Judicator - Let There Be Nothing (2020)

hudební novinky 2020 / music news 2020
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Judicator - Let There Be Nothing (2020)

Príspevokod užívateľa Horex » 22 Nov 2022, 11:36

Judicator - Let There Be Nothing (2020)

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Year : 2020
Style : Power Metal , Heavy Metal
Country : United States
Audio : 320 kbps + all scans
Size : 120 mb


Bio:

Judicator is a US Power Metal band formed by Tony Cordisco and John Yelland in 2012 after the two met at a Blind Guardian concert. Sharing a love of Blind Guardian and old school power metal, the two recorded a quick cover of Helloween’s classic song ‘Ride the Sky’ for fun one day, and quickly realized doing a full on album of original material in that vein would be a great homage to their heroes and fun for any of their friends to listen to. The debut album “King of Rome” was then crafted over the course of a few weeks in 2012, utilizing home recording and drum machines, as Judicator did not have any plans to be a ‘real band’ as it were, and simply just wanted to put the album up on bandcamp for whoever might find it enjoyable to listen to. Subsequently, the album was released on October 30th, 2012, showcasing Tony and John’s shared love of old school power metal and Blind Guardian vocal stylings. The album’s concept followed the final days of Napoleon Bonaparte’s last campaign, leading up to his eventual defeat at the Battle of Waterloo.After a number of affirming underground reviews and unexpected, humbling fan and friend reactions, John and Tony decided the band would be more than just a one album ‘fire and forget’ recording project set on paying homage to their favorite bands, and quickly began working on the follow up “Sleepy Plessow” — this time focusing on developing more of their own heavy/power metal sound and incorporating a wider range of their influences, and also putting a little more into the production side of things without going outside the means of what they had available to them. The album was released less than 7 months later in June of 2013. The sophomore effort showed a departure from the speed and riff obsessed nature of ‘King of Rome” and focused more heavily on atmosphere, melody, slower tempos, more complex vocal arrangements, and bigger overall narrative concept. The album also brought in numerous guest vocalist from friends and underground bands alike in order to portray the various characters and soundscapes needed for the album. The story of Frederick the Great of Prussia showed the band progressing into a more mature and developed territory as a band, but Judicator still remained a homemade recording project with only Tony and John at the helm.Feeling that ‘Sleepy Plessow’ had demonstrated the improvement they wanted over the first album, and feeling encouraged by the exponential increase of listener and reviewer engagement, John and Tony decided it was time to begin work on a third, and change the nature of the band to reflect a more a traditional setup and help progress the band’s material to a more professional level. The band added drummer Jordan Elcess in late 2013–whom Tony had worked with previously in Sedulity, Vermiform, Grimaced, and other bands–and began work on the third album ‘At the Expense of Humanity’. This album took the band to new heights and finally saw Judicator transition from a homemade recording project into an actual band–leaving behind the days of home laptop recording, and quickly released albums. The band played their first two live appearances at the Deland Rock and Metal Festival in Fall 2014 leading up to the release of ‘At the Expense of Humanity’ in March of 2015. The album showed an even further expansion of the band’s sound, both musically and production wise. The album pushed the band in a more progressive and personal direction, as the concept revolved around John’s retelling of the story of how he lost his brother to cancer when he was 18 years old. The album’s tragic and personal concept was illustrated by a more diverse and progressive approach to power metal. The band was able to partner with Dirty Viking Audio (Shadowdance, Noble Beast, Helion Prime, etc) and Tower Studios (Ayreon, Noble Beast, etc) to have their first truly professionally produced album, and with the help of fan support, was able to crowd fund the production for the album. Additionally, ‘At the Expense of Humanity’ saw the band partner with Divebomb Records, which Tony had previously worked with in Project: Roenwolfe, for a widespread release of the album and beyond. The album was met with enthusiastic underground/online critical praise, noting the professional and mature change of direction for the band, and that Judicator had finally come into their own. The band was able to also embark on their first small regional tours throughout the Southwest and West Coast of the United States in Spring 2015 and Summer 2016 in support of ‘At the Expense of Humanity’.Currently, the band is hard at work promoting the release of their fourth album, “The Last Emperor”. The album shows a full swing return to their germanic influenced power metal and features a re-recording of the title track of the debut album “King of Rome” with an accompanying music video.“The Last Emperor” is a historical power metal concept album covering several events and figures from the first Crusades and the People’s crusades, including Pope Urban II, Godfrey of Bouillon, Alexios I Komnenos, Raynald Porchet, and Bohemond I of Antioch. The album was recorded in 2017 and reamped, edited, and mixed by Carlos Alvarez of Dirty Viking Audio. The album was once again mastered by Brett Caldas-Lima of Tower Studio. Hansi Kürsch of Blind Guardian appears for additional lead and backing vocals on the song ‘Spiritual Treason’. David Brown of Chaos Frame returns once again for support with choir and backing vocals, as well as featuring on guest lead vocals on “Antioch”, playing the part of the martyred knight Raynald Porchet.

