Mystic Prophecy - Savage Souls
Massacre Records
Heavy / Power Metal
11 songs (59'57)
Release year: 2006
Mystic Prophecy, Massacre Records
Reviewed by Marty
Savage Souls is the forth album by this German power metal band and it also marks the first release without Greek guitar god Gus G. who left just after the recording for the last album Never Ending was completed. Markus Pohl was brought in as a replacement guitarist and recently, the band added a second guitarist Martin Grimm, to officially launch the twin guitar attack of the "new" Mystic Prophecy. Original members bassist Martin Albrecht (Stormwitch) and lead vocalist R.D. Liapakis are still with the band and this time, R.D. Liapakis produces the album with help from veteran Fredrick Nordstrom in the mixing process. With a killer and very "muscular' sound and the new twin guitar attack, Mystic Prophecy has undoubtedly produced the best album of their career so far and one that will surely put them among the ranks as one of the best "pure" power metal bands in existence today.

Mystic Prophecy got off to a great start with their first two albums but Never Ending although great sounding and a solid start-to-finish album, was lacking in stand out or memorable tracks. It was starting to show the signs of stagnation; something all too common with power metal bands. With this new album Savage Souls, Mystic Prophecy has re-invented itself by playing off the strengths of vocalist R.D. Liapakis and unleashing a killer new album that is pure heaven for the riff enthusiasts and fans of the heavier side of power metal especially the U.S. power metal style. Savage Souls basically is one of those albums that offers solid rip-your-face-off heavy metal and the first three tracks are prime examples. Shadows Beyond My Soul gets things going with an awesome display of riff-infested U.S. power metal complete with the leather-lunged Bruce Dickinson/Maiden style of chorus. The verse sections are fierce and heavy yet the choruses catchy and very good; a staple of pretty much every track on this album. Master Of Sins uses a pounding heavy style with some great speedy double bass-fuelled riffs and another solid chorus. Evil Empires uses both speed and a more aggressive tone with the vocals and even borders on thrash metal at times. Other stand-out tracks include Deception Of Hate and Sins And Sorrows that both pump out very "muscular" and heavy riffs with yet another example of the abundance of excellent and memorable chorus sections that can be found on this album. Nightmares Of Demons uses very energetic double-bass fuelled riffs but with a more Dio like chorus section.

The guitar sound is huge!! on this album and even rather simple riff patterns benefit from the monstrous, explosive sustaining power chords and the very clever usage of single note fills and harmonies to fill it all in. Every track is heavy, even the heavier sections of the power ballad closing track Into The Fire. Vocalist R.D. Liapakis has the perfect voice for this kind of metal. He can be strong and melodic and yet menacing and fierce when called upon. His voice has similarities to Bruce Dickinson and John Bush (Armored Saint, Anthrax) and gives Mystic Prophecy a very "meaty" sound. Besides the tons of riffs, guitarists Markus Pohl and Martin Grimm offer both shredding and very tasteful lead guitar work. There's not a note of flowery Euro power metal to be found anywhere on this album. The band has taken a more darker and apocalyptic tone lyrically this time and it fits the style of power metal very well. I'm very impressed by the production as well in that you'd be hard pressed to find a better sounding power metal album out there.

Fans of the classic Painkiller era Priest and who also enjoy the heavier side of power metal like Gamma Ray, Brainstorm and older Iced Earth yet with the melodic sense of Iron Maiden should run out now and get this!! The tracks I touched on are personal favorites yet any one of the 11 tracks could very easily fall into that category as it depends upon the listener and personal taste. Easily Mystic Prophecy's best album to date, this one is also one of the best "pure" power metal albums I've heard in a long time. Get it and crank it!!

Killing Songs :
Shadows Beyond My Soul, Master Of Sins, Evil Empires, Savage Souls, Deception Of Hate, Sins And Sorrows and Nightmares Of Demons
Marty quoted 88 / 100
Other albums by Mystic Prophecy that we have reviewed:
Mystic Prophecy - Metal Division reviewed by Goat and quoted 75 / 100
Mystic Prophecy - War Brigade reviewed by Andy and quoted 69 / 100
Mystic Prophecy - Ravenlord reviewed by Thomas and quoted 80 / 100
Mystic Prophecy - Fireangel reviewed by Thomas and quoted 75 / 100
Mystic Prophecy - Satanic Curses reviewed by Marty and quoted 86 / 100
To see all 9 reviews click here
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