Terra Atlantica
Age of Steam

Label: Pride & Joy Music
Three similar bands: Rhapsody/Edguy/Avantasia

Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. Rebirth 1815
2. Across The Sea Of Time
3. Mermaids' Isle
4. Age of Steam
5. The Treachery
6. Forces of The Ocean, Unite!
7. Quest Into The Sky
8. Believe in the Dawn
9. Gates Of
10. Rage Of The Atlantica War
11. Until the Morning Sun appears

Tristan Harders - vocals
Nico Hauschildt - drums
Julian Prüfer - bass
Frederik Akkermann - guitars

A City Once Divine (2017)

Oleg Rudych
Gabriel Tuxen

Orchestral arrangements by Alex Hunzinger
Mix and mastering by Marc Wüstenhagen
Cover artwork by Dusan Marcovic

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

pride & joy

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The cover of Age of Steam is really great, I really like it, as it looks exciting and triggers the imagination. It is the second album by the band that calls itself Terra Atlantica and it continues the theme of the debut album A City Once Divine that was released in 2017. We are taken to the 19th century and the rise of Atlantis who with their advanced technology usher in the industrial revolution. They also threaten the British Empire who fights them for dominion over the seas – does it sound interesting?

Terra Atlantic does not take lesser travelled paths in their musical journey but do rather use all the really well travelled ones in order to tick all the boxes on the power metal checklists. They offer orchestral arrangements, choirs, catchy choruses, a fairly typical German power metal vocalist, lots of melody and ambitious arrangements, kind of what you expect from something within this genre – there are no surprises here. The conceptual nature of the album doesn’t really change the sensation of listening to a power metal album that follows the form very closely. The vocals and the production are pretty typical of the genre and can be described as neither better, nor worse than the genre stuff in general. The playing time is quite long though and the album isn’t quite varied enough to infuse all the 56 minutes with meaning, so why didn’t they cut away a few songs or minutes?

Age of Steam is a pretty decent album overall, it works and does probably appeal to power metal fans, at least to a portion of them. But Age of Steam doesn’t really offer us anything fresh, anything exciting, anything we haven’t heard before, it is quite a generic power metal release. It should be dramatic; the cover is melodramatic but this album probably a bit too restrained and ambitious and not one that bravely lets loose like the best. Rhapsody were quite brilliant before they thought they were amazing and turned really dull, Avantasia’s first album that didn’t seem to take itself too seriously was outstanding, Crystal Empire by Freedom Call is a timeless classic – the best epic power metal is the one that can’t be taken seriously and manages to stay silly and over the top without being ridiculous – this is too serious and therefore quite dull.

They hit more or less every pitfall possible with this album and it never really feels exciting or interesting, kind of cheesy but not in the good way. It is a decent effort but nothing that will stand any test of time, to be interesting you need to be great or original and Terra Atlantica is neither – and that is really too bad as I really want to like this album as I have always liked the myth about Atlantis and the cover is great too, so why couldn’t the album be great? I think that lack of imagination is the answer to that question, so let’s move on to the next album.