KROSSFIRE - Learning to Fly CD
Pure Steel Records
Genre: Power Metal
KROSSFIRE originally put this out themselves in the Spring of 2011 but the good people at Pure Steel Records decided to pick it up, repackage the thing with new artwork and have it planned for a January 2012 re-release. Perfect time since there's a few references of trudging through ice and snow on Learning to Fly. Although it's late December where I'm holed up at and it's a balmy sixty nine degrees. Wahfuckinhoo if you ask me. Anyway KROSSFIRE could be considered Bulgaria's version of BLIND GUARDIAN and I mean that in the most sincere way. That latter band put the orchestral power in Power Metal and this band follows suit. After an obligatory intro, "Visions", the band comes out swinging their perniks (that's a medieval sword from their homeland) on "War Machine" which I wouldn't be surprised was conceived while a band member or two were in the audience the last time MANOWAR played in Bulgaria. (they tour through there often) Waitaminute maybe KROSSFIRE opened up for them?
Although the band has been around for a decade now this is their debut full length. As far as this release goes it's obvious that this five piece act clearly paid strict attention to detail. The melodies soar, their vocalist Dimo Petkov has that all perfect strong clean voice that's not operatic. Their guitarist Georgi Kushev floats in a MAIDEN riff or two but most often it's power chord heaven. Like most modern European Power Metal this is not as rough sounding or NWOBHM based. The orchestral intros and keyboard interludes add that progressive feel to the mix. Strangest thing about this is that they placed a ballad at the end of this instead of somewhere in the middle. The song, "The One" is a piano and string arranged duet between Petkov and a woman named Violeta Kousheva. Sure nice song but in the wrong place. The woman's probably a friend of the family who didn't make it on Bulgarian Idol so the band gave here a vocal shot on here for a few minutes. Learning to Fly has nothing really going for it which will excel it past any of their genre peers. At least the next time you're vacationing at the resort on the Black Sea you know who to see in town if you want some power metal.