HOLLOW ILLUSION – Hollow Illusion
Classic metal on tap from Norway’s Hollow Illusion – very straight forward in a late 80’s / early 90’s fashion a la Black Sabbath, Dio, and black album period Metallica. Vocalist Magnus Mikkelsen Hoel has a warble to his delivery, sitting between modern rock and say Ozzy Osbourne which can work for some material like "Mercury Rising" but then sit like a bad burrito on others such as the bluesy "Now or Never".
Keeping the material at radio-friendly timing aids the continuity of the record – as does organ nuances for the ballad "Mountain on Solid Ground". There’s definitely a commercial aspect to a lot of the guitar hooks and melodies for "Rain", an area Hollow Illusion should continue to explore through their next record.
This self-titled debut should provide a good foundation for the band to build upon – as this has a smooth quality that could gain credibility with a good portion of the melodic metal audience.