Anthems of the World

Label: Elevate Records under licence of Infinite Records
Three similar bands: Stratovarius/Altaria/Sonata Arctica

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
01. Destiny (StratospherE Feat. Timo Tolkki)
02. Hunting high and low (Kublai Kapsalis feat. Jari Behm and Elmas MT)
03. Black Diamond (Beto Vazquez Infinity)
04. Distant Skies (Marko Pukkila feat. Juhani Malmberg)
05. Eternity (Dark Horizon)
06. Hold on to your dream (Heart Attack feat. Bob Katsionis)
07. Anthem of the world - Andrea Atzori Tales and Legends with Patrik J Selleby)
08. Paradise (Heaven Denies)
09. Shine in the dark (Magma Lake)
10. Playing with fire (Gépmadár feat. Peter Schrott)
11. Father Time (Iliour Griften feat. Mike LePond, M° Mistheria)
12. S.O.S. (Eagleheart)
13. The Kiss of Judas (Silent Saga)
14. Halcyon days (Sunrise)

Various artists



Mixed and mastered by Iliour Griften except tracks 1,8,9,11 Mastered by Matias Kupiainen
Cover atwork by Harley Velasquez

Released 2021-05-27
Reviewed 2021-05-06


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Stratofortress is an ambitious project in celebration of Stratovarius, one of the premier metal bands from Finland. The Italian guy behind it, Iliour Griften has been joined by some known musicians and bands doing some of the fine songs of the Stratovarius career. There are also guest appearances by Stratovarius band members like Timo Tolkki, Jari Behm and Matias Kupiainen. The album gives us fourteen tracks starting with Destiny. A tribute album is a good way to show the importance of a band and what they might have meant to artists, but many times they tend to end up with songs that are very similar to the usual songs. But there are exceptions, like the great Sonata Arctica cover of I Want Out from the Helloween tribute from the early 2000s, so are they such songs of this one?

Well, not really as most of them are quite alike the original, there aren’t many that differ in any major way just the tiniest variation. Perhaps that is down to most artists on this release do exactly the same kind of stuff as Stratovarius does. The Hunting High and Low is somewhat different at least, the sound is not as great as what Stratovarius usually does, but it differs, some songs are better produced than others so there is a bit of variety throughout the fourteen tracks. Thanks to this variety it is an album that remains interesting for its entire duration of over seventy minutes.

No denying that this is a good album, great even. Songs like Hunting High and Low are amongst my absolute favourite songs and even though the covers aren’t of the same quality, they are still amazing and impressive songs. I think the selection of songs is a good one. What I like less is the fact that none of the songs feels like anything different from the originals, I like it when songs are given a new life by being presented differently and that doesn’t really happen here. Sure, there are female vocals on Hunting High and Low but the song still feels the same, why not slow it down, speed it up, alter things, keep the essence of the song but make it different? That can be said for many of the songs on this album, they are still great though.

I find myself wondering what the point is, and I did also find myself listening more to the actual Stratovarius songs I have rather than to this cover album. I feel like there is more novelty in the Stratovarius version of Destiny or Hunting High and Low than there is on the covers, they feel fresher and more exciting than these new recordings. I think that this is a great collection of songs, but not a very exciting album.