Demise of the Crown - Demise of the CrownAfter a conversation with a friend about power metal, I came to the realization that many of my favorite bands in the genre are cheesy as hell. I’ve come to this slightly ashamed conclusion many times over the years, and as I’ve done before, I pulled out my power metal collection in hopes that all the black, thrash, and death metal hadn’t lessened my love for Tolkien-based nonsense and eight-album concepts about the mighty Metalians. My fears were quickly subdued as I fell into a month-long rut listening to the likes of Helloween, Blind Guardian, Metalium, Demons and Wizards, Iced Earth, and Dream Evil. Still ashamed, but not giving a flying fuck, I scanned the promo bin for more cheese to satisfy my craving. And, behold, I found Demise of the Crown.

Listing references like Avantasia, Pink Floyd, Van Halen, and… Godsmack, one thing can be said of this Canadian five-piece: they’re an odd bunch. Caring little for what people think and caring a lot about playing their brand of rocking, ballady power metal, they grab a discarded potato sack and fill it with hooks, melodies, and chunky riffs. The bag is then shaken vigorously and its contents spilled out in the middle of a wooded prairie; the newly shaped object being a fist-pumping, by-the-numbers, self-titled debut. The result ain’t perfect, but I find myself returning to Demise of the Crown‘s lavish layers of cheesy goodness.

Loaded up and fired up, “We Are Invincible” gets Demise of the Crown rolling with some rocking guitar licks that give-way to some choo-choo chugging. With Ripper Owens-esque prowess, the verses have an air of melody and the subtle harshness in Darren Beadman’s voice make for a perfect setup to the eye-closing, toe-tapping chorus. Unashamedly, this song ends up on repeat quite often. It doesn’t break new ground, but it is some well-balanced power metal. “Don’t Worry” attacks in a similar way, but with a more ballady angle. The melodic guitar solos, the heart-wrenching vocals, and the cloud-parting nature of the chorus are just too much for me to ignore. Along with the acoustic guitars and the zippo-waving “Hotel California”-like closer, “We Are Invincible” and “Don’t Worry” stand as the highlights on the album.

Demise of the Crown 2016

While the opener and the final three tracks of the disc (“Don’t Worry,” “Cold Dead Eyes,” and “Eons”) do well to tap into the catchy, the heavy, and the ballady, the remaining tracks lack many of the elements that make the aforementioned songs great. “Human Denial” follows up “We Are Invincible” with a thrashy Symphony X riff, but the weak (and mostly annoying) chorus extinguishes is power. Also, is that a fucking cowbell I hear? Though Beadman’s vocals on “Save Me” are an interesting cross of Ripper and Ihsahn, and the mid-section Kamelot riffs and Blind Guardian-inspired solo work of “Sides of the Wave” are well executed, these tracks lack the punch found everywhere else on the album. However, the negative impact these songs have on the Demise of the Crown would be lessened if they weren’t all placed back-to-back-to-back on this thirty-minute, seven-track record.

Unfortunately, in combination with this trifecta of lower-tier songs, the production is also disappointingly compressed. The instruments are crystal clear and the mix is decent enough (minus the lack of bass presence), but Demise of the Crown is quite loud. This is most obvious during Beadman’s high-pitched delivery and during many of the squealing guitar solos. Beadman’s voice has good range, combining his Ripper-like foundation with “harsh,” shrieky vocals, but the latter doesn’t always work; especially his completely off-putting Dani Filth impression on “Save Me.” Nevertheless, Demise of the Crown is a good ole power-metal record that does a fine job of forcing hook, line, and sinker straight down your gullet.

Rating: 3.0/5.0
DR: 5 | Format Reviewed: 128 kbps mp3
Label: Unsigned
Websites: |
Releases Worldwide: March 4th, 2016

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  • Shangsean

    Are you sure that cover and the band photo are from the same album?

    • Carlos Marrickvillian

      Ha yeah looks like a mix up at the label!

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      Right?? I was super confused too. And judged that band photo thoroughly.

      • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

        That band photo inmediately reminded me of Love/Hate. I wonder if anyone around here remembers that band.

        • Dr. A.N. Grier

          Dear god….

          • Stop.

          • Dr. A.N. Grier

            I knew the time would come!

        • Norfair Legend

          Love/Hate weren’t that bad for the time…I think

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            I’m not saying they were bad… I hardly ever listened to them. But the picture here inmediately made me think of them.

  • The Stormin Mormon

    Only the trvest metalheads see the light of Middle-Earthian cheesy power metal!

  • I bet AMG loves this singer!

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      It’s his favorite vocalist. He told me so.

  • William Hebblewhite

    They look like a really fucking god awful 80s cover band that find in a pub on Saturday night.

  • Bart the Repairman

    One good thing about Dream Theater’s ‘Astonishing’: after 5 or 7 painful spins (from A to Z, ha!), my tolerance for cheese expanded so much, that I finally feel ready for exploring POWER METAL.
    Seriously, that was really funny. Gimme moar!

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      You’ve been reborn!

      • Bart the Repairman

        Never too late.
        By the way – Pink Floyd & Ihsahn as references in review of power band? That’s interesting:)

        • Dr. A.N. Grier

          It is interesting. It’s an interesting album (hence, why I couldn’t bash on it). Lots going on even if it doesn’t all work.

  • Carlos Marrickvillian

    Logo gets a 1.5

    • Name’s Dalton

      Makes me wish for the return of the monarchy.

    • [not a Dr]

      that’s the most metal M I’ve ever seen…

  • Oscar Albretsen

    Canadian metal?

  • I basically disliked this record so much that I considered removing it from the promo pile.

    • Are you and this record beefin’?

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      Is it the whole Godsmack thing?

  • sir_c

    With a band photo like that you do not even have to listen to their music.

  • HMG


  • FutureBeyondSatan

    Too bad the first Demons & Wizards namedrop at AMG is linked to this. What a shame.