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Review: Gothic Knights - Reflections From The Other Side
Gothic Knights
Reflections From The Other Side

Label: Independent
Year released: 2012
Duration: 66:32
Tracks: 11
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 3.5/5

Review online: October 21, 2012
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers Rating
Reflections From The Other Side

Rated 4.2/5 (84%) (5 Votes)

I was as surprised as anyone to find out that Gothic Knights are still around, as their last album, the uninspired and derivative Up From the Ashes, was released almost nine years ago, and I had heard nothing from them since. As far as I was concerned, they were done. Kingdom of the Knights was their all-time classic, and they are just never going to equal that, but I give them points for trying.

I have to say, the riffs on here are pretty fucking killer, without the GammaWeen imitation that marred their last one. John Tzantis still has a feel for classic metal riffs and this time they let the album sound dark and aggressive, with a big, fat guitar sound. The songwriting is not up to their old stuff, but at least this time they are doing what they do rather than trying to ride a trend. There's a lot more Mercyful Fate than Hammerfall in this, and the dark, heavy riffage is really enjoyable.

This band's weak point has always been vocals, but it's an odd kind of weakness. Bryan Avatar is long-gone, and we have Rick Sanchez in his place. Now, when Sanchez straight-up sings, he sounds pretty good - so much better than he used to that it is really amazing how much he's improved. His problem isn't ability, it's approach. When he just wails on it, he sounds good, but too often he's growling, or moaning, or otherwise overselling the vocal lines. He doesn't seem to have any feel for catchy melodies, and his vocal lines always seem disjointed, badly timed, or otherwise awkward.

So again, Gothic Knights have all the parts, and this time, the songwriting is more coherent, but they still don't manage to make their music compelling, just interesting.

Other related information on the site
Review: Kingdom Of The Knights (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Up From The Ashes (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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