Metalium - Incubus - Chapter VII
Massacre Records
Heavy / Power Metal
10 songs (46'40)
Release year: 2008
Metalium, Massacre Records
Reviewed by Marty
Metalium first emerged back in 1999 with a great debut album Millennium Metal and followed it up soon after with another solid album State Of Triumph. Ever since then, the band has tried to recapture the glory of earlier albums with last year's Nothing To Undo - Chapter 6 starting to finally put the band back on the right track. Their albums had become boring and predictable and an almost self-parody of the whole power metal genre. Many musicians including Chris Caffery (Savatage, TSO), Mike Terrana (Rage, Masterplan) and Jack Frost (Seven Witches) have come and gone but the nucleus of vocalist Henning Basse, guitarist Mattias Lange and bassist Lars Ratz has been the core of the band for quite a while now. With their newest album Incubus - Chapter 7, Metalium also introduces us to new guitarist Tolo Grimalt with Lars Ratz also taking on production duties in album that deals with themes of life, death, morality and religion. I've had this promo for a while now and kept pushing it aside and not really expecting anything all that special. What a surprise! I've been giving this album some serious listening over the last week and what we have here is a very diverse album that offers the listener a mix of power metal, traditional heavy metal and melodic heavy metal; all presented in a much more darker fashion than ever before.

After a short epic march-like intro, Resurrection blasts out at the listener with its fierce, hammering double bass fuelled U.S. power metal sound. Lots of dynamics break up the flow with big gang shouts for the chorus section. The variety and diversity in the material here is really what makes this album. There's never really any point where the term "generic power metal" enters your mind. Tracks like Gates and Sanity offer up solid and aggressive mid tempo metal with killer riffs and great strong vocals by Henning Basse whereas speedy German "riff heavy" power metal is front and center with Never Die, At Armageddon, Meet Your Maker and the aforementioned Resurrection. Take Me Higher ventures into melodic heavy metal territory with more melody in the chorus section and some solid drop D tuning for the main riffs. The title track Incubus with its dark and ominous tone along with slow and trudging riffs brings Dio era Black Sabbath to mind. Keeping with the Dio train of thought, Hellfire also uses the slow trudging tempo and sounds similar to Dio material from the 80's.

Henning Basse sounds better than he has ever sounded on this album and the production job is top notch; giving this album a thick and heavy sound with drummer Michael Ehre hammering away in the background. Shredding as well as very tasteful lead guitar work is found on each and every track with some of the best riffs this band has ever written. There's nothing all that original here but the term "filler" really never enters your mind when listening to this album. Everything just seems to fall into place for Metalium with Incubus - Chapter 7 with track after track of very solid heavy metal. The diversity in song styles and tempos is a refreshing change and gives Metalium more dynamics to their sound over previous albums. Fans of classic German power metal and heavy metal will find lots to like here. Although very different in overall sound, this band has finally been able to recapture the quality of their first two albums. Too bad it took 5 albums to finally do it! Easily their best since State Of Triumph, we can once again take these guys seriously....

Killing Songs :
Resurrection, Gates, Incubus, Never Die and Hellfire
Marty quoted 80 / 100
Other albums by Metalium that we have reviewed:
Metalium - Nothing To Undo reviewed by Chris and quoted 60 / 100
Metalium - Demons of Insanity: Chapter Five reviewed by Mike and quoted 49 / 100
Metalium - As One - Chapter Four reviewed by Jay and quoted 43 / 100
Metalium - Millenium Metal reviewed by Crims and quoted 85 / 100
Metalium - Hero-Nation reviewed by Mike and quoted 82 / 100
To see all 7 reviews click here
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