Gamma Ray - Somewhere Out In Space
Gamma Ray stands for quality music, and on this release I think they achieved something really special, it's simply packed with great melodies, bombastic passages and well-played Power Metal.
This album is very broad reaching in styles and this is a big plus, the flow of the album is fitting perfectly. I will comment on some of my favourite songs and in all fairness point out a couple that could have been better.

Beyond The Black Hole is not only the perfect opening song, it's also one of their all time best. A "start up the party" song with an amazing melodic guitar lead. The refrain is catchy and the great groovy mid-section works as a varied element. The bombastic rhythm section is blasting away with great force giving the song an extra level of energy.

With No Stranger (Another Day In Life) we find a calmer track with a cool relaxed atmosphere. The duelling guitar solo is a display of high skill and I like the way Kai's pretty melodic vocal's fits the atmosphere.

Somewhere Out In Space is one of the heaviest songs I know, insanely played drums, ultra fast guitar parts and a hammering bass is working in phenomenal harmony. Even though the song has a central chorus there are so many different parts and twists and turns along the way that it clearly stands out, being anything else than a standard chorus reliant riff based Power Metal track.
Valley Of The Kings is another Gamma Ray classic with a melodic keyboard melody and some great vocal passages. A short but nevertheless catchy song with a great mysterious vibe.

In Pray we find the albums slowest song, a ballad with a symphonic edge and some down to earth guitar leads. The chorus is a bit on the simple side and comes out without the bombastic edge I think would have fitted better. A just above average song that has a cool misty atmosphere.
The Winged Horse is the other not that great song on this album. The main vocal verses are a bit tame and not really the same high standard as so many of the other tracks. The song seems to lack something really exciting even though the guitar parts are very ear-hanging and well played, plus the keys offer a nice varied background.

Lost In The Future has a very bombastic flair covering its rhythm section, powerful double-bass drums, heavy pounding guitar riffs and a huge chorus. The track also features a nice flowing guitar solo.
Last put not least we find Shine On, a genius track that changes lanes quite a few times during its course. The keyboard supports the other instruments perfectly and we are treated with great detailed guitar passages, a fantastic chorus, tight bass lines, varied drums and a huge epic ending.

When taking a look at the musicians involved in the album it's highly experienced people we find. Kai Hansen knows his way with a guitar and his voice fits the music well even though he hasn't the best or most melodic voice in Metal. Dirk Schlächter plays a solid bass that is very much involved in the songs progression, Dan Zimmerman handles the drums with both strength and detail and Henjo Ricther lay down some cool keys and splendid guitar parts.

Lyrically we are dealing with one major topic, science fiction, both its negative and positive aspects. A couple of songs concerning more everyday related issues as finding the strength to get on with your life has also found it's way on the record. Most lyric parts are interesting, others more standard; overall they are fitting quite well with the musical side.

A few words concerning the production must also be stated. The quality is high, but not over the top high. There is lots of power coming from each instrument but it ends up being a bit muddy here and there, anyway I especially like the bass sound.

This album contains a great mixture of varied Power Metal, and it's just a treat that so many songs are downright fantastic.

Written by Tommy
Wednesday, September 3, 2003
Show all reviews by Tommy

Ratings

Tommy: 8.5/10

Members: No members have rated this album yet.


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RevelationZ Comments


Comment by E. G. (Anonymous) - Friday, September 12, 2003
I agree with the rating, but I think that 'Winged Horse' is a great song.


Comment by Hyena (Anonymous) - Wednesday, November 19, 2003
This album sounds like the guys really enjoyed playing. They had fun. The feeling also grabs the listener. Good.

Somewhere... is no doubt the best Gamma Ray album I've heard. There are many good songs in there. Compared to, for example, their sorry Powerplant -plate this is a very good album.

Musically Somewhere... must be considered a good effort. Guitars are very good at best as are the drums. Bass suports the tracks' structure well. Keyboards do theis job. Vocals... well, I like Kai Hansen more as a guitarist than as a vocalist.

The thing I like least is the lyrics. But if you're into poetry based on von Däniken's thesis, you'll find them quite nice.

An annoying surprise was, that despite appearing on the tarcklists, the cd I have lacks the bonus track Return to Fantasy. And the plate is not even a pirate copy!

Generally I agree with Tommy's detailed review. 8/10


Comment by Parimal Satyal (Anonymous) - Thursday, March 25, 2004
Well, the review covers a good range of ideas. The "Winged Horse" in my opinion - is one of the best songs ever. Of course, there is always a matter of taste :). Most of the parts, I agree. Good review :)
The album has a message almost - to move on, struggle for what you want - shine on!











Review by Tommy
None

Released by
Modern Music Records - 1997

Tracklisting
1. Beyond The Black Hole
2. Men, Martians And Machines
3. No Stranger (Another Day In Life)
4. Somewhere Out In Space
5. The Guardians Of Mankind
6. The Landing
7. Valley Of The Kings
8. Pray
9. The Winged Horse
10. Cosmic Chaos
11. Lost In The Future
12. Watcher In The Sky
13. Rising Star
14. Shine On

Bonus Track
15. Return To Fantasy


Style
Power Metal

Related links
Visit the band page

Gamma Ray - Official Website

Other articles
No World Order - (Tommy)

Live at Markthalle, Hamburg, Germany - October 20th, 2005 - (Nina)

Majestic - (Tommy)

Land of the Free - (Steen)

Land of The Free II - (Stuart)

Heading For Tomorrow / Sigh No More (2CD Set, Reissue) - (Brian)

Gamma Ray and special guests: Freedom Call - Live at Kulturbolaget, Malmö, Sweden - February 25th, 2010. - (Nina)



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