Sound — 9
When I first bought this album, I had high expectations, because their previous album (Sonic Firestorm) is a power metal masterpiece. But I knew it was going to be a great album when I heard "Through the Fire and Flames". I perfect power metal anthem from the beginning to end. The musicianship is great (too bad Herman Li and Sam Totman are always drunk as a monkey live and sometimes mess up on their parts). ZP Theart displays the generic power metal voice which I love sooo much, dave displays so trememdous drumming which has to be fast to keep up with herman and sam. Vadim plays so excellent keys, the intro to Through the Fire and Flames is metal-horn worthy. The guitar is great, lots of nintento noices which adds to their music and making it that much more awesome. Herman and Sam played much more technical guitars then on their previous albums, but this sometimes causes them to screw up live, but hey, no ones perfect. Some great bass playing, exspecially in "Body Breakdown" by the ex-bass player Adrian Lambert, very skilled. And in a few of the songs you can hear some gutteral vocals courtosy of herman and sams ex-bandmate from their black metal days, Lindsay Dawson, which makes it even more unique from most power metal, which usually has only clean voices, but it works for the songs.
Lyrics — 9
There lyrics are pretty stereotypical power metal, but has their ever been anything wrong with that. I personally love the lyrics, they always get me fired up and ready for anything. Very fantasy themed about epic battles, quests, fighting demons, crushing evil. Songs usually don't have a particular theme to them, but it doesnt't do nething to make the songs worse, I personally love the lyrics, which are sung beautifully by south african ZP Theart (Yes, it's ZP, it does not "stand" for anything). He has a beautiful voice that adds to the music and makes dragonforce great.
Overall Impression — 10
If it wasn't for this album, power metal would not be becoming popular, this was the break-trough record power metal was waiting for. Now kids who are getting into dragonforce are discovering a world of fantasy and beauty and are discovering vetern power metal artists who deserve our praise, such as Blind Guardian, Galneryus, Stratovarius, etc. My favourite songs from the Album are "Storming Through The Burning Fields", "Through The Fire And Flames', and "Trail Of Broken Hearts". This CD is a must have for the power metal fan. If someone stole this CD, I'd rip out their heart.