Gus G. – I Am The Fire (2014)

Gus G - I Am The Fire

“I’m going to be honest with you and say that this album is not the shred after shred heavy metal album that you might have expected. Hell, some of the songs on here aren’t even heavy metal at all. But I’m sure you’re also expecting that too. After all, solo albums in this vein usually contain a smorgasbord of different sounds and ideas; and this disc is no different. Oddly enough, former Therion and current Candlemass vocalist Mats Leven is featured on five of these tracks, where he doesn’t seem to be quite as spectacular as he used to be; yet there’s still signs that the man is fully capable of creating memorable power metal. The first two tracks on the disc are a great introduction to the album as “My Will Be Done” and “Blame It On Me” both feature memorable power metal performances with catchy vocals, memorable melodies and some nice solo bits. I don’t think they’re nearly as fiery as Firewind (no pun intended by the way) or as epic as Therion, but they make me feel that if Gus G. wanted to go ahead and write another six or seven tracks with Mats Leven on a solo album, I would definitely be apt to checking it out.

Though not all of the songs are as I said; roaring power metal jams. Devour The Day’s Blake Allison guests on title cut “I Am The Fire,” which is definitely in the vein of hard rock and would be rotating on modern rock stations worldwide in a matter of minutes. It’s a song that’s got money written all over it, but let’s face it – the thing’s a cancerously catchy earworm that people are going to really dig and won’t be able to get that chorus out of their head to save their lives. Trust me; it already got stuck in my head, so let’s move on. Two instrumental cuts are also featured on the album, and these are quite memorable as “Vengeance” features David Ellefson of Megadeth and “Terrified” features Billy Sheehan of David Lee Roth and Mr. Big, so you already know what to expect from these. I also need to mention that A Perfect Circle (still can’t get their songs out of my head since that AXS concert I watched earlier this week) and Puscifer drummer Jeff Friedl, as well as Arch Enemy skinsman Daniel Erlandsson make guest appearances on the disc along with Marty O’ Brien of Disturbed. It’s a veritable cavalcade of musicians…”

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