Hello there local readers and music lovers! Mitchel here to give you another killer look through the power metal eye glass at the new Canadian fan favorite and Self-titled release – Traveler. Following the release of their debut 2018 demo; the 3 track compilation caused quite a buzz, landing them a record deal and soon their first full album 2019 release. In light of this 8 track self-titled gem, I’ve put together this review for you!
The opening track “Star Breaker” kicks a hole in the wall with a blast of energy! Delivering an undeniable 80’s vibe and that kick ass low-end drive we all love about power metal from the very moment it was born. The adventurous nature and impressive vocal range pull you into the great depths of imagination. The shredding guitars have every element needed, but add a warmer tone- certainly an excellent opening track.
The first two tracks (“Star Breaker” and “Street Machine”) are a nostalgic blast to the past. Painting dramatic battles and stories of deities of war and chaos- just like the bands I grew up loving, such as Iron Maiden or Iced Earth did. Their bassist has a very interesting combination of 80s power metal and dirty thrash style/tone which really works in their favor.
The composition and technicality change things up when you reach the third track- “Behind the Iron.” The drummer has an amazing sense of what to make the riffs pop out, and when to pop out and fill the foreground. It’s a very fun and powerful style. I enjoy the vocal structure and patterns in this tune. Passionate and catchy.
Right on time! “Konamized” is a two minute instrumental that brings all of the electricity back to the listener to prime them with nonstop screaming epic expression; giving you a hard push back in the right direction! Right into the face of the next track-“Up To You.” Pulsing Triplets and lyrical empowerment keep the fists pounding and the heart pumping. The intro is catchy as hell and allows the song to build and drop with a more dramatic change. Of course, their drummer understands their genre and manipulates the story as he sees fit.
The next track “Fallen Heroes” takes a bit of a more mainstream approach. Do not mistake that as an insult; as this jam grabs the passion as and integrity, the greats were so good at bringing to life. We all have unsung heroes, and we all love a great jam in their honor.
A clean Neo-classical intro leads us through our last two tracks. “Mindless Maze” begins slow and strong but quickly builds up to live to its name. I love that through this entire album I haven’t felt a loss of spark or fuel to the fire of each track. Every genre has their ‘Go To’s’ and a certain feeling they like to keep everyone attentive to. Traveler has an amazing way of doing just that. Which brings us to our last track “Speed Queen.” The classic tremolo picking and lighting fast fills from all of the instruments is nothing short of what you’d expect with a title like this. The guitarists really have an amazing style that is shifted into high gear on this last track to leave us with 5 minutes of “Oh, Hell yeah!” – With an epic finish to an epic album.
Well Damn! That was a righteous ride through another righteous album. I will be adding this to my power metal montage! Keep your eye out for my next review! Until then- THRASH FAST!
2. Street Machine
3. Behind the Iron
5. Up To You
6. Fallen Heroes
7. Mindless Maze
8. Speed Queen
Label- Gates Of Hell Records
Matt Ries – Guitars
Jean-Pierre Abboud – Vocals
Chad Vallier – Drums
Dave Arnold – Bass
Toryin Schadlich – Guitar
Edited by Samantha Crocker