... of wariwulfs and bluotvarwes

1. ... of wariwulfs and bluotvarwes
2. Undead insanity
3. Taste of fear
4. Wariwulf
5. Messenger of death
6. Sign of the cross
7. Fair maiden mine
8. Hearteater
9. Hagr
10. Bletzer
11. Hagen von Stein

Sören van Heek (Drums)
Sven D‘Anna (Vocals)
Dano Boland (Guitare)
Michael Maass (Guitare)
Volker Leson (Bass)

Son of Darkness (1995)
Battle of Metal (1997)
Bound by Metal (1999)
Head of the Deceiver (2001)
Odin (2003)
Magic Circle (2005)
Goochan (2007)
Thor (2009)

Recorded at Magic Hall Studio by Volker Leson, produced by Wizard
Mix and mastering by Achim Köhler
Concept album basing on the fantasy book trilogy about Hagen von Stein by the German fantasy writer Andre Wiesler
Cover artwork by Steve Argyle

Released 25/3-2011
Reviewed 15/3-2011


Germany’s Wizard are back with a new offering, last one with the same name as a Norwegian lizard did not do anything for me to be honest. It was an okay album but it was mainly well made with songs that had really nothing. This however does not effect how I review this album, I am not taking the prior album into my general view of this album. I will however bring it up a lot of times since it might be useful for anyone who has heard some album by Wizard before.

In the music the differences between this new album and the one before it are subtle. There is a bit wider spectrum in the music for this new album, it is faster, heavier, more powerful, more energetic but yet nimble and nice and more melodic as well. It is based on a story by Andre Wiesler, a trilogy of books about Hagen von Stein. Said author has helped the band to write the lyrics for the concept album about Hagen von Stein.

Then when we look at the sound there are some subtle differences but the overall sound of the aggressive, fast and powerful so-called power metal is still there, it is a bit more melodic and at the same time more powerful so there are some small differences, for the uninitiated there would be hard to make out which album. It is clearly in the trademark Wizard style but still it is different enough from the earlier works so that you do not feel too much that it was done before and that they are only repeating themselves. I would say that this album sound like Wizard does in general and that this album is a logical step in direction from Thor.

The album starts with the title track, a track that take us into what the album is all about with demons, warewolves, wizards and witches. It is also a high energy start which indicates quite well what to expect as we move further into the album. It is also a very good track with great energy and a really good chorus. The track following the first is called Undead Insanity and it is a guide to how a great song within the genre should sound with power, energy and all you can expect, did I say that it has a feel of a real anthem in the chorus.

There are many great track to count from this album, the third track is good as well, the fifth, the eight, tenth and eleventh are other really good tracks of this album and I can clearly state that this album is a definite improvement from the one that came before it, which I did not really care much for at all.

Thor was really just a really well prepared cover or wrapping while this new album is much more than just that, it has something more, something better. It also has many tracks that sound just like I think that power metal should sound which makes it into a really great album, especially for the power metal genre.

Wizard themselves say that this is their most perfect album to date and I am not going to argue that point, it is as they say, they have not done anything better than this fantasy inspired concept album. I have heard them many times this band but I would say that it is not until now that it feels like they have done something that will not just end up somewhere among all other power metal, this time they have done something that stands on its own.

I would say that they have dared to go further this time, this of course without compromising their sound but they are pushing the songs harder, they dare to try more things it sounds like and that has made for a much better album than any of the earlier and if we compare to the prior it is miles ahead.

So in the end I would say that the Wizard manages to create some magic with their new album and it also creates some great atmosphere for all the little demons and wizards that will buy and listen to this album. I enjoyed this album much more than I thought I would, but sure there are some stuff that do not impress as much but to be fair, the Wizard has finally managed on conjure up something that I can really enjoy.


Label - Massacre Records
Three similar bands - Helloween/Metallium/Manowar
Recensent: Daniel Källmalm