Subdued and pastoral, the abbreviated intro is less a standard, bland “intro track” than an opening of a door, a passing through of a gate…that is until the rough ‘n’ ragged guitar tone of ‘The Hammer’ crashes down, frayed around the edges, and the better for it, reminiscent of the passion-over-proficiency so prevalent in the garage days of power/thrash. Not that the Bavarians aren’t skilled at their craft. Far from it, in fact, especially when the pace slows down ¾ of the way through to give the solo room to breath.

After the Sacred Heart-era DIO influence of ‘Inside Your Head, the title track charges out of the garden, and I must confess that, even though his work is almost exclusively in the mid-range, I am truly enjoying the vocals of Nicolas Peter, his balls-out delivery reminiscent of Rhett Forrester or even Dee Snider back when he was worth a shit. He’s able to hit the high notes, but doesn’t rely on them to get the job done, even in somewhat lighter fare like ‘Through The Storm’.

‘Thought Of An Idea’ rips the lid off, speed and hard driving staccato riffs, INVICTUS proving themselves none too shabby at arranging track order on an album. If the set lists are this well-curated live, watch out! A thrash nod pops up in the post-chorus, sure to please the battle vest & Converse All-Star crowd. Compared to the rest of Eden thus far, ‘Livin’ In The Future’ is a bit of a dead spot, sounding more like a Eurovision entry than a metal song, and ‘Break The Chains’ simply isn’t up to the high caliber set before either. Thankfully, the tasteful acoustics and pensiveness of ‘Styx’ hit all the marks, a well-blended mixture of BLACK SABBATH’s ‘Solitude’ or ‘Changes’ and AOR.

Situated perfectly as the finale, ‘Burning Empire’ opens majestically, and conjures Joe Lynn Turner RAINBOW, forsaking none of the metal gravitas, bits of the much-underrated ZED YAGO popping up in the vocal harmonies, always a win for these ears. In all, Eden makes for a quite solid debut with the heft of metal and the memorability of hard rock, both delivered with passion, pride, and power.
Review By: Lord Randall

Pure Steel Records
4 / 6