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(HB) - "Jesus Metal Explosion" & "Pääkallonpaikka"

Reviewed by:

"Philip Wooldridge"- (Ravenheart Music)

(Female Fronted) {Rock/Symphonic-Metal}-(Music)
Country: Finland
Length: NA
Release Date: 11/24/2010
Band Members: Johanna Aaltonen - Vocals Antti Niskala - Piano
  Samuel Mäki-Kerttula - Drums Tuomas Kannisto - Bass
  Bob - Guitar Sofia - Guitar
Track Listing: 1.)-The Jesus Metal Explosion
9.)-Joy Upon the Lord
10.)-The Lord of Lords
  3.)- Is It Time 2  
  4.)- Hands of Grace  
  6.)-Holy Bible  
  8.)-King's Design  


Here we have two brand new additions to the HB canon, their second English language album The Jesus Metal Explosion, this time a version of their 2008 Finnish release Piikki Lihassa, and their new CD in Finnish called Pääkallonpaikka (please don't ask me to pronounce it!), which translates as Golgotha (or Calvary) in English. They will always be compared to their fellow countrymen Nightwish, however you have to add some Lunatica into their sound, especially with Johanna Aaltonen's voice. These releases are again premier league symphonic metal superbly produced with choir, orchestra and a suitably massive sound. Although they are a devoutly Christian band (HB doesn't refer to a pencil!) they are surprisingly little known outside Christian rock circles, it is OK for Therion to be equally proudly pagan, so there should be no boundaries. The devil doesn't have all the good music, and I'd much prefer a band to sing about something they believe in rather than a load of banal nonsense. Turning to the English album first, their fusillade includes seven dynamite symphonic pop metal missiles, prime example being the opening shot and title track 'The Jesus Metal Explosion' (video on Female Voices Blog). Interspersed between the volleys are a trio of gentler piano ballads bringing calm between the bombast. The first half of Pääkallonpaikka is also packed with monster tracks with the groovy Perkeleitä adding some fat synths. The melody of 'La Finlande de mon Coeur' sounds very much like that of Ultravox's 'Hymn', I hope Midge Ure doesn't hear it or the legal eagles could be on the case. The second half then alternates between top quality gentler and heavier numbers. HB are one of the few bands equipped to fill the vacuum left when Nightwish have some downtime. Shoot off to their emplacement at for more bombshells, an explosive score for both albums of 9 out of 10.





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