The Best Power Metal Album - Metal Storm Awards 2016





Ghostlights features another emotional, epic duet between Tobias Sammet and Jørn Lande. Honestly, do you even need any more reason to listen to this album? It's unfathomable that anyone would need any better justification than "Let The Storm Descend Upon You" to embrace Avantasia once more, but on the off-chance that somebody does, Ghostlights has much more going for it. The album sports the usual roster of incredible guest musicians and features a variety of genres and song structures to accommodate the variety of voices. Ghostlights is in every way a typical Avantasia album - that is to say, an exceptional power metal album.

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DGM has always been able to pump out some proper power metal tunes that stick, but has always had trouble with consistency, which may be why they're not on everyone's radar. However, The Passage is the real deal from the first note till the last, and has finally propelled DGM to the enviable position of being a nominee of the annual Metal Storm Awards. Expect unrelenting melodic guitar riffs, air-guitar worthy soli, fantastic vocals and straightforward songs which hit you like a train, but also plenty of detail worthy of smashing the "replay" button again and again.

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You know we couldn't fill this category without including one traditionally goofy Euro-flower metal album. You know the hooks, you know the buzzwords, you know the epic majesty - but that doesn't make Freedom Call any less glorious and mighty. Master Of Light is full of the uplifting refrains, confident soloing, and utterly silly lyrics that no true power metal fan can ever get enough of. "Metal Is For Everyone" and so is Freedom Call; hear the Call today.
Holy Grail's youthful blend of power, thrash, and traditional heavy (sprinkled with other assorted nods and winks) makes a bold resurgence on Times Of Pride And Peril. Back to the realms of ambitious songwriting, pulverizing rhythm, and wild guitars firing off left and right, Holy Grail lives up to all the grandiosity implied by its name and promised by its exuberant debut seven years ago. This is power metal with bite, power metal that has known the sting of the sword; Holy Grail is power metal with a vengeance.

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When a band releases its 5th album and decides to make it self-titled, that's a real statement. It may signal a rebirth, or the band may feel it's their best yet and worthy of the band name alone. In the case of InnerWish, it could easily be both. Armed with a sweeping new vocalist and excellent new drummer, this self-titled record makes one hell of a statement. The Greek band plays a hard-hitting, gritty, almost US-power metal, and blends in enough symphonic elements for addictively epic results.

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Once again, Primal Fear delivers a riff-laden, sing-along, headbanging masterpiece with Rulebreaker. Ralf Scheepers hasn't lost anything in his vocal range and with having three guitarists on board, it's only natural that Rulebreaker has some pretty awesome solos, even double solos, which makes it even greater to listen too.

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Straight outta Greece, Serbia, Scotland, France, South Africa, the Vatican, Afghanistan, Japan, Poland, and Austria comes The Last Stand, charging forward with all guns blazing in a charismatic entrance so glorious it should be wearing wings and carrying an 18-foot lance. If you thought that Sabaton couldn't get any more heroic, cheesy, and ultra-melodic, you might want to double-check that you aren't currently invading Russia during the winter, because that was a pretty gosh darn foolish idea you had. Not since The Art Of War has Sabaton offered up such a varied album. Don your plate metal and saddle your horse; the time has come for your final battle.

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This prog/power epic is momentous from start to finish. After one listen, you won't know what hit you and how it happened. It's the commanding voice, the memorable complexity, the tight solos and that rhythm section. One of the most exceptional debut albums released this year, Sunburst's Fragments Of Creation puts the "power" in power metal! The riffs, the riffs, the powerful riffs!

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How Theocracy succeed at setting themselves apart from others in the pool of high-quality power metal bands is the way they balance aggression and melody, crunchy guitars and smooth delivery, punishing drums and soaring melodies, the dark and the light. There's no denying a slight thrash influence in this heavy power metal album, though it never strays a centimeter away from "melodic." This confident balance, without trying to be one or the other, is what gives Ghost Ship its own strong voice. So combine the sing-a-long choruses with the dark aggression and top with silky vocals and you have yourself a classic.

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Join Twilight Force, young girls and boys, on this great quest to defend the Twilight Kingdom against the dark lords of serious metal! Grab your enchanted sword and ride with our heroes on colorful dragons to the barren lands of evil, harsh metals, and battle the enemy with weapons such as sing-a-long choruses, lush orchestrations, and pure happiness! OK but for real though: how is the cheesiest album of the year also one of the best?

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