After 3 masterpieces, the power metal gods made a power metal album with many progressive elements...It can't be compared with their classics, but it is a very good album...There are many good songs here like Battlfield, The age of false innocence and specially AND THEN THERE WAS SILENCE, MAYBE THE GREATEST SONG THEY HAVE EVER COMPOSED!
I'm not usually into this genre but this is awesome. Absolutely dripping with energy fronted by Kursch's equally energetic and powerful vocals made even more immense with the diligent use of vocal layering. Above that the songs are very well written and it's unlikely to get bored while listening to this album.
It's over the top, vast and some say too much but for me it's the ballsiest attempt at a "metal opera" ever! There's so much going on, it takes a quite a listens to take it all in but for me it never fails to please. Some say it's over produced but I'd say it has to be to be so damn good.
They described the track "And Then There Was Silence" as a gift to the fans. I would go further and call this album the real gift to the fans. Finding an album that reaches this level of grandeur, but still full of hooks and great power metal songwriting, is not something you can expect to find often.