|Review: Onward - Reawaken (2014)|
Label: Pure Steel Records
Year released: 2014
Originally released in: 2002
Genre: Heavy/Power Metal
Review online: June 15, 2014
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 4/5 (80%) (11 Votes)
This is a reissue of Onward's second full-length from 2002, released in the wake of their excellent debut Evermoving. The band themselves have not existed since 2003, and despite some thoughts they might re-form, the death of singer Micheal Grant has pretty much nixed that idea permanently. It's a real shame, because this is probably his best vocal work, not to mention a fine showcase for guitarist/main songwriter Toby Knapp, who remains one of metal's unappreciated geniuses.
Reawaken is a feast for fans of classic US Metal, and the fingerprints of bands like Fates Warning and Steel Prophet are all over this. Knapp's playing remains sharp, inventive, and clean, with a great feel for hook and rhythm. In particular, the song "Seven Tides of Labyrinthine" remains a classic of the US sound, and everyone with an interest should hear it.
The rest of this album is not to be missed either, with catchy, complex, involved songs bristling with air-guitar moments and memorable vocal hooks. On top of that, this is probably the best production job they ever got. Here is an unsung band at their peak, and it is a terrible shame that not many people heard it when it came out twelve years ago, and it's past time it got the proper recognition.
|Other related information on the site|
|Review: Evermoving (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)|
Review: Evermoving (2014) (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Reawaken (reviewed by Christian Renner)
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