Review NORTHTALE ‘Eternal Flame’

NorthTale is the brainchild of Brazilian/American guitarist Bill Hudson. Some of you might be familiar with the name of Hudson from his work with U.D.O., Jon Oliva’s Pain and others. Next to the collaboration with these well-known bands the guitarist always had a passion for melodic power metal, and it was in 2017, when he started to make his dream of an own band become reality when founding NorthTale.

The debut album saw the light of day in 2019 and two years later the sophomore longplayer is ready to be shipped to the record stores. ‘Eternal Flame’ is the title of NorthTale’s second album which, at the same time, is the debut of the new singer Guilherme Hirose.

‘Eternal Dream’ offers more than one hour of melodic metal and one of the highlights is the racing ‘Future Cells’. Density and power, these are the main characteristics of the song and listening to it brings up the question of who singing? This voice sounds familiar and indeed, no less than Kai Hansen (Helloween, Gamma Ray) adds vocals to this excellently smashing tune. The collaboration also showcases in a good way, where the source of inspiration can be found. Bands like Helloween and others had and have an impact and influenced the music on ‘Eternal Flame’.

If the band did themselves a favor in covering with ‘Judas Be My Guide’ is a question everyone needs to answer individually. The song, originally from Maiden’s ‘Fear of the Dark’- album, sound good and there are enough own songs on the album that such a cover wasn’t necessary. It’s probably more fandom and paying tribute to another impactful band in metal. Considering the next track, ‘Nature’s Revenge’, NorthTale shows that they have enough tools at hand to write eleven-minute songs that don’t disappoint. And am I the only one that thinks about Hirose’s voice and phrasing showing parallels with Michael Kiske, esp. in the higher pitch?

‘Eternal Flame’ is a good album and with Dennis Ward at the helm, sound and production are excellent. The thing with this kind of records though is, that the genre frames are limited and albums, like ‘Eternal Flame’, are existing more than ones. Therefor it is important to let the maximum creativity flow to not became repetitive. NorthTale manages this challenge rather good, and the album has a good flow. Good music, well-crafted and with some twists in the detail, that is ‘Eternal Flame’.

Rating: 7 out of 10.

Tracklist:

  1. Only Human
  2. Wings of Salvation
  3. Future Calls
  4. North Tale – Eternal Flame – The Land of Mystic Rites
  5. Midnight Bells
  6. Eternal Flame
  7. In The Name of God
  8. Ride The Storm
  9. King Of Your Illusion
  10. Judas Be My Guide
  11. Nature’s Revenge 1
  12. Ivy

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Melodic Power Metal

Release Date EU: November 12th, 2021

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