Mob Rules are one of those bands that should be a lot more famous than they are. At least, that’s my take on it. The biggest issue for them is being labeled as “power metal” when that seems like a very minor part of their sound at this point. “Tales From Beyond” showcases all the things that I like about this German band: great hooks, killer vocals and an epic vibe.
“Dykemaster’s Tale” kicks off the album and it’s the best Iron Maiden song that Maiden never did. The band does have a Maiden element to their sound, which is part of the reason I like them, and this song takes that to the max. A big sound with great vocals and drummer Nikolas Fritz sounding a lot like Nicko McBrain. I love it!
The key to anything Mob Rules does is that songs are always memorable. HOOKS! “On The Edge” is a perfect example. As soon as I type that title, the chorus is ringing in my head. Another key is the musicianship. Part of why I think prog metal fans should check out Mob Rules is because each member of this band can really play. The guitar solos (dual solos even) plus they have a great keyboard player in Jan Christian Halfbrodt who even breaks out the mellotron for both intros on “A Tale From Beyond (Part 1: Through The Eye Of The Storm)” and “A Tale From Beyond (Part 2: A Mirror Inside).”
The title track trilogy is definitely prog but the one problem with it, the songs have a break in between them when they should effortlessly flow together. Seems like a glitch but I would have loved to have the three songs presented as one long piece. That’s really the only criticism that I have!
Vocalist Klaus Dirks sounds incredible throughout. He reminds me a lot of Tony Martin, who is a favorite of mine. Check out “A Tale From Beyond (Part 2: A Mirror Inside)” as a good example of that. He also has a little bit of countryman Andi Deris in him as well.
So if Mob Rules aren’t power metal, what are they? Well, what do you consider Iron Maiden? Maiden have elements of power metal but their sound is more than that. The same is true for Mob Rules. Perhaps “Tales From Beyond” will be the album that finally gets Mob Rules the global recognition that they’ve missed out on for years. I really hope so. This album is an excellent outing for a band that always releases top quality albums.
4. On The Edge
5. My Kingdom Come
6. The Healer
7. Dust Of Vengeance 4:54
8. A Tale From Beyond (Part 1: Through The Eye Of The Storm)
9. A Tale From Beyond (Part 2: A Mirror Inside)
10. A Tale From Beyond (Part 3: Science Save Me!)
11. Outer Space (bonus track)
Label: Steamhammer / SPV