Sound — 10
Dragonforce is back with their fourth studio album, and they are sounding better than ever. Advancing further with their sound every album, Ultra Beatdown sounds more mature, and is the most diverse album by the metal gods, Dragonforce, to date. In the first track, "Heroes of our Time," Dragonforce ups the ante by having more complex and catchy melody lines in the song. Also the song has many more slow parts than other songs in previous albums. Quite a few of the songs have slower parts in the songs that contrast the faster parts of the song. That's one element in this album that sets it apart from the rest of the albums. In the previous Dragonforce albums, apart from the ballads, most of the songs were preformed at breakneck speeds throughout the entire song. In this album there are many slower parts. The overall melodies in the album are more colorful, on the vocals, guitars, and keyboard. My personal favorite off the album was the song "Heartbreak Armageddon." In the guitar solo, you can hear techniques that sound like those of thrash legend Marty Friedman. The overall melody is amazing, after listening to it, you get the most epic feeling of triumphantness. It is simply amazing. The guitar parts are what most people listen for, and blow most people that appreciate shred, and epic guitar music, completley away. The shred duo, Herman and Sam, do a great job on Ultra Beatdown. Every song had epic, harmonized, and melodic shred. Another thing that sets this album apart, is there are different techniques used throughout the solos, and in the structures of the songs. Not every solo is fast. I think overall, this album is far more diverse and mature sounding. If you have never listened to Dragonforce before, this would be the perfect album to start with. If you have listened to Dragonforce before and were not impressed, I would give this album a listen it would change your mind. And Dragonforce fans, you won't be dissapointed.
Lyrics — 7
These are classic Dragonforce lyrics. For me, I don't pay much attention to them. ZP is a great singer, and does a wonderful just singing, but the lyrics are "fantasy lyrics" done in Dragonforce style. This is the part where most people are turned off, to me I can listen to the lyrics and sing them, but I really don't pay much attention to the meaning, I pay more attention to the melody. In this album, ZP does some pretty awesome melodies vocally, and they are really catchy. They go with the music perfectly, and are really epic, and triumphant. The songs are uplifting, and give you an adrenaline rush becasue they are that uplifting.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this was an amazing album. It is an improvment from Inhuman Rampage, and I know many fans from the days of "Valley of the Damned" that like this album. The guiar, vocal, and keyboard parts are for more mature sounding than in the previous albums. Dragonforce has evolved their sound, taking it one step further. Like I said earlier, if you didn't like them before, I would give this album a chance, it's very good. Herman, Sam, Vadim, Fred, ZP, and Dave display the complete mastery of their instruments in this album. All of the parts come together and sound great. I would recomend this to any fan of melodic music.