Serious Black – Suite 226

Album Review By Rainer Kerber

Serious Black were founded by Roland Grapow and Mario Lorchert in 2015. Since then, at least one album has been released each year. Until 2017. Since then the band has calmed down. Originally six, Serious Black have now shrunk to a quartet. And of this only drummer Ramy Ali is not there from the start. So despite two disposals a remarkable constancy. The fourth studio album “Suite 226” will be released at the end of January if you don’t include the acoustic album “First Light” (2017). As on “Magic” (2017), a story is told here. The story of a confused man torn between his dream world, reality and evil. Serious Black will also be on tour with this album staring at the end of January.

A fast metal song opens the album. “Let Me Go” could be sorted into the category Speed Metal anthem with thrash elements. This song offers enough opportunity to introduce the versatility of the singer’s voice. “When The Stars Are Right” sounds no less heavy, but no longer thrashy. This is followed by the neckbreaker “Solitude Étude” and the catchy power metal anthems “Fate Of All Humanity” and “Castiel”. But “Way Back Home” is a bit more mainstream with a great sing-along chorus. Live it is definitely a blast. “We Still Stand Tall” starts with synth sounds and evokes memories of Hammerfall or (early) Battle Beast with its pop attitude. The obligatory power ballad comes almost at the end of the album. At “Come Home” you should either stretch your lighter or your cell phone light towards the sky. Serious Black put the title song “Suite 226” right at the end. And the longest song with more than eight minutes playing time starts with oriental sounding folk elements. These can also be heard from time to time later. But don’t worry, even with this hymn the musicians start rocking forward. Some melody and rhythm changes give it a slightly progressive character. After a quiet middle section, speed is picked up again at the end.

Despite the somewhat unusual concept, “Suite 226” has a high hit density. Only the title song is somewhat out of the ordinary due to the progressive song structures. With this album Serious Black substantiate their claim to a place in the first league of German Power Metal acts.

Picture: Melissa Armstrong

Serious Black – When The Stars Are Right:


Urban Breed – Vocals
Dominik Sebastian – Guitar
Mario Lochert – Bass
Ramy Ali – Drums

Label: AFM Records

Out: January 31st, 2020

Playing time: 46:48

Track list:

  • Let Me Go
  • When The Stars Are Right
  • Solitude Étude
  • Fate Of All Humanity
  • Castiel
  • Heaven Shall Burn
  • Way Back Home
  • We Still Stand Tall
  • Come Home
  • Suite 226

Rating : 8/10

MHF Magazine/Rainer Kerber


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