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Intense - Second sight 4/5

Reviewed: 11-5-04


1. Intro - Premonition
2. One twenty
3. The winged
4. War of angels
5. Seeds of betrayal
6. The skull of Sidon
7. Inside torment
8. Collision of destinies
9. Autumnheart
10. Path of the dark
11. Your final breath

This is a band that should appeal to many fans. Staying away from the typical European style of power metal, with the symphonic and keyboard elements, and instead choosing to focus on solid power metal with great guitar work. These guys bring in their own sound, so to not take anything away from that, I won't make any specific band comparisons. I will however, give a list of some bands that could be in the same class as Intense. Fans of Iced Earth, Mystic Prophecy, Nevermore, Brainstorm, Manticora, Symphorce, Tad Morose, Rising Faith, and maybe even Angel Dust and Megadeth, could possibly find Intense as a great new band. That's quite a list, but Intense really does fit somewhere in the middle of these bands. They're not going to be one of the heaviest bands in this class, but surely have the catchy riffs that most of these bands have.

Vocally, Intense is great! Sean Hetherington has a nice voice, maybe sounding a bit like the singers of Manticora, Nevermore and Axenstar, but not quite to that extreme of tone, having a clearer voice. There are plenty of moments when you can actually hear the lyrics, and that's usually not the case in the metal world. Definitely a fresh sound with the vocals, excellent!

I usually don't rave about intro's, but "Premonition" is an awesome intro which leads to the catchy riff that starts track 2 "One twenty". Great song, but track 3 "The winged" is probably the highlight of the CD, with its fantastic chorus and one of the best (though short) guitar solos on the CD. The ultra-fast track 4 "War of angels", and the slower (that eventually picks up) track 5 "Seeds of betrayal" both bring a nice song variety. I also love the very memorable Track 9 "Autumnheart", and the last track "Your final breath" is outstanding, starting out slow with very good vocals, then picking up with its great chorus.

This is an excellent debut, and I hope these guys get recognized for the effort and thought that was put into creating the bands sound. There aren't any fillers, plenty of great riffs (the guitar work is awesome!), and there are a few slower moments that are very memorable. Those who love strong power metal with a nice song variety, don't need to look any further than Intense. Well done!




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