Review by Janne Stark

Hasse Fröberg is foremost known as lead singer of eighties melodic metal band Spellbound and lately as lead singer of progressive band The Flower Kings. When Hasse now puts his name on his own product, it’s closer to the last, but with hints of the first. The band’s first effort proved he was definitely on the right path. A strong debut indeed. The follow-up, Powerplay, starts off with My River To Cross. I totally love the way this track builds up. It starts out quite gentle, pop-symphonic and in the vein of The Flower Kings, to suddenly burst into some really heavy intense powerful guitar riffing, to move into the melodic, almost pomp-oriented chorus. All of it ornamented with Hasse’s killer vocals. The World Keeps Turning goes in another direction, uptempo melodic rock with an almost AOR:ish touch, at times a bit reminiscent of Asia. Guitarist Anton Lindsjö is a new bright star to keep an outlook on! Great, soulful yet technical playing, which he also shows in The Final Hour. After the soft ballad Waves, the album continues with Venice CA which reminds me of early Toto meets Starcastle meets Trillion. A great melodic track with an almost poppy chorus part. On of my favourites is the heavy, hard rocking Is It Ever Gonna Happen with an almost Purple:ish touch in the verse. In The Chosen Ones I also hear a bit of Styx, especially in the synth melodies. Without going in too much in detail, I can tell you this is a versatile, yet composed, great sounding melodic prog/symph/rock album which should appeal to fans of anything from The Flower Kings, to Styx, Kansas, Asia, Yes etc etc. Great stuff indeed!

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