Sweden’s METALITE returns with a brand new masterpiece “Exhibition One” that continues to build their legacy towards one of Power Metal’s elite.
The album is very relevant and futuristic, which has become their identity and what you expect from the band. They use musical elements outside the norm for Power Metal like some techno and tasteful use of sound effects.
Erica Ohlsson is simply one of the best female Power Metal singers out there. This is NOT Symphonic Metal, she’s belting out the tunes without the falsetto you often hear. She sings with power and emotion and brings the songs to life.
In typical Swedish fashion the songs have massive hooks, it’s almost like make Roxette or Ace Of Base a Heavy Metal band. Having said that, it’s not overly “Pop” or bubble gum sounding, there’s heavy guitars and thundering drums and bass. They use the keyboards more for effect, they don’t drive or over dominate the songs.
The album has 16 songs too! They could almost make the claim for a double album. I’m often concerned with I see this because I think there’s going to be a lot of “filler” songs, instrumentals or some short pieces between the songs. This one has legit 16 songs of Power Metal bliss.
The singles “Disciples Of The Stars” and “Blazing Skies” are strong, but I thought there’s even better tracks like “Free” And “Legendary” to name just a couple. The title track “Expedition One” is killer too.
Then you get to track 13, when you expect the album to wind down, they blow you away with “Sanctum Of Light”, a MASSIVE and beautiful anthem. In my humble opinion, this is the kind of song that separates the good from the great and the great from the legendary. Some might say it’s too commercial or AOR, but the hooks and chorus are off the charts. The song simply “angelic” and if you don’t feel something from this one you might need to check yourself.
If I was forced to compare them to other bands I would say this, imagine IRON SAVIOR and STRATOVARIUS. The fact Ohlsson is a woman doesn’t really matter, she’s singing with force, even more than Timo Kotipelto, who has a slightly different style than Ohlsson. They are deeply rooted in the legendary Swedish Metal tradition.
I’m going this one 9.5 stars of 10 as it checks all the boxes. Great songs, amazing production and with 16 tracks, they went all out to bring their fans the best album possible.
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Erica Ohlsson (Vocals), Edwin Premberg (Guitar), Robert Örnesved (Guitar), Lea Larsson (Drums), Robert Majd (Bass)