Gygax – High Fantasy

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Gygax is named after Gary Gygax, the co-creator of the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. They released their third album ‘High Fantasy‘ on June 21, 2019. This album is for me the first one to hear of them. In 2016, they released their first album ‘Critical Hits‘. An album with a hard rock touch to its metal grooves. In 2018 we got ‘2nd Edition‘, another album with a hard rock heart.

High Fantasy has a pure heavy metal core. It sounds like the hard rock side got dropped a bit, due to the use of an almost constantly noodling guitar. The rock is still there, it’s just a bit below the surface. It does still sound amazing and is comparable with the previous albums. High Fantasy has more guitar and power to blast out of your speakers.

Only the names of the tracks on High Fantasy already