Millions of years ago, the earth we know was ruled by mighty dinosaurs. These majestic creatures were reigning the glorious kingdom called earth (yes, the whole globe was one shiny dinosaur kingdom!). But one day, who could have expected, evil aliens from out of space were invading Earths kingdom to conquer and enslave all beings. Only the Holy Dinoforce, a special dinosaur task force consisting of the strongest, fastest and coolest dinosaurs, could protect the realm.
And thus the stage is set for Victorius’s latest EP: “Dinosaur Warfare – Legend of the Power Saurus.”
The album fits nicely into the space between the unapologetically epic metal of Dragonforce and the straight faced self-parody of Gloryhammer. While it’s played completely straight, clearly Victorius was having a lot of fun putting together the soundtrack to the the Holy War between dinosaurs and aliens. But what stands out the most to me isn’t the excellent album art (“excellent” in the same sense as “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure”) or the over the top lyrics, but the way the band’s sound really harkens back to the classic power metal of the 90s that I grew up on, as exemplified by Gamma Ray and Helloween.
The lyrics, ripped from the fever dreams of the most imaginative eight year old you ever met, combined with the spirit of classic power metal, evoke a strange sense of nostalgia. While I never actually sat and played with dinosaur toys while listening to Gamma Ray’s “Somewhere Out in Space” (all my dinosaur toys had been sadly packed away long before that album came out), listening to “Dinosaur Warfare – Legend of the Power Saurus” approximates the feeling pretty well.
Musically “Dinosaur Warfare – Legend of the Power Saurus” never lets up. It is 21 minutes and 15 seconds of pure laser powered dinosaur assault. The closest thing you’re going to get to a ballad is a few seconds of weapon sounds and dinosaurs roaring. That’s right – this is an album filled with music that makes the noise of dinosaur battle sound like a ballad by comparison. The strongest musical moments of the album come right in the middle with “Legend of the Power Saurus” and “Laser Tooth Tiger” (I’m assuming that after reading that the album had a song titled “Laser Tooth Tiger” you went out and bought it without any further thought). “Legend of the Power Saurus” is a solid track that’s elevated by a solo section which slides in some familiar melodies that are sure to get a reaction during live performances – I won’t spoil it for you here. “Laser Tooth Tiger” is a perfect distillation of the rest of the album. Introductory sound effects? Check. Prehistoric creatures with steel claws and laser teeth? Check. Huge melodic chorus? Check. Face melting instrumental section? Check. What else do you need?
“Dinosaur Warfare – Legend of the Power Saurus” isn’t a groundbreaking album that will elevate the genre to new heights, nor is it likely to be the seminal power metal album of 2018, but it’s without a doubt the best album ever written about dinosaurs with lasers beams saving the earth from an alien invasion. The short runtime ends up being a strength of the album as well. I’m always excited to hear new power metal, but then I get listening fatigue after 4 or 5 tracks. Victorius solves that problem by providing just the right dosage of epicness, speed, and melody. With huge riffs, soaring choruses, and epic lyrics, “Dinosaur Warfare – Legend of the Power Saurus” does the only thing I could really ask of it – deliver on the promise of its album art.
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