Album 0379: Stratovarius – Visions

Stratovarius-Visions

Release Date: 1997
Genre: Power Metal

Tracklisting:

1. The Kiss Of Judas (05:49)
2. Black Diamond (05:39)
3. Forever Free (06:00)
4. Before The Winter (06:07)
5. Legions (05:44)
6. The Abyss Of Your Eyes (05:39)
7. Holy Light (05:46)
8. Paradise (04:27)
9. Coming Home (05:37)
10. Visions (Southern Cross) (10:20)
11. Black Diamond (demo) (05:08)
12. Uncertainty (live) (06:14)

Total Length: 01:12:29

The Kiss Of Judas has an infuriating opening with a dirty bass and some annoying guitar sounds before we get into the first riff. It has some good moments but honestly is sluggish and not very much fun. It’s also way too lengthy. Black Diamond is at least faster, has a better chorus, and the hook is way more intriguing. Forever Free is a fairly nice track but again too long. That’s a very, very common complaint on here. The song should have stopped about a minute before it did.

Before The Winter is more of a ballad. It has that same complaint again, and despite liking some of it the majority is kind of boring. Legions is pretty simple, both in execution and my perception of it. I enjoy it, but once again too long. The Abyss Of Your Eyes could have again ended a minute earlier and it’s a decent track. Just forgettable. Holy Light is the token instrumental track, and at least that means they try and vary it up and it can deserve its length.

I also enjoy that it ends and transitions directly into Paradise, a song that at least doesn’t pull any punches at first and gets right into it. A pretty strong song combo. Coming Home is a fairly boring ballad, I can’t find too much to like about it. Visions (Southern Cross) is one of the band’s large songs. Contrary to almost everything else on here, it earns its length. It has a couple cheesy moments but is a really strong song with lots of good riffs.

The demo of Black Diamond obviously isn’t as polished but ends a bit shorter, about the point I would have wanted it to end the first time. The live version of Uncertainty is long and slow. I really, really don’t get it. This album had always seemed like kind of a shining icon before I listened to it, an album everyone loved and such. I don’t understand. Most of it is boring and even when it’s not I don’t think it’s enough to truly save it.

Final Rating: 6/10

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