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Classic Review: Scanner - Hypertrace

Label: Noise Records
Year released: 1988
Duration: 40:32
Tracks: 10
Genre: Speed Metal

Rating: 4.5/5

Review online: December 24, 2004
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers Rating

Rated 4.08/5 (81.67%) (60 Votes)

This album just rules. Scanner were one of the first bands to get called "Speed Metal" back in the day, and I suppose for 1988 they were pretty fast. For those of you who like Gamma Ray, this is where they got the whole Sci-Fi thing. Scanner took the basic fast and catchy Helloween approach and added wailing vocals and science-fiction pulp lyrics to make their own distinct sound.

For a pretty perfect mix of 80's metal with more modern Power Metal, look no further than "Hypertrace". It has that 80s guitar sound and that 80s production sound, with great classic metal riffs and very catchy songs. It's pretty obvious everyone from Gamma Ray to Cryonic Temple to Iron Savior owes something to this band, and this album in particular. Pretty much every song here just rules, from the opening lick of the insanely hooky "Warp 7", through the killer "Across The Universe", to the ultimate Sci-fi metal epic "Locked Out". Mike Knoblich has one of the most awesome voices for this kind of stuff. He punches out these sneering, high-pitched howls like Kai Hansen on crack. Sometimes he's not quite on key all the way, as on "Terrion", but mostly his air-raid style is perfect for the material, adding just the right vintage touch.

This is just a killer disc from start to finish, with no dead spots, no skippers, and nary a dull moment. Stellar guitarwork, great songs, unique vocals, and that unbeatable, impossible to fake 80s feel that never gets old. Classic in the truest sense.

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