Crystal Ball

1. Crystallizer
2. Curtain Call
3. Alive For Evermore
4. S.O.S.
5. Crazy In The Night
6. Gentleman's Agreement
7. Let Her Go With Love
8. Beauty In The Beast
9. Death On Holy Ground
10. Satisfaction Guaranteed (Digipak Bonus)
11. Exit Wound (Digipak Bonus)
12. Dusty Deadly
13. Symphony Of Life

Steven Mageney - Vocals
Scott Leach - Lead- & Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards
Tony T.C. Castell - Rhythm Guitars
Marcel Sardella - Drums
Cris Stone - Bass

1999 In The Beginning
2000 Hard Impact
2002 Virtual Empire
2003 HELLvetia
2005 TimeWalker
2007 Secrets
2013 Dawnbreaker

2015 LifeRider
2016 Dèjá Voodoo

Stefan Kaufmann - outro guitar solo on "Crazy In The Night", "Death On Holy Ground"
and "Satisfaction Guaranteed"

Produced, mixed and mastered by Stefan Kaufmann at ROXX Studio, Solingen
Cover artwork by Thomas Ewerhard

Released 2018-04-27
Reviewed 2018-04-11



The crystal ball from Switzerland return with a crystallizing album with what appears to be a crystal skull on the cover – it is a pretty cool cover. The melodic heavy rockers from the same nation as Gotthard, whom they are quite similar to as well, has received ratings of three, four and five for their latest albums when we have reviewed them here at Hallowed. I think that we can conclude that they have made albums of varying quality. One thing I have noted is that when the artwork looks good, the album is good as well and this album certainly looks better than the two preceding it. The hope in advance was that this album would be anywhere near the great album Dawnbreaker that was released in 2013, but one of the troubles when making albums that follow a certain format is that it is a bit hit or miss if the album turns out good, so how about this one?

Stylistically they keep to the style they have established, melodic heavy rock with energy and catchy choruses. The vocals are good, same style as countrymen Gotthard. Good sound and plenty of energy are other reflections I make when I play through this album, and that it is more dynamic than its predecessor. Quite powerful sound, quite full of life and also short enough to remain interesting for the entire playing time even if you buy the digipak album that has two bonus tracks. The variation of the album is good as well and I think this album shows a Crystal Ball that is fresher and more vital than they have been in a while.

The opening salvo, the first two tracks can be described as an excellent opening with two great tracks that have a strong hit potential. It is a great opening to this album but it is not only those tracks that are really good, there are several really strong ones throughout the tracks that make up the album although the first two are the best in my opinion. There are one or two tracks that can be seen as something of fillers but no really weak one and while the argument that the album isn’t really breaking any new ground is valid, Crystallizer is good enough to make you forget about that. They are in fact making the melodic heavy rock of the highest quality, perhaps even better than acclaimed countrymen Gotthard at their best.

The tenth album by Crystal Ball might be their magnum opus and if you like the melodic heavy rock with catchy choruses and plenty of energy it is certainly an album well worth checking out. And it also shows that Crystal Ball can be quite brilliant when they do things right, like this album. Anyone who like this kind of music and does not check out and get himself or herself this album has to be considered something of a moron, because this is one of few albums in this genre that might be considered for the best of the year list when 2018 is to be summarised. Great stuff!





Label: Massacre Records
Three similar bands:
Betyg: HHHHHHH (5/7)
Recensent: Daniel Källmalm

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