Van Ee - Dance With An Angel
Rokarola Records
Melpot Metal (mostly US power)
11 songs (55'18)
Release year: 2000
Reviewed by Chris

Imagine 80's old school Hard-Rock with nowadays US like Power Metal song structures and production. That's how it feels when I listen to this very good record from VAN EE. Van Ee is a long run drummer, I say long run cause he's been around since a while (around 20 years). Sometimes reminding me old Hard-Rock Bands like Honeymoon Suite & Winger or more powerful formations like Symphony X, the album is a wonder of power metal, a lot of variety in the songs and a very original song-writing.

The music is square, but yet melodic and always very powerful This album being a solo effort from Mr. Van EE, he teamed with 3 singers and a guitar player for this album. One of the singer being Ayeron's vocalist Robert Soetebeek. The music contains some progressive moments then and there and you can feel how the music is constructed around the drumming part. That last one being remarkably done. Having different singers is a bit disconcerting, as you get the feeling to listen from different bands, but it also adds variety to the album (which doesn't need it really, being already quite rich on variety already).

The first instrumental track, drum based of course, Dance with an Angel is simply amazing !!!! If you like good drums solos with a good guitar in the back to enhance the track melodically, you're gonna love it. I personally find it incredible !!! It outlines perfectly the quality and musicianship of Ersnt Van EE And although instrumental is far from being my favorite, it certainly is my favorite track of the album. It contains a perfect atmosphere, with smart keyboards in the background, some riffs then and there, but the well, the key element is the amazing drumming piece here. Excellent ! The second inst. track is a drum solo, not bad but more "usual". It's nicely done but doesn't top a Mike Terrana or even better : Yoshiki (but I haven't found a drummer on Earth that can compete with him anyway) ! Third instrumental track is more atmospheric track, more progressive than the first one, and this one will outlines the guitar player as much as the drummer.

The production is perfect, a crisp and clear, always powerful sound. The artcover is magnificent, using CG graphics the way it should be.

In the end this album is very interesting, although it looks a little bit too much like a drum show or demonstration. I don't care personally, but you cannot really assign a style to the album, its power metal sometimes, then sometimes it gets more progressive, or will turn out to be 80's style Hard-Rock... hard to keep track at the end. But if you don't mind melpot albums then you might want to check this one out. Whatever the style is, you'll get raw powerful and melodic music, that's for sure. What I prefer the most is the 80's touch in the songs, and of course the impressive drumming parts. If you're into power metal, and like good drumming, be sure to check that one out.

Killing Songs :
Shot Down, Faces Of Death, Dancing With An Angel (amazing!), Pleasure And Pain
Chris quoted 78 / 100
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