophecy is all about. Featuring remarkable singing from Liapakis while Gus G. (the guitarist that was in about seven bands) creates constant incredible riffing that would remind anyone of Firewind. The introduction of the song reeks of albums like The Premonition
, and his skill of riff crafting pulverizes many modern foes of Power Metal just after listening to this song. Meanwhile, Dennis Ekdahl and Martin Albrecht both succeed in the rhythm department; perfectly acting in unison on the drums and bass respectively. Their presence may be limited in comparison to their peers, but their sheer consistency on each individual instrument creates the effective mood of two different Metal genres at once. Though this song is only four-and-a-half minutes long, it is the perfect demonstration of what is to come: Fast and heavy instrumentals paired with well-performed and melodic singing.
The rest of the album is nothing to scoff at, either. While song lengths rarely exceed the five-minute mark, the band uses the short run-time effectively and packs each moment in the twelve songs with enough melodies and headbanging material to leave few unsatisfied. “Eternal Flame” and “Lords of Pain” are likely contenders for the heavier songs on the album, containing heaviness that would make some Thrash Metal bands feel like worms in the dirt. The bone-crushing instrumentals are exactly what Heavy Metal is all about, and Mystic Prophecy certainly succeeds throughout the short, but undoubtedly memorable, durations of these tracks. On the other hand, “Sign of the Cross” and “Mystic Prophecy” contain more melodies juxtaposed to the aforementioned songs; focusing more on Mr. Liapakis’s great and melodic singing to take over. These vocal melodies are some of the strongest in Power Metal, and it shows after each verse and chorus with Roberto Liapakis at the forefront. Though these songs try out more of one direction compared to the other, these songs do not entirely forget that the band is about both
styles of Metal; and always makes a fulfilling listen on every song.
Though bands like Iced Earth or Firewind may be the most popular bands that use a thrashier style of Power Metal, each song on Regressus
is worth a listen for its own unique tools and tricks; and makes Mystic Prophecy a name that should be known by any fan of Power Metal. Each song is an entertaining experience that, though might not be the most original example of Power Metal, is certainly one that any fan of Power or Thrash Metals should give a try. The exceptional talent of the band, such as the soaring singing of Mr. Liapakis and the ridiculous riffing of Gus G, is combined with their creativity and writing to make one of the most enjoyable Power and Thrash Metal combinations in the business.