Formed in 2009 by vocalist and main songwriter Kobra Paige, this Canadian heavy metal act has already shaken foundations with their previous two studio albums. Can they raise the bar with the new studio album and continue their ascendancy in the rock and metal community? Judging by the inclusion of producer Johnny K known for his work with Enuff Z’Nuff, Disturbed and Megadeth amongst a plethora of others, the signs are certainly positive.
The balance of melody with the rapid metal-driven exhibition that is Heartbeat is impressive and is one of several evident highlights when you wrap your ears around this long player. With a majestic sweeping foray, Hold On shimmers within the moonlight whilst in contrast the album-opener Warhorse stomps its mighty hooves into the blood-soaked soil as it gallops with intent.
The ten tracks provide a glorious ebb and flow as Soldier slips in to Battle of Wrath and echoes of I Am I Am and the title track haunt the memories with their strong presence from earlier in the proceedings. Cohesive and a solid crisp sound all embrace the listening experience providing those on the receiving end with very little doubt that this is probably their best album so far. On Battle of Wrath you’ll hear some fast and furious and technically brilliant guitar work from Jasio Kulakowski as the band push the envelope.
Throughout the album the band avoid falling in to cliché territories or overly cheesy moments with their strong sense of melody. Visionary possesses a distant ghost of Iron Maiden in subtle amounts within its spirit as the song soars effortlessly. The celebration of strong female-fronting metal orientated bands seems to continue as the throng already acknowledge bands like Battle Beast, Crucified Barbara and the many others which rise from what appeared to be a graveyard of whispers.
Willow triumphantly rallies a dramatic finale leading the witness to album-closer Lost in the Shadows. As you’d quite possibly expect, this final track builds in epic transitions from an opening tranquil guitar to the edgy riffs that were showcased in previous songs. It works well as the final curtain call on album number three.
The journey through High Priestess is a pleasure and shows the band in confident stride. Those that hark back to the days of strong heavy metal with a potent sense of melody will not be disappointed with this and for those who appreciated what the band had to offer prior to this album, should take note of High Priestess containing a solid collection which rarely falls below mundane.