GAMMA RAY – 30 Years Live Anniversary
This one nearly got away from my pile of stuff to review, and so before I forget, I figured that we should at least write a few short sentences about this nicely packaged 2CD/DVD output by the well-known German power metal outfit Gamma Ray.
As its title suggests, what we have here is a live offering containing fourteen pounding metal tunes that are delivered in a sharp, focused, and tight manner. These guys are obviously quite disciplined and know exactly how to deliver muscular riffs and lofty melodies with great vocals on top of them, and you can tell that they are having fun here. With its crunchy and powerful sound not to mention that former Gamma Ray vocalist Ralf Scheepers makes a guest appearance, this release does have something cool going for it. "Avalon" and "New World Order" are an epic delight, and "Master of Confusion" is a pure tour de force of hard-hitting metal, but then "The Silence", "One with the World", and "Armageddon" never did anything for me, so my lack of unbridled enthusiasm undoubtedly ties in with the fact that I was never a fan of these guys as such and that I find their song material and records somewhat uneven in general with respect to quality and substance. The DVD is rather standard fare and is neither technically dazzling nor visually impressive by any stretch of the imagination, but watching these veterans enjoying the performance to such an extent is of course a huge plus.
"30 Years Live Anniversary" will undoubtedly appeal to fans of Gamma Ray or those who witnessed the live stream of the concert back in August last year and wish to have a souvenir of sorts, but the average fan of power metal can probably skip this one. Having said that, it is entertaining to a certain degree and the positives outweigh the negatives.