Brace yourself! The boys from Omaha Nebraska are back for their fourth quest to ignite into your sound holes that will leave you on your knees grovelling for an encore! Cellador quickly became a favourite act of mine with their ’06 release of ‘Enter Deception’. Anyone that loves melodic power metal like Sonata Arctica, Iron Savior or even Power Quest should have no issue with fully engulfing themselves with Cellador’s music. They pump out serious speed, are heavy as hell, and multi layered perfectionists!
Chris Petersen returns manning vocals and guitars, Diego Valadez on keyboards, James Pickett with the bass, Eric Meyers on guitar, and Nick McCallister returns on drums. All too often we see one’s greatest fear when picking up a new album from a beloved act that has churned out classic after classic - what if this is a let-down album? What if it doesn’t live up to your own lofty expectations? Then, like this experience, you’re completely blown away!
Jumping through the track list- ‘Soul Survivor’ starts things off exactly like how I hoped it would, with breathless riffs dancing from progression to progression. ‘Break Heresy’ almost seamlessly continues this powerful skull crushing effort into ‘Shadowfold’! ‘Wake the Tyrant’ is so heavy it’s almost overwhelming; just near perfection on display here!
‘Off the Grid’ is our title track and comes off exceptionally well. This is probably the most straightforward and most polished track. Not to say there is anything at all wrong with the rest of the album, but this one has something universally enjoyable to it. This is an experience that cannot be fully enjoyed on your first listen or two. You will need multiple trips through ‘Off the Grid’ to fully grasp each rhythm, each powerful transition, and each and every solo. It may seem a bit overwhelming at first, but you will notice how each track falls into its own sound.
‘Swallow Your Pride’ has some similarities to a Dragonforce style, which if you can imagine has some complexity in guitars that even they would say is “too fast”. Each track seems to show off new heights for Petersen as his vocals are growing by leaps and bounds! ‘Shimmering Status’ is another excellent use of complicated riffs and excellent drum work out of McCallister. Keep an ear open for how impressive his work is.
We have a cover track that comes in our eighth spot on this release. It’s a great cover of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Good Enough’ from the awesome 80s movie ‘The Goonies’. I love that flick and found that listening to this track brings back awesome nostalgia from my childhood. Damn, Cellador can do no wrong, even when just having a good time and playing around with music!
‘This Means War’ is one of the most powerful works on this release. Which, after the tribute to Lauper, is a perfect way to head into the closing tracks of this glorious album. ‘Running Riot’ brings us to the end with an excellent final jam-packed and powerful showing for Cellador! This is fantastic. Cellador have given us something really special in 2017 and you cannot afford to miss it. Highly recommended!!
OFF THE GRID
Review by Joshua Jaeger
10th March 2017
1) Sole Survivors
2) Break Heresy
4) Wake Up the Tyrant
5) Off the Grid
6) Swallow Your Pride
7) Shimmering Status
8) Good Enough
9) This Means War
10) Running Riot
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
"Cellador have given us something really special in 2017 and you cannot afford to miss it. Highly recommended!!"