STARDUST – Kingdom of Illusion
BAND URL: https://www.facebook.com/stardustaor
Hungarian hard rockers Stardust impressed me with their stellar Highway to Heartbreak opus from 2020, so naturally, I was excited about this brand-new offering named Kingdom of Illusion and curious as to how the eleven-track effort would compare to its predecessor.
How do these compositions fare then? The short answer is pretty fucking well. Following a suitably grandiose introduction, a big and crunchy riff announces itself and these gents are literally firing on all cylinders eight seconds later. Yes, Stardust are doing what they do best here, and there is no shortage of tasty hooks, classy melodies, or gloriously addictive tunes to be found and reveled in, my friends. While the record is packed to the rafters with stadium-sized choruses and vocal pyrotechnics that are bound to enthrall you from the very first listen, there are some rather clever and sophisticated details and arrangements to be discovered and enjoyed too, which is merely another of way of stating that Kingdom of Illusion and its song material contains depth and dynamics. A fabulous band and a stately piece of work whose highlights include the unashamedly catchy ‘Heroes’ and the powerful ballad titled ‘Don’t Know What You Got…Till It’s Gone’.