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Royal Hunt - Moving Target  CD (album) cover

MOVING TARGET

Royal Hunt

 

Progressive Metal

3.93 | 63 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Moving Target is the third full-length studio album by Danish symphonic heavy rock/ metal act Royal Hunt. While the two predecessors Land of Broken Hearts (1992) and The Clown In The Mirror (1993) both featured excellent musicianship and strong compositions they didn´t exactly have excellent professional productions. The sound was not bad but then again it wasn´t really good either. That element has been fixed on Moving Target and to my ears this album sounds more professional than both predecessors. There´s been a significant lineup change since the last album as lead vocalist Henrik Brockmann has left to be replaced by American vocalist D.C. Cooper. D.C. Cooper was one of the finalists when Judas Priest auditioned for replacements for Rob Halford. A spot that ended up being taken by Tim Ripper Owens.

The music is symphonic and very melodic heavy rock/ metal. There are a few progressive elements in the music but nothing overtly experimental or innovative. The opener Last Goodbye is probably the most progressive song on the album. The music is dominated by main composer/ keyboardist/ producer André Andersen´s neo-classical inspired keyboard playing but the songs are very song oriented and D.C. Cooper´s strong voice and skilled use of it is also a dominant part of the music. Allthough there are solos on the album and an instrumental track in Autograph don´t expect extented instrumental sections in the songs. This is basically simple vers/ chorus build music. There were lots of grand choirs on the two predecessors from Royal Hunt and on Moving Target we are again treated with grand backing choirs. This time they are not male though but instead Maria McTurk and Lise Hansen has been brought in to sing female backing vocals.

The musicianship is excellent. André Andersen is a true virtuoso on the keyboard. I´m thinking Jens Johansson ( Yngwie Malmsteen, Dio, Stratovarius) at times and that´s quite a praise in my world. The rest of the band are tight and well playing as well and I´d call D.C. Cooper´s inclusion an improvement as well even though I did enjoy Henrik Brockmann´s voice too.

The production is professional and powerful. Finally André Andersen made the right sound for the band.

While I´m not a big fan of this kind of symphonic heavy rock/ metal I can acknowledge when something is done right and professional. This is a good album in the symphonic heavy rock/ metal tradition and it fully deserves a BIG 3 star rating. For fans of the genre this might rank a bit higher though so take that into consideration when you read my review.

UMUR | 3/5 |

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