It’s no secret that I love power metal; Finnish veterans Stratovarius a firm favourite. And so, when the first few bars of “Hypocrisy”, the first song on Impellitteri’s new album “The Nature of the Beast”, rang out, I was enthralled. Add to this lyrics that paint the world in dark hues, and you’ve got something captivating. Chris Impellitteri is a lauded lead guitarist, and is recognised in the media as one of the fastest guitarists in the shred style. Him, Marty Friedman and Paul Gilbert; all in the same league. On this album, Rob Rock is our “master of ceremonies”, and man, can he wail! His falsetto is perfection. Listen to the refrain, “Run for your life…” and you’ll know what I mean. The rhythm machine is anchored by James Pulli on bass, and propelled ever forward by Jon Dette on drums. Phew! This album is unrelenting.
The first couple of songs introduce the villains: there is the devil, the movie star, the werewolf, and the Phantom of the Opera. “Wonderworld” presents the listener with a future dystopia, a surveillance state bent on controlling the minds of civilians: “Computers taking over for you… Dependence on the virtual machine.” It made me think of George Orwell’s terrifying future visions in his book, “1984”. At the “Gates of Hell” a war is waged to end all wars!