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Review: Helloween - Helloween

Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Year released: 2021
Duration: 1:07:42
Tracks: 12
Genre: Power Metal


Review online: June 12, 2021
Reviewed by: MetalMike
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Rated 4.57/5 (91.3%) (46 Votes)

Helloween is the fifteenth full-length album from power metal pioneers Helloween and features their "Pumpkins United" lineup which sees founder/singer/guitarist Kai Hansen and Keepers-era singer Michael Kiske back in the fold. Many times, less is more, like when you're trying to explain where you were until 3 am last night, but in the case of Helloween, more is definitely more. The musicians involved bring a lot of experience to the table and while that has the potential to result in clashing egos, nothing could be further from the truth. What Helloween have presented us with is all the best elements of the band's music from nearly 40s years of making it, plus lessons from other endeavors like Gamma Ray, Unisonic and Pink Cream 69. You have epic, Keepers-era tracks like "Out for the Glory" and "Skyfall" where the drums race along at top speed for impossibly long periods of time, Kiske's smooth delivery dovetailing with the gruffer Deris singing and Hansen's wild screaming. You have Deris-era anthems like "Indestructible," but with the addition of Kiske's powerful, clear voice offsetting the more typical Deris vocal lines. "Robot King" is a classic Weikath number, fast and with a degree of tongue-in-cheek humor that owes a lot to Walls of Jericho cuts like "Gorgar" and "Reptile." Every band member gets a chance to shine on Helloween and I cannot think of a single song I don't want to listen to over and over again. The songwriting is stunningly excellent and tremendously consistent. It's like the addition of the new/old members inspired everyone to raise their game to the next level and maybe the one after that. Helloween might not be breaking new ground, but the album's strength isn't innovation. It's that we get to hear all the different things that have made this band great over the years all in one place, offering us a listening experience that is varied yet unmistakably Helloween all at once. If you are an Helloween fan or a power metal fan in general, this album is a must.

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