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Articles Home » 2002 Articles » Firewind - 2002 Between Heaven And Hell
Firewind - 2002 Between Heaven And Hell

Gus G - guitars
Stephen Fredrick - vocals
Konstantine - bass
Brian Harris - drums

This is melodic metal at it's best. Aptly named, with the image and sound to back it up. Along with the fantastic operatic wall of sound that is Nightwish' 'Century Child', my ears are starting to get a little sore due to the aural pleasure and privilege. Firewind is built on the six-stringed prowess of Greek guitar-god Gus G (gosh, that's plenty of G's!!). Along with his countryman Konstantine, they hook up with an American duo: the former Billy The Kid and Kenziner vocalist Stephen Fredrick and up and coming drum behemoth Brian Harris (Vainglory, Zanister). The result, a metal meltdown bought about by a Firewind maelstrom. The music is not as dark as some of Gus' previous works (ie: Dream Evil, Mystic Prophecy), so it manages to stay appealing to those with a melodic bent. You can tell his love of Yngwie Malmsteen and in particular, The Scorpions shines through like a beacon. With these two influences, it ensures some continuity toward pure melodic metal, rather than some of the darker sub-genres out there.

The Songs
A rip-snorting opening greets us with the title track 'Between Heaven And Hell'. Jeez this is manic stuff! No less stirring is the power-drive of 'Warrior', a tale of heroes and battlehardened glories from centuries past. 'World Of Conflict' in contrast reminds us of the current era in which we live, portrayed in aural/musical terms. A cover of The Scorpions 'Pictured Life' (from 1976's 'Virgin Killer LP) is given a 26 year wake-up call. I don't ever remember it being this heavy. wow!! I wonder what Uli-John and Klaus think of it? 'Tomorrow Can Wait' is played at a more conventional speed, Harris laying off the double-kick drums for most of the track (until the end that is!). Again a perfect blend of power and melody. A personal favourite of mine is 'I Will Fight Alone', with lyrics and a songtitle I feel completely at home with (perhaps my life motto? lol..). The brutal riffing and drumming revisit in the form of 'Destination Forever', 'Fire' and 'Firewind Raging'. Yes, brutal being the operative word. The two instrumentals 'Oceans' and 'Northern Sky' sees Gus walking the same path as Vinnie Moore, 'widdly diddly' to the max, as only a disciple of neo-classical styles would know. The last track 'Who Am I' could be a tribute to Malmsteen, such is the similarity.

In Summary
The David Chastain production ensures that all the years of experience he's picked up working with metal bands is absorbed into the Firewind project, and it shows! As expected, this album has drawn a lot of positives from the Metal Fraternity, and rightly so. At this point Firewind appear to be more project based, particularly with Gus G having his guitar picks vested in so many other bands at present. If Firewind can progress beyond such a promising start as 'BHAH', then the next one is gonna be ballistic! Right now, someone's putting the blowtorch underneath this metal rocket.. watch out for the sparks!


Track Listing:
01 Between Heaven And Hell
02 Warrior
03 World Of Conflict
04 Destination Forever
05 Oceans
06 Tomorrow Can Wait
07 Pictured Life
08 Firewind Raging
09 I Will Fight Alone
10 Northern Sky
11 Fire
12 Who Am I

Related Articles:

Firewind - 2002 Between Heaven And Hell

Firewind - 2004 Forged By Fire

Firewind - 2006 Allegiance

Firewind - 2008 The Premonition

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