Here you are then boys and girls. Get your air Strats out because you've got yourselves a real live neighbour baiter here.
Astral Doors should be huge and why they are not is a bit of mystery but if Jerusalem, their sixth album, does not catapult them into the mainstream Metal consciousness then nothing will. It is a quite delicious chunk of good old fashioned keyboard laced Heavy Metal that the mighty Dio pioneered.
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'Jerusalem' is one of the heaviest things Astral Doors has done. It's got a big chunky sound and a bang-up production job and opener 'Seventh Crusade' leaves you in no doubt of the album's intentions, instantly grabbing you by the grits and not letting go for the remaining fifty minutes.
Killer tracks? Well, the aforementioned 'Seventh Crusade' would certainly be a good place to start and I reckon 'Child Of Rock 'n Roll' has the accessibility to make it a future stage favourite.
Then there is the excitable gallop of 'With A Stranger's Eyes', 'Babylon Rise' and 'Operation Freedom'. In fact, there is not a bad track on here and it is quite possible that your air guitar will not be going back in it's case until the album has played itself out.
It is not perfect though. 'Jerusalem' thunders along with little variation and were it not for 'Lost Crucifix' offering a respite to the metallic charge, the album would come close to sounding a bit samey. Still bloody loud though.
The other criticism is that the band does not have the momentum of innovation and whilst not being a Dio clone 'Jerusalem' does tend to stick to the template pretty closely which could hamstring them if they are not careful.
That aside, with 'Jerusalem', Astral Doors have a damn good go at filling the huge void left by the passing of Ronnie James Dio, which in my book is no bad thing.
So if you are still grieving the loss of great man, Jerusalem should go some way to numbing the pain.
Don't bugger about, get it.