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Royal Hunt - Moving Target CD (album) cover


Royal Hunt


Progressive Metal

3.95 | 95 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars |B| One of prog metal's most underrated albums.

Moving Target was my introduction to the music of Royal Hunt, one of the better yet somewhat unknown bands of prog metal. This was another album my brother bought when he was way into power metal, and at first I dismissed this album as just another cliche power metal album, but every time I came back listening to it I liked it a little more and noticed more of the classical nuances. Now it's at the point where this is really one of my favorite albums from this sort of prog, which is similar to other neoclassical/power/prog metal bands Kamelot and Symphony X. Many of the arrangements found in this album are quite breathtaking, to say the least, and overall they create an incredibly solid album, definitely among the band's best.

Each track on the album is pretty consistent in song structure, probably the least progressive quality of the album. Even though the songs aren't the eight to twelve minute lengths I'm used to with much prog metal, each track is packed with musicality and intelligent, cohesive composition. Probably the most prominent instruments driving the band's material throughout the album are the IMMENSE keyboard work by Anderson (I would have sworn there were two keyboardists in the band putting this stuff together, but it's all just him!) and D.C. Cooper's brilliant vocals that really makes the band sore in terms of emotional heights. The guitar style definitely hints at early power metal styles that were especially pioneered by bands such as Scorpions and Savatage, only further developed to have a very epic and polished sound, all the while avoiding the annoying repetitious cliches that infect most otherwise decent power metal bands such as Stratovarious. Probably the best thing about the songs here is the shear amount of atmospheric nuances and attention to detail to the point of achieving perfection in the production without sacrificing the passionate, emotional aspect of the music, something that rarely happens in the production of even most competent albums. The use of reverb, of acoustic guitar and the female chorus, everything just seems to fall perfectly in place. My favorite tracks are 1348, Far Away, and Step by Step. Step by Step is really one of the most unique prog metal songs I've ever heard, combining early swing style jazz writing with metal, which is definitely something that should be tapped into more often.

Overall a very fine album that every prog metal head should have in their collection, and that most proggers overall should at least check out. If you're a fan of the combination of classical and metal music, and especially if you're already into any of the other bands I've mentioned in this review, this is an album you MUST hear. Four big stars for this sweet one!

Isa | 4/5 |


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