Letter X - Reflections

Year of Release: 1996
Label: Zero Corporation
Catalog Number: XRCN 1269
Format: CD
Total Time: 00:00:00

Before I get into this particular disc, I just want to backtrack for a few minutes and dig into the history of this band to give you an idea of how this band has changed over the years ...

It always amazed me how bands like Riot, Whitesnake, Rainbow and many others along the way continually change members, themes, styles, ideas, etc ... sometimes this is not always for the good ... personally, I like to follow bands like Queensryche, who have managed to stay intact from the beginning, however I realize that this is a rare occurrence as not many bands can stay together for so many years and keep on putting out great music throughout their whole career ...

What has happened to Letter X is that they have changed so many aspects of their band and style over the span of their 7-year, 3-disc career that I know about, that its not only hard to predict when they will put out a new one because of their obscurity, but you never know what you are going to get when they do, and thus it becomes a gamble putting your money down on these guys .....

Letter X - Time Of The Gathering (1991)

This was the first disc that I know about that Letter X put out, and if you look at the year, its not too far off of the year in which Whitesnake was doing their thing ... and this is about what you get from this disc ... Some real good Whitesnake-like melodies, definitely worthy of air guitar playing, complete with a David Coverdale sound-alike ... it actually works for me and this comes out every now and then just to hear what maybe Whitesnake should have continued playing, or just to whip out the old air guitar when the mood hits ... everyone eho has ever heard this disc hears the Whitesnake similarities, and it pretty much went unnoticed I would assume because of this ....

Letter X - Born Into Darkness (1992)

The lineup pretty much stays the same, except that the singers have changed now, and there is now a Don Henley-type sound alike at the helm ... he is quite the good, higher-pitched operatic singer with just a but of a Don Henley tone to his voice, and he also reminds me a bit of Steve Perry ... with the change of singers, comes a completely different approach to their sound as well .. Interestingly enough, this disc came out about a year after the first one, and its amazing that a band would go through a drastic change like this ... Gone is the 80's Whitesnake sound, and in its place, are some pretty good, almost progressive / melodic metal that rings of the 80's but maintains a 90's style sound ... the sound of the disc is very different as well, the guitars are not as clear and prominent as on Time Of The Gathering, yet the music at times is obvioiusly more mature and more thought-out than on previous efforts ... a very interesting change in only a year time between discs ...

Letter X - Reflections (1996)

4 years later ... different singer, different bass player, different sound and style ... not only that, they have signed with the Japanese ZERO label, making this disc hard to find and very $$$ ... is it worth the wait? You would think that after 6 years together, the band would finally settle on a signature sound, or at least mature and give it a big surge of energy and become a BAND to be reckoned with ... well, I've had the disc for several weeks, and I still can't figure out what it is that they want to do ... it would appear that they have once again are experimenting with trying to give some melodic metal a 90s sound without losing the punch ... well, frankly, its not working ... the new singer is the weakest of the 3 that they have had, and he has a lower-toned voice that limits what he can sing, and thus the band has opted to produce some mediocre, melodic metal which is at times very enjoyable, but not very memorable ... there are the obligatory ballads, some of the rockers, even a bluesy-based tune (probably leftover from their Whitesnake days), and while lots of it is not bad, some of it is just plain old boring ... I really don't know that this will get much more play time than it has, because there are just too many good and more powerful discs coming into my hands as of late, and realistically, if I wanted some great Letter X, I would go back and whip out my air guitar and out on Time of the Gathering again ... I am not sure if this the end of Letter X, but they will really have to pull out all of the stops and go back to the thinking board and work some magic back into their life ... however, if it takes them another 4 years to do this, it could spell doom for the X boys ...

Snowman / No Way Out / Falling / No Solution / Final Destination / The Warning / More Than I Can Say / Reflections (Of Madness) / Crucified

Thomas Kroel - vocals
R?diger Fleck - guitar
Michael Faisst - guitar
Toni Ieva - bass
Marco Ieva - drums
J?rgen Stahl - keyboard

Time Oof The Gathering (1991)
Born Into Darkness (1992)
Reflections (1996)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin DE

Added: July 25th 1999
Reviewer: Larry "LarryD" Daglieri

Hits: 1580
Language: english


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