Reviews of "Nostradamus"

(Steamhammer/ SPV)

Rock Opera's, don't you just love em! We've recently had the like so the Ayreon concepts, and the best so far the Avantasia project, and now we certainly have the most epic and anticipated of the lot. Years in the making (the orchestra started recording in 1998!) this is the story of the famous French prophet Nostrodamus. Featuring a four piece band, seven vocalists a thirty five piece orchestra and over 100 minutes of music where do you start! Kotzev was the guitar brains behind the three Brazen Abbot albums and has brought several of the guest singers over with him. I might add you will definitely require the assistance of the lavish booklet for untangling the complicated story and lyrics and finding who's singing where. It really is an extremely inventive and creative piece and musically it cannot be faulted. All of the vocalists get into their parts and the commitment of performance is obvious. With the quality of Glenn Hughes/Goran Edman/Jorn Lande/Joe Lynn Turner/Doogie White/Alannah Myles and Sass Jordan what would you expect? The band apart from Kotzev (g & violin) is the Europe/Clockwise backline of Ian Haughland (d), John Leven (b) and Mic Micheli (organ). JLT plays Nostrodamus and I haven't heard him sing this well in years. The duet 'Try to Live Again' with Myles is awesome as is 'Henriette', which starts off like Bryan Adams and features Kotzev on superb violin. The rock songs are very much in the Purple/Rainbow vein and special mention here goes to Glenn Hughes (Henry II). On the melodic opener 'Pieces of a Dream', 'I Don't Believe' (with Lande) and the hard blues of 'Caught Up In a Rush' the guy reigns supreme. The best songs are on CD 1, but check out the mighty 'Chosen Man' on CD 2 which features a duet between JLT and Glenn Hughes, breathtaking stuff. An amazing release no doubt, the only problem (for me anyway) is how many times would you play it all the way through? Rumour has it that Disney wants to do a film of the story (what a soundtrack!!!)

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