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Review: Manticora - To Live to Kill to Live
To Live to Kill to Live

Label: ViciSolum Productions
Year released: 2020
Duration: 1:03:23
Tracks: 12
Genre: Progressive Power Metal

Rating: 4/5

Review online: August 20, 2020
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
To Live to Kill to Live

Rated 4/5 (80%) (4 Votes)

Manticora has been around for close to 25 years and 2020's To Live to Kill to Live is their ninth full-length over that span. I'd never heard these guys before but now that I have, I can say they remind me a lot of mid-period Blind Guardian. Singer Lars Larsen has a voice and delivery similar to Hansi Kursch, the band's music is power metal that runs the gamut from double-kick anthems to progressive-tinged and moderately lengthy, and they aren't afraid to color outside the lines a bit with things like spoken word pieces or vaguely Middle Eastern melodies. They like to write about heavy, involved topics (this album being a companion to their previous effort, To Kill to Live to Kill) with songs titles like "The Farmer's Tale, Pt. 3 – Eaten by the Beasts" and "Katana—Death of the Meaning of Life." Musically, I enjoy what Manticora play but I couldn't pick up on the story very well, maybe because it is too dense (or I'm too dense, which is a distinct possibility) and there aren't many standout hooks or choruses to latch on to, so the album went by each time in a bit of a blur. If you are a power or power/prog fan, I think you owe it to yourself to give To Live to Kill to Live a couple of spins, though, because it is well played and maybe the lyrics will resonate with you more. I can see this album being a fan favorite for some, even though it didn't click for me.

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