7. Cellador – Off The Grid
Welcome back to a band who were, ironically, off the grid for far too long!
Sounding sweeter than a nuns freshly-laundered under-garments, Cellador channeled the spirit of prime Helloween on the outstanding Off The Grid.
Cellador have always taught the Europeans a thing or two when it comes to power metal and Off The Grid was no exception. Clinically efficient, stripped raw and focused on riffing harder and faster than ever before, this prime slab of power metal was an undisputed highlight of 2017.
Off the grid…..but firmly back on the power metal map!
6. Threshold – Legends Of the Shires
We can argue the toss over whether Threshold are a prog metal band or a melodic metal band or whatever the hell you want to label them. Truth be told, Legends of the Shires was a knockout album from a beloved UK band who incorporated melody and power and, therefore, they fit in this list perfectly well!
The first Threshold album to feature vocalist Glynn Morgan since the band’s second album Psychedelicatessen, his return appears to have buoyed Threshold, resulting in one of their strongest releases in years (and that’s saying something!).
Huge choruses, exemplary performances, sublime metal songwriting, it’s all here and it’s all delivered with such class and supreme talent that you can’t understand why Threshold aren’t a household name.
5. Europe – Walk The Earth
Europe? That’s right, fuckin’ Europe you sceptics…..a band that’s been a world-class melodic metal/hard rock band for years now, returning in 2003 and building to the astonishing return to form that was 2009’s Last Look At Eden. The quality has just kept on comin’ ever since (2012’s Bag Of Bones was particularly impressive) and Walk The Earth simply solidified Europe’s second golden age!
Overflowing with absolute epics – the kind of spine-tingling clusterbombs akin to classic cuts such as Purple’s “Perfect Strangers” and Zeppelin’s “Kashmir” – the likes of “The Siege” and the title track came replete with stomping riffs, orchestral flourishes, an Eastern feel and some suitably Jon Lord-esque keys to fully augment their sound.
If you hadn’t already realised that Europe’s glam past is well and truly behind them then Walk The Earth will be the album to truly convince you.