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Review: DragonForce - Reaching into Infinity
Reaching into Infinity

Label: Ear Music
Year released: 2017
Duration: 60:46
Tracks: 11
Genre: Power Metal

Rating: 1/5

Review online: June 13, 2017
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers Rating
Reaching into Infinity

Rated 3.17/5 (63.33%) (12 Votes)

DragonForce hit a kind of high in popularity with the ubiquity of "Through Fire and Flames" on Guitar Hero about a decade ago, but since then they have been struggling to define themselves, and in fact, were already having a hard time with that even then. Their first two albums were choice pieces of melodic, high-speed Power Metal, and in fact their speed and excessive instrumentation started to become their gimmick. The problem was, it was a very specific gimmick, without much in the way of places to go, and even by the time of Inhuman Rampage it was showing signs of strain.

Then in 2010 the band lost signature vocalist ZP Theart, and hired Marc Hudson to replace him. Their first disc with their new singer and new approach was The Power Within – which was a good enough album, but without their trademark insane speed, it was just another Power Metal album. Now, after the almost unnoticed Maximum Overload, we have their third "new" DragonForce album, and the questions are: is it any good, and have they managed to reinvent themselves? Well, no, and no.

Without the over-the-top musicianship of their old days, they are just another Power Metal band who have to write good songs, and they can't really seem to do that. None of the songs on this album are bad, exactly, they are just an increasingly desperate attempt to lock onto some kind of identity. They try to write catchy tunes like they used to, but the songs are too busy for that. They try to throttle up the speed and catch a little of their old high-octane style, but without good tunes, it just makes the songs tiresome. All these songs are just too long, and they are simultaneously doing too much, and not enough. They are trying too hard, and yet doing nothing that is actually interesting.

Overall, this sounds like some other band trying to imitate the old DragonForce style and not quite managing it. The production is expensive and pro, and the performances are fine, but there is no spark or soul in this music. It's just faceless speedy product that never manages to conjure any emotion besides boredom.

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