Album:

Belisarius was a Byzantine General whose exploits in battle and the drama of his personal life cemented him as one of the most interesting and underknown figures of antiquity. He was an imperfect man, but certainly seemed destined for greatness. Ironic that the same can be said of Arizona power metal quintet JUDICATOR. After listening to their newest record, Let There Be Nothing, the band’s fifth which is a concept record that captures the life story of the aforementioned Belisarius, it’s abundantly clear that if the band can work to tighten up aspects of their sound and lyricism, they can easily go on to be the next juggernauts of the power metal world.Right from the first track, Let There Be Light, the standout across the board is vocalist John Yelland. His voice is extremely clear, piercing, and powerful. The vocal harmony and melody work he and the band put into this record is excellent and his range is something that puts him in the upper echelon of power metal vocalists. The flip side of this coin is the lyrical delivery and cadence of a great deal of the record. The lyrics take a very novelistic approach in the way they’re written, so the flow is often a bit choppy, and is definitely an aspect the band could improve. However, the opening track also demonstrates the musical talent of the other band members quite well. Guitarists Tony Cordisco and Balmore Lemus craft a nice galloping riff and emotive solo, and they consistently keep it up from song to song, but second coin flipside is the lack of instrumental power due to the mixing. The record tackles battles and warfare quite often, and more power in the mix could have gone a long way to creating an even more immersive atmosphere and the better sound they deserve.Tomorrow’s Sun has a great opening riff reminiscent of METALLICA’s No Remorse, and as the song goes on there are hints of Creeping Death in here as well. It certainly helps that the song takes on a thrash beat courtesy of drummer Ulises Hernandez, who also puts in nice work on this record. Even the solos on this track are very classic thrash and sound great, but the gang vocals in this song come off as a bit weak. More power is needed to really capture the energy and urgency the song is reflecting.On Strange to the World, Yelland’s voice again takes centre stage at first, but it’s the guitar work about a third of the way in with a great staccato riff that ramps up the energy. There’s some monster high notes from Yelland before another great riff halfway through. But again, the lyrical cadence and flow come off a bit shaky here. The bones and muscle are there, but they need to be refined a bit more. But melodically, there’s no issues here. The melodies are triumphant and uplifting and the vocals and riffs at the end of this track brings it home with a fist pumping attack. Autumn of Souls, keeps this up this bombardment with a blitzing opening of guitars, but brings back the gang vocals that just don’t bring what’s needed to the table. There’s a great galloping riff and more great harmonies, including a nice chorus with a solid hook, but power, power, power is what’s needed. If the band could have really added more punch to the mix and to their gang vocals, this track would have been a standout.That being said, Gloria, is a superb song. Lingering lyrical flow issues aside, this track has some incredible melodic construction and a truly magnificent power metal chorus. Yelland is firing on all cylinders, and the way the band is right in the pocket with him and matches him so airtight on the chorus is goosebump inducing. Some more heft in this track and it would be monstrously good. It’s a track that truly demonstrates what this band is capable of crafting, and it stands among any of the best and most catchy power metal tracks of the last decade.Moving on to Amber Dusk, the crisp acoustic picked opening blends nicely with the vocals before moving to a slow, dirge-like crunch, and this is a track that shows the range and talent of each member of the band nicely. The guitars follow Yelland’s melody perfectly, and the transition to the acoustic chorus sounds great and adds some new textures into the mix. Also worth noting is the guitar tone on this record. Despite the mix issues, it has a Jake E. Lee-era OZZY OSBOURNE quality to it that adds a vintage quality to the songs and enhances the attack and punch on each track. Three and a half minutes in there’s some great vocal work before a blistering solo that really captures that sense of urgency and pace of a battlefield, and as the song closes, the tempo drops to show the coming of night, ending the track quite nicely.The Way of a Pilgrim, unfortunately is the one track that doesn’t stand out as much. There’s some more great riff work and attack in the song’s opening which brings high drama early on, but the lack of power and memorable melodic passages make this the weakest track on the record. But once again, the band strikes back with as hot an iron as can be forged with Let There Be Nothing. The emotional labour and passion felt in every minute of this track is palpable, it’s perhaps the best track of the whole record. The vocal power and melodies from Yelland during the chorus are stirring, and his voice roars like an earthquake at the chorus’ finish. The guitar chugs like the marching of a weary army and the song just raises the bar and the stakes completely for JUDICATOR. It’s an absolutely awesome showing from them and is representative of the band at their full powers. Even the lyrical flow comes together completely, making this one of the most lyrically memorable and singable songs. The riffing will get heads banging and raise the blood of any audience lucky enough to hear it live. Enough can’t be said about it. The solos work perfectly, the harmonies are phenomenal and the dynamics of Yelland’s softness before the crashing thunder of the chorus almost bring a tear to the eye. This song is destined to be felt deep in the bones of any metalhead.JUDICATOR have some work to do. When a band emerges like this on their fifth record, the pieces start to fit together and a clear picture of the future starts to emerge. With every component of a massive path set before them, the steps to reach the next level are these: amp up the mixing power, simplify the lyrical process, and work on flow and cadence. That’s it. If they can do that, the sky is the limit for this band. It is absolutely a possibility this group can not only tour with the likes of SABATON, but reach the same heights. That is the impression they make with Let There Be Nothing. Destiny isn’t quite in their hands yet, but by God it’s theirs for the taking if they want it. What happens next will be exciting to watch.

