In times of restless reorientation and a permanent hectic search for ever more spectacular innovations, AXEL RUDI PELL has proved to be a constant, solid as a rock, a reliable preserver of his undisputed assets. Confident and courageous at the same time, he has embarked on a consistently traditional course with his band, relying more than ever on traditional values with his new album, The Crest. “The Crest sounds absolutely typical of me and my band. In a way, the new tracks mark a return to our roots. And I’m proud to say that there isn’t one double bass number on The Crest,” comments PELL. The guitarist and songwriter knows that this decision will not be considered archaic, but makes him one of the spearheads of a thoroughly contemporary development.
His 13th studio album is sure to impress with varied compositions at the interface of melodic metal and hard rock. The collaboration between PELL and his American vocalist, Johnny Gioeli, which was established some twelve years ago, has experienced yet another magic moment on The Crest. The American’s raw, charismatic voice is a perfect complement to the deeply melodic numbers by the AXEL RUDI PELL BAND, who in turn set the stage perfectly for their front man. “Naturally, I came up with the main features of the melody and lyrics, but I’d be ill advised if I didn’t listen to Johnny’s suggestions”, says PELL, “there’s real teamwork in our band.”
The Crest also features an innovation: for the first time, AXEL RUDI PELL has taken care of the production himself. Between November 2009 and January 2010, AXEL, bassist Volker Krawczak, keyboardist Ferdy Doernberg and drummer Mike Terrana recorded the nine tracks (as well as the intro) at the W.A.T. Studios in Bochum. PELL worked on the vocals in great detail with front man Gioeli via Skype. Gioeli recorded his parts in the United States, and the album was mixed, as usual by Charlie Bauerfeind at the Mi Sueno Studios in Tenerife and at the Twilight Hall Studios in Grefrath, Germany, the hallowed halls of their colleagues, Blind Guardian.
In view of the album’s compositional density, it wouldn’t seem fair to highlight individual tracks. At the same time, it must be mentioned that AXEL RUDI PELL has come up with a continuation of his classic, ´Oceans Of Time`, in the eight-minute ´Dark Waves Of The Sea` (including unmistakable quotes from the original), and the album features an impressive instrumental piece in ´Noblesse Oblige (Opus # 5 Adagio Contabile)`. And of course, there’s another great PELL ballad on the album, entitled ´Glory Night`.
So as usual, the band have done their homework brilliantly, and soon after the release of The Crest, the AXEL RUDI PELL BAND will showcase their latest release as part of their 2010 tour: the first leg will kick off in May, followed by a number of big festival appearances during the summer, before the second leg is set to start in autumn. Following the enthusiastic reactions to their shows with Heaven and Hell in the summer 2009, PELL is open to suggestions regarding another co-headlining tour with a renowned act. “We had a lot of fun with Heaven and Hell, so I’d definitely consider a similar concept.”
Prelude of Doom (Intro)
Prisoner of Love
Dark Waves of the Sea (Oceans of Time Pt. II: The Dark Side)
Noblesse Oblige (Opus #5 Adagio Contabile)
The End of Our Time
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