Freedom of Speech

Label: Pride & Joy Music
Three similar bands: Iron Maiden/Helloween/Blind Guardian

Rating: HHHHHHH (5/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
11. Metasphere
2. Freedom Of The Press
3. Life
4. Whispering Winds
5. Digital Mind
6. Belief
7. Your Throne
8. Isolation
9. The Deal
10. Devil’s Game
11. Price Of Time
12. Run Benjamin
13. Whispering Winds (Orchestral Version)

Rob Lundgren - vocals
Peter Moog - guitar
Kai Stringer - guitar
Florian Herte - bass
Thomen Stauch - drums


Daniel Heiman - vocals
Oliver Palotai - keyboards

Mix & mastering by Christian "Moschus" Moos at in Viersen, Germany
Cover artwork by Andreas Marschall
Mentalist character designed by Thomas Ewerhard

Released 2020-08-28
Reviewed 2020-09-14

pride & joy

läs på svenska

It is Freedom of Speech, a pretty important part of a free world, that stands as title for the debut of the band Mentalist. They happen to have the same name as their mascot The Mentalist who on the cover for this debut album stands in front of a crowd that has symbols of repressed nations behind them, nations where freedom of speech, personal liberties and other freedoms are set aside for the personal interest of the leaders. So, both title and cover are pretty cool, but what about the album itself?

Power metal, heavy metal, melodic metal, you can almost take your own pick as all of them fits. There are some progressive touches and an almost storytelling tone to this album, it sounds fresh and modern yet with a classic touch as well. The songs are easy to take to and to like, but there are some smaller surprises as well. The singer is good, there is also some guest singing from Daniel Heiman who was heard in Lost Horizon a while ago. Oliver Palotai from Kamelot does the keys for the band, when are on the subject of guests. And they manage to sell 68 minutes of their music, much thanks to good depth and variation, an album that is easy to take to and yet difficult to grow tired with.

Freedom of Speech is great, the album I mean, but also the fact that it is what I am exercising to express my opinions about this album. The songs are very strong and the only little niggle I have is that the songs that are over eight minutes could have been shorter as they feel like they have a little bit too much filling, it would have been more direct and dynamic to make them shorter – but that is a bit of nit-picking. I find this album to be excellent to listen to and a good showcase that the old and tired genres aren’t always as old and tired as they seem when you are going through album after album for review, sometimes you find a spark of light.

The message of The Mentalist may be positive or negative, but the tone it is delivered in is rather compelling anyway so it would not be a bad idea to listen. That means that it is an album worth checking out, and that there is a fair chance that you will find it quite appealing. But just calling an album Freedom of Speech should garner interest in the times we are living where that freedom is more and more repressed by regimes and algorithms on social media. So, I use my freedom of speech to conclude that this album is worth checking out.