Line-Up:

John Yelland - Vocals (2012-present) - See also: Dire Peril, Principium, Disforia, ex-Shadowseer
Tony Cordisco - Bass, Drum programming (2012-2013), Guitars (2012-present), Vocals (2013-present) - See also: Project: Roenwolfe, ex-Apophenia, ex-Atresia, ex-Grimaced, ex-Sedulity, ex-Tony C, ex-Xoteric, ex-Bubonic Wrath, ex-Vermiform, ex-The Penetrators
Jordan Elcess - Drums (2014-present) - See also: ex-Apophenia, ex-Atresia, ex-Grimaced, ex-Sedulity, ex-Vermiform, ex-Ethereal
Michael Sanchez - Bass, Guitars (lead) (2016-present) - See also: Pain Patterns

+ Guests:

Austin Bentley - Vocals (track 6)
Balmore Lemus - Guitar solos (track 4, 8)
Mercedes Victoria - Vocals (track 5)
Chris Carland - Keyboards, Orchestration (track 3)
Christian M?nzner - Guitar solo (track 6)
Chad Bill Anderson - Guitars (lead) (additional) (track 6)

Tracklist:

01. Let There Be Light
02. Tomorrow’s Sun
03. Strange to the World
04. Autumn of Souls
05. Gloria
06. Amber Dusk
07. The Way of a Pilgrim
08. Let There Be Nothing

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