Royal Hunt

Fear

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    3
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Royal Hunt's fifth studio release finds the band in a transitional phase. Vocalist D.C. Cooper left to pursue a solo career and was replaced by John West, formerly of Artension. A fine vocalist with a moderate range, his style lends itself more to neo-classical metal and power metal than progressive metal. Cooper not only had a unique style, but he also had a charisma that separated Royal Hunt from so many other average prog metal bands. Their approach on Fear hasn't changed much from Paradox, as this is really André Andersen's band, but the impact just isn't the same. Most of the selections follow traditional song structure and have more in common with Yngwie Malmsteen than Dream Theater. This is a rather short disc, tracking in at just under 50 minutes, but this is probably for the better as not much was happening anyway. This is a disappointing release that suffers immeasurably from D.C. Cooper's departure.

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