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AVANTASIA The Wicked Symphony/Angel Of Babylon Nuclear Blast (2010)


Tobias Sammet may have just recorded his Sergeant Pepper: his most ambitious project yet (and he's had a few!), Tobi releases two albums, containing two albums with 22 tracks and a host of rock legends as guests, concurrently...and it works.

Just the packaging alone makes a purchase of this worthwhile. A lavishly printed cardboard box containing a book of each album, as well as another with the history and story of the concept and loads of photos, with an opportunity of downloading three bonus tracks, a video and extra pictures! Wow...

If that's not enough, the music is nothing short of outstanding. The now-corny phrase 'all killer, no filler' certainly applies here and the guest vocalists, Jon Oliva, Michael Kiske, Bob Catley, Russell Allen, Klaus Meine, Ripper Owens and Jorn Lande to name a few, all put in stellar performances to enhance one's listening pleasure.

Superlatives will not do enough to laud Sammet's efforts here, if you're into power metal with more than a hint of classic rock, this is an essential purchase. A candidate for albums of the year.


Review by Nick van der Meulen


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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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