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Tags: "IMPERA"

26 Jan 2015 

IMPERA - Empire Of Sin (2015)

IMPERA - Empire Of Sin (2015) full

Whenever I see the name Matt Alfonzetti on anything, I know one thing: that what I am about to listen to will be of the highest quality, and "Empire Of Sin", the third album from IMPERA is certainly no different. 
Throw into the mix the legendary Tommy Denander (Toto, Paul Stanley and Michael Jackson to name but a few) on guitar and you have the perfect collaboration that comes together, and releases one hell of a great album.

Impera's 2nd album was a bit dubious in the songwriting department, but on "Empire Of Sin" the guys polished the thing to the extreme: only 10 tracks but consistent as granite.
Along with the explosive and spectacular, jaw-dropping lead axeworks by Mr. Denander (“Don’t Stop”, ”Lost Boy”), the other thrilling and most obvious parameter in the Impera’s musical triumph is the superb vocal performance by Matti Alfonzetti, a very energetic actor in the Swedish Metal Scene since the mid '80s in countless bands like Bam Bam Boys, Talisman, Skintrade, Jagged Edge, etc.
And the rhythm section is great as well: mastermind Johan Kihlberg aka J.K. Impera on blast the drums, while the deep bass parts are played by Mats Vassfjord (Laney's Legion, Grand Design).

IMPERA - Empire Of Sin (2015) inside

Except for the track “Darling” which is a calmer bluesy rocker, this new opus is set in an 'angrier' mood, it offers a furious slab of heavy riffage (“Fly Away”) with a darkest feel (the slight epic and TENish “End Of The World”), an unusual density in the thematic (“Hole In The Sky”) and a more metallic edge in perfect concordance with this new found songwriting method.
Yes, Impera's new composing approach is more direct and impactful.

The brilliant “Never Enough” (a highlight) is the more AORish song on the record, a mid-tempo driven by a groovy riff quite similar to Van Halen, but with the stunning “Thunder in Your Heart”, the heaviness takes once again its prominency. “Thunder in Your Heart” is co-written with John Levén - founder member and bass player in Europe - who also contributes with a solo, but on the electric guitar!
“Light In The Sky" is an anthemic cut, a manifesto to the power of wilderness with many Whitesnake overtones, and another subtle and emotionnal solo spot for Denander.

Clearly, "Empire Of Sin" it's Impera's best album, and if you love your Swedish Hard Rock hot and tasty enhanced with a Melodic focus, this is for you.
The sound design created by band leader / drummer Johan Kihlberg, and mixed by Lars Chriss (Road II Ruin, Lion's Share) is also powerful and in harmony with this new Impera's approach: sharp, rocking and in concordance with the strong temper of headbanging songs such as opener “The Beast Is Dead” or “Evil”.

IMPERA - Empire Of Sin (2015) back

Impera have matured and honed their sound to rock you hard, and "Empire Of Sin" is their best album without a doubt. The band just signed with this third CD their own, signature style & sound.
Musically, 2015 starts pretty fast with an incredible bunch of sublime releases, and this is another one to add to the Top list.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED


01. The Beast Is Dead
02. Evil
03. Don't Stop
04. Hole In The Sky
05. End Of The World
06. Thunder In Your Heart
07. Lights In The Sky
08. Darling
09. Lost Boy
10. Fly Away

Matti Alfonzetti - Vocals
Tommy Denander - Guitar
J.K. Impera (Graham Bonnet, Vinnie Vincent Band) - Drums
Mats Vassfjord (Grand Design, Laney's Legion) - Bass
Special guest:
John Leven - lead guitar on 6
.
Admin · 410 views · 0 comments
20 Oct 2013 

IMPERA - Pieces Of Eden (2013)

IMPERA - Pieces Of Eden (2013) full 

Following the successful last year debut, Swedish supergroup IMPERA are releasing today their sophomore studio album, "Pieces Of Eden" via Escape Music. 
Founded by drummer Johan "Impera" Kihlberg (Graham Bonnet, Vinnie Vincent), the project again features the talents of vocalist Matti Alfonzetti (Jagged Edge, Skintrade, Red White &amp; Blues), bassist Mats Vassfjord (John Corabi, Grand Design) and terrific guitarist Tommy Denander (pick a melodic rock act from the last decade and there's a fair chance he's been involved with it).

As on Impera's debut, "Pieces Of Eden" is a keen blend of Melodic Hard Rock values and the bluesy croon of Alfonzetti, making for a sound reminiscent of Jagged Edge with a harder hitting push &amp; shove added to the mix. 
This is a ten-track slab that combines effortless melody with rockin' grooves, where the sound is polished, the vocals soulful, the sort of bombastic stuff that should, by right, fill arenas. Indeed a timeless type of music that harkens back to the halcyon days of the late '80s when this style was on everyone’s lips and quite literally in everyone’s hair too, but this is not a cheesy time machine in search of hazy memory.

The CD starts out with a bang and one of the highlights, the kickin' "Beast Within", and following suit into "These Chains", the modern day Europe-like "All Alone" and the bluesy "Smalltown Blues". The extremely sweet, slower "Since You’ve Been Gone" (not a Rainbow cover) sits in the middle of the album, breaking up the pace a bit with taste.
Later we found "You And I" driven by a moving riff, a good hard rocking midtempo in "This Is War" and the groovy closer "Fire And The Flame" which is a slow burner that ascends with a darker guitar riff and hard hitting drum backbone, having a Tony Martin-esque feel to it. 
All are good songs build around a tight musicianship and hearty vocals, but I have a problem with this material: the catchy factor is missing...
That's why I have reserved for the end the best tracks on the album: one is the stellar cover of Paul Stanley’s "‘Goodbye" (originally featured on the Kiss man’s 1978 self-titled solo album). It has a lovable bubblegum edge to its sprightly guitar sound, courtesy of a guest contribution from Lars Chriss (Lion’s Share), with solos from Bob Kulick, who also played on the original version.
The other is "Easy Come", where finally the catchiness appears in a full Melodic Rock form and lead into the ears with those amazing guitars by Denander and Alfonzetti’s strong melodious delivery.

As you can see, Impera's "Pieces Of Eden" is faultless on all the technical, know-how aspects, offering excellent musicianship, inspired performances and very good production.
However, even with all these factors locked in place, where this record fails to live up to its predecessor is in the songwriting department. Not by much mind, but enough to make the first few spins a bit of an anticlimactic journey, while still being an entertaining excursion.
Don't get me wrong, this is a fine effort, a good, if unspectacular second outing from Impera that should appeal to a wide audience. It just didn't blow me away as expected. 
Anyway, it's much better than many other super-group projects appeared recently, and that is saying something.


01. Beast Within
02. These Chains
03. All Alone
04. Smalltown Blues
05. Since You've Been Gone
06. Goodbye
07. Easy Come
08. You And I
09. This Is War
10. Fire And The Flame

Matti Alfonzetti – vocals
Tommy Denander – guitars
Mats Vassfjord - bass
J.K. Impera – drums
Lars Chriss – guitar, production
Bob Kulick – guest guitar
.
Admin · 273 views · 0 comments
16 Oct 2012 

IMPERA - Legacy Of Life (2012)

IMPERA - Legacy Of Life (2012) mp3 download mediafire

IMPERA was founded by drummer JK Impera (Vinnie Vincent) who has called some impressive stars to fulfill the remaining slots in the band.
No others than the great Matti Alfonzetti on vocals, the mighty Tommy Denander on guitars &amp; keys and bass player Mats Vassfjord (Vinnie Vincent, John Corabi, Grand Design).
The debut CD “Legacy Of Life” will be released next week in Europe.

Impera offers the listener a double whammy of classic hard rock ridden filled hooks with all musicians lending a straight and narrow performance, in a style that bring shades of Joe Lynn Turner solo records but with added punch lines, edgier guitar tones and pounding rhythms.
“Legacy Of Life” kicks things into high gear with “Turn My Heart To Stone” where a blunt chorus leads this tune into a guilty pleasure of melodic proportions.
The ball keeps rolling in the same style with “Shoot Me Down” and “Sunset Rider”, plenty of guitar antics alongside Matti’s excellent pipes stamp down a scorching groove.
A little Whitesnake inspired wails hint with “Tell Me”, while the AORish “Kiss of Death” and “Show Me the Money” go for a more catchy and hook-filled style. "More Than Meets the Eye" is the more riff-guitar oriented track on the CD, where Denander shines delivering a roaring guitar solo.
Another strong chorus is heard in “Break the Law”, whilst “Is This Love” (not a Whitesnake cover) adds some confidently bluesy sounds to the recording.


“Legacy Of Life” is a melodic yet punchy Classic Hard Rock album with a slight look to the Scandinavian style and a relevant glimpse of the American groovy legacy.
The quartet performs in high level as expected. Alfonzetti must be the best vocalist in the genre right now and his job is close to perfection, warm and modulated where needed while he can sound Sunset-Boulevard raised if the songs demand so.
The guitars are the ace on this disc musically driven by Denander, and the support combo Vassfjord &amp; Impera reminds you of how heavyhittin’ Hard Rock shall sound in the bass / drums field without any hesitation. 
The combination of all the above leads to an album that shows no traces of innovation but surely guarantees a damn fine listen.
Easily Recommended.


1. Turn My Heart To Stone
2. Kiss Of Death
3. Break The Law
4. Shoot Me Down
5. Sunset Rider
6. Tell me
7. More Than Meets The Eye
8. Is This Love
9. Show Me The Money
10. Dead-End Street

Matti Alfonzetti (vocals)
Tommy Denander (guitar, keyboards)
Mats Vassfjord (bass)
J.K. Impera (drums)


.
Admin · 382 views · 0 comments
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