Time Warriors

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When a band is trying to recapture the sounds of the past, it's easy to fake a lot of things. With enough time and practice, anyone can peel off a searing guitar solo or learn to roll with odd time signatures, and it's something that revivalist rock bands generally get caught up doing. The one thing you can't fake, though, is the sense of drama, especially when it comes to prog rock and proto-metal. This is exactly the area where Swedish retro-rockers Horisont excel over most of their contemporaries, capturing that sense of the fantastic in a way that feels free of irony on their third album, Time Warriors. Filled with high-flying musical adventures, the band melds the experimentation of early metal with the intensity of the new wave of British heavy metal, creating a sound that seems to exist in two time periods at once as it blends the old with the older. With a sound that's so rooted in the past, a title like Time Warriors begins to make sense. Horisont are a band battling with the flow of time, going backwards in a genre that's all about pushing its sound into darker and more extreme territories. And while they're not the first band to attempt this, they certainly seem to be taking it seriously, never making a joke out of the galloping sound that helped to influence generations of metalheads in the U.K. and beyond. In a way, the band feel like Civil War reenactors, giving themselves totally to the past in order to make the experience more real for the people of the present, and it's that dedication that makes Time Warriors an album worth spending some time with.

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