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Review: Scanner - The Judgement
The Judgement

Label: Massacre Records
Year released: 2015
Duration: 54:55
Tracks: 11
Genre: Power Metal

Rating: 4/5

Review online: March 16, 2015
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
The Judgement

Rated 4/5 (80%) (9 Votes)

In 1988 Thrash ruled the airwaves. For Power Metal fans like me there wasn't much other than Helloween, a band that would soon go off the rails in spectacular fashion. Then along comes Germany's Scanner out of the blue with their copious double-kick drums and sci-fi lyrics. I ate up their debut, Hypertrace and played the crap out of songs like "Warp 7" and "Locked Out" on my college radio show. Funny thing, as much as I loved that album I never picked up another by the band. That is until 2015's The Judgement dropped into my review queue. 27 years in between albums is a long time.

Power Metal is still the name of the game after all those years and the lyrics still toy with science fiction. There is still plenty of speed ("F.T.B.") and slower anthems ("Eutopia") and the songwriting across most of the album is excellent. Almost every track is catchy and fun though Scanner runs out of steam towards the end and The Judgement would probably have been a stronger album if the last couple of songs had been left off. Long gone is singer Michael Knoblich, whose high-pitched warble gave the band a touch of the unique, replaced by Efthimios Ioannidis who also has a wide range but is nowhere near as distinctive.

The strengths of The Judgement far outweigh the weaknesses so anyone into Primal Fear, Painkiller-era Priest or later Helloween (The Dark Ride on) should be all over it. Scanner hasn't really missed much of a beat in well over two decades and that's pretty impressive.

Other related information on the site
Review: Hypertrace (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Hypertrace (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Hypertrace (Re-release) (reviewed by MetalMike)
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