Stay away from this if you are allergic to sugar sweet choruses, high pitched vocals and an overall singalong attitude. If you on the other hand are familiar with Freedom Call since before and happen to like them, you will be satisfied with their sixth studio album Legend Of The Shadowking, which is a concept album about Ludwig II, King of Bavaria, but perhaps not overly enthusiastic.
The production and general songwriting style is, not surprisingly, close to being exactly the same as it always have been, so there is not much else to say about that. The Freedom Call trademark is plenty of grand, bombastic choruses and joyful keyboards, and we get the whole package here as usual. A new Freedom Call album is really about how well they have succeded with the refrains and the general catchiness. The production is a tiny bit weaker than before so it does not feel as potent as earlier, but that is just a small side note and does not really affect anything.
The album opens very strong with a full house, to speak poker terms. Five very strong tracks of which three of them (Thunder God, Merlin - Legend Of The Past, Resurrection Day) rise slightly above the others. A good tempo and very catchy songs with a slight darker tone over the whole thing, but still with the melodies intact.
The album is not entirely full speed ahead. There is a block in the midsection (Under The Spell Of The Moon, Dark Obsession, The Darkness) where there is a much darker tone and they take the tempo down a notch. All of these mentioned songs with the exception of Dark Obsession is good, but perhaps the idea of putting these after each other was not so good since the momentum of the album dies here.
Considering the fact that the album contains 14 songs, there are surprisingly few fillers. There are a couple of standard songs that are a bit below Freedom Call's average level, such as Dark Obsession and Merlin - Requiem, but for the most of it the quality is high and songs like Thunder God and Remember! are just ace. Unfortunatly the album ends with two mediocre tracks in form of Kingdom Of Madness and A Perfect Day, where the first is somewhat of a standard rocker that does not really lead anywhere, and the latter is just silly and sounds like born from a rehearsal jam.
This album stands fairly good on its own, but is quite far from album highlights in their career such as The Circle Of Life (2005) and Eternity (2002). Overall a little bit of an uneven effort where the highs and lows are a bit too far from each other, and the highs are too concentrated to the first part of the album, but yet again a solid delivery from the creators and spearheads of modern Happy Metal, and it somehow feels like they have found some new energy after the questionable album Dimensions. They will be just as interesting to follow in the future as they have been so far.