|Review: At Vance - Ride the Sky|
|Ride the Sky|
Label: AFM Records
Year released: 2009
Genre: Power Metal
Review online: October 28, 2009
Reviewed by: MetalMike
for:Ride the Sky
I am not all that familiar with Germany's At Vance, except for the occasional song here and there. It was with a fair amount of anticipation that I began listening to the band's eighth release, Ride the Sky. Having heard OF the band numerous times and being a fan of Power Metal in general I thought "how can this be bad?" Oh, and naming your album after a classic Helloween song doesn't hurt, either.
What we have in Ride the Sky is an album that lies somewhere between the multi-cultural Power Metal band Silent Force and the AOR Rock of early 80s Rainbow. Listening to mid-paced rockers like "Torn – Burning Like Fire" and "Wishing Well" (a cover of a Free song) I was struck by how easily they could have come from any of the mid-period Rainbow releases like Difficult to Cure or Down to Earth. In fact, vocalist Rick Altzi does a pretty fair impression of Down to Earth's Graham Bonnet. Faster songs like the title track or "Power" would fit right in on Silent Force's Infatuator or Walk the Earth. Does this mean Ride the Sky sounds unoriginal? Yes, it does. Not that Ride the Sky is a bad album. Overall, the performances are good from slick riffs to catchy choruses to burning leads on most of the songs. Missteps include "Vivaldi – Summer 2nd Set," which cannot compare to the original piece by the Italian baroque composer, and the rather limp ballad, "You and I." The production is rather sterile robbing Ride the Sky of any real punch, similar again to the post-Dio Rainbow sound.
Ride the Sky adds nothing to the Power Metal field, but it is well played and many of the songs are fairly entertaining, if stale. You probably won't be disappointed but don't expect to be blown away, either.
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