Agent Steel - Order of the illuminati 3.5/5

Reviewed: 7-25-03


1. Avenger
2. Ten fists of nations
3. Earth under Lucifer
4. Enslaved
5. Insurrection
6. Apocalypse (World without windows)
7. Forever black
8. Dance of St.Vitus
9. Dead eyes
10. Kontrol
11. Human bullet

Oh YES, this is more like it, something worthy of the name of Agent Steel, with piercing histrionic vocals, pummeling music that walks that perfect line of a blade between power metal and thrash. "Avenger" just starts out in thrashing, driving 100 mph glory, and is exquisite. "Enslaved" is another speed-blisterer, and that speed is clearly one of the best things on this CD. "Forever black" again is this speed offerer, and you really end up caught in the feeling of classic Agent Steel with the speed, the structure, the vocals, everything. Despite this, however, a lot of the slower and more midtempo sections and songs are also very effective in well done counterpoint.

Bruce Hall sounds a lot better than he did on 'The omega conspiracy', and the overall result is also a big step up...really something much more appropriate and worthy of the Agent Steel name. He alternates between Cyriss like high notes, some more clear power metal singing upper-higher, and there are also times he sings more mid-level, almost like Matt Barlow in Iced Earth. The lyrics, featuring the wacked out blend of mythology, apocalypse, prophecy, and conspiracy, is damned effective, and just quite awesome. In short, this is an awesome CD that offers something nicely different from the European power metal sound, and does it in a thrilling manner, and I think will greatly please fans of the original Agent Steel who were disappointed by 'The omega conspiracy'. Recommended!




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