Dreamtale - Difference 4.5/5

Reviewed: 4-29-05


1. Lost souls
2. Wings of Icaros
3. New life
4. Lucid times
5. Mirror
6. World's child
7. Sail away
8. Fly
9. Secret door
10. We are one
11. Green fields

I am under the impression, and I could be wrong, that Dreamtale doesn’t have nearly as large a following as the more popular power metal bands such as Stratovarius and Sonata Artica. I certainly hope this is not the case, as I think Dreamtale is about the best thing going in power metal. They are certainly not the most original band around because they don’t do anything very different from the aforementioned bands, although they aren’t carbon copies either. This is their 3rd CD and they are showing no signs of songwriting burnout. The one change for this CD is that there is a new singer with the previous singer having left to spend more time with his other band. Other than the new singer being, on rare occasions, a little more throaty, the change in singers is not really noticeable.

As mentioned, this band is a very typical power metal band, but they have enough of their own sound that they don’t sound like they’re copying anyone else; they are also as good a group of songwriters as there are in the genre. The keyboards are secondary to the guitars, but the keyboards are more noticeable than they are for most power metal bands and they are extremely effective here. The guitars complement the vocal melodies perfectly, at times with melodic solos, other times with crunchy riffs and other times just complementing the vocals. There is a touch of symphonic metal in the guitar parts, but it's not too frequent. The majority of the CD is uptempo but there are 2 nice ballads and there are slower parts in some of the faster tracks also. While the CD is produced perfectly and the band sounds great, it is the songwriting that makes this CD a true standout. The band splits the songwriting amongst several members but there is no difference in quality. Of note, the new singer gets several songwriting credits including 2 solo songwriting credits, so he brings top songwriting ability to the band in addition to his excellent vocals. While the whole CD is well written, it hits a high point with “Secret door” and “We are one”. The former is the most catchy track on a CD that is filled with catchy tracks. Whether it’s the verse, the chorus, or the instrumental parts, the track just drips with melody. The following track, “We are one” isn’t quite as melodic from start to finish, but the verse has a slow build that just teases you like a juicy steak on the barbeque. The chorus, while good, doesn’t quite live up to the scintillating verse but the track is exceptional overall.

There’s nothing much else to say. Dreamtale is one of the true prizes of power metal and need to be recognized as such. They sound perfect, write great songs, are generic enough for mass appeal, but unique enough to not sound like a clone of other bands and are amazingly consistent from track to track and CD to CD. It’s always a little scary when a band changes singers, but Dreamtale has made that change with no negative effect on quality. This will clearly be one of my favorite power metal CDs of 2005.




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