Review: Magnus Karlsson’s Free Fall – Kingdom Of Rock – Frontiers Records – Release: Out Now.
Magnus Karlsson is well known as the mastermind behind several Frontiers Music productions, including the successful initial Allen/Lande trilogy, Starbreaker, Bob Catley, Kiske/Sommerville and many more. In 2008, he joined the German Heavy Metal icons Primal Fear and with them has toured the world and recorded two successful albums. In 2013 he released his first solo album and it blew the mind of many melodic rock fanatics. Now he strikes back with his second effort!
Magnus Karlsson’s Freefall is:
Magnus Karlsson – Guitars, Bass, Keyboards, Vocals
Jaime Salazar – Drums
Guest singers: Jorn Lande, Jacob Samuel, Joe Lynn Turner, Tony Martin, David Readman, Tony Harnell, Rick Altzi, Rebecca De La Motte, Harry Hess
Kingdom Of Rock
The first album “Free Fall” was an instant like for me and the title track of this new album sounds very promising as well! Some mild orchestration warms up the sound before the signature sound of Magnus’ guitar falls in. When maestro Jorn Lande comes in the picture a golden combination is formed. You can never get tired of hearing his strong, warm vocals! The track is an ode to metal and the fans in general! The genre has been mocked for ages in the media, but has proven that it will never die!
‘Out Of The Dark’ blows out of your speakers! Jacob Samuel (The Poodles) delivers an awesome vocal performance. His slightly raw voice fits like a metal studded glove around these powerriffs.
On the more melodic ‘No Control’ Joe Lynn Turner handles the microphone. The man swims like a fish in clear familiar water here! Magnus knows how to write catchy tunes, but above all he knows like no other to pick the ultimate singer for the tracks!
This becomes more than clear on the following ‘When The Sky Falls’. It’s a gift from heaven to hear Tony Martin doing his thing here! The man hasn’t lost his touch. What a huge amount of power he produces! It feels like the six minutes are gone in the blink of an eye!
Of course main man Magnus grants us superfast almost shredding guitar solos! Just lend your ears to his magic during ‘Angel Of The Night’. The tight drumming of Jaime Salazar also draws your attention here!
Besides playing almost all the instruments on this album, Magnus also sings on two tracks. The blond guy has a warm voice which goes very well with the more commercial sound of ‘I Am Coming For You’. The production is done by the talented Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Primal Fear, Pretty Maids) and as usual his production sounds great. It has a powerful and full sound.
Three singers were also present on the previous album from Magnus. So you know what to expect from David Readman, Rick Altzi and Tony Harnell.
‘A Heart So Cold’ is a full throttle rocker and the album closer ‘Walk This Road Alone’ lets us enjoy some heavy guitars blended with light orchestration.
But Rebecca De La Motte is the shining star in the ballad ‘The Right Moment’ with some piano and keys as an appetizer!
If you’re familiar with the signature powerful sound of Magnus’ guitar playing then this is going to be a treat again. Those who had the first album can buy this one blindfolded. To the others: if you like strong guitars, catchy tunes and an awesome list of guest singers this will be the album for you. The debut made it to my top-10 list of the year 2013. This one is also excellent, but the debut had that element of surprise in its favor!
Score: 4,25 out of 5
1. Kingdom Of Rock
2. Out Of The Dark
3. No Control
4. When The Sky Falls
5. Angel Of The Light
6. I Am Coming For You
7. Another Life
8. Never Look Away
9. A Heart So Cold
10. The Right Moment
11. Walk This Road Alone
Text by: Rik Bauters