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Labyrinth: Return To Heaven Denied II- A Midnight Autumn's Dream

With both the progressive metal CD Freeman, and a release which saw even more changes Seven Days To Nowhere, which just felt a tad all over the place with what they were doing, Labyrinth attempted a somewhat diverse direction with their last couple of albums, both of which I still go back to regularly. Unlike the style of melodic power/progressive metal the band previously played these two were quite varied. Now just maybe in part as a bid to win back some fans who lost interest with this new direction, Labyrinth have gone back in time to their earlier power metal hit the classic album Return To Heaven Denied and released a sequel Return To Heaven Denied II: A Midnight Autumn's Dream.

One drawing card for this CD is when they released Return To Heaven Denied guitarist Olaf Thorsen was still in the band, well now Olaf has returned which is a huge plus. I must add though he is still with the band he first left Labyrinth to focus on that other very good Italian group Vision Divine, if you haven't heard this band and like the material of those such as Labyrinth then do yourself a favor and check them out.

Two points I should make are that firstly Return To Heaven Denied II: A Midnight Autumn's Dream is better than Seven Days To Nowhere. Secondly, anybody who was hoping Labyrinth would return to more of that previous musical style will be pleased with what they hear; the band has incorpoated the more modern Labyrinth stylings with their classic sound. Rob Tyrant still has one of the best voices around no doubt about it, and the rest of the band don't disappoint. I know some say that Labyrinth's earlier releases like Returned To Heaven Denied and the following Sons Of Thunder suffer from their production, for myself anyway that just added to the charm of these albums, well the new album does sound better in comparison.

With "The Shooting Star" you are reminded of RTHD, as Labyrinth bring back the music that opened and closed that album, that is before the band promptly takes off with motivating double kicks and guitars. Labyrinth kick it up a gear once more on "A Chance", though they do drop it back at times like at the introduction to the solo section. "Like Shadows in the Dark" is a slower track with a gripping chorus, and one of my favorites is "Princess Of The Night" as Labyrinth gets your head banging with this heavy and infectious number. A heavy catchy rocker called "Sailors Of Time" is up next with another great chorus, and the fiery "To Where We Belong" is more like the classic speed fuelled version of Labyrinth. "A Midnight Autumn's Dream" could probably be labeled a power ballad and the three tracks that follow have more great music on offer.

I suppose one of the traits that attracted myself to Labyrinth in the first place, is they are a band that has very much has their own sound, well that sound is present on Return To Heaven Denied II: A Midnight Autumn's Dream. This probably wont be regarded as the classic its predecessor Return To Heaven Denied was but I have no problems recommending the latest offering from Labyrinth, as it's a great CD courtesy of a fantastic band. Now how about a sequel to Sons Of Thunder?


Track Listing
1. The Shooting Star
2. A Chance
3. Like Shadows in the Dark
4. Princess of the Night
5. Sailors of Time
6. To Where We Belong
7. A Midnight Autumn's Dream
8. The Morning's Call
9. In This Void
10. A Painting on the Wall

Added: September 5th 2010
Reviewer: Scott Jessup
Score:
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 1268
Language: english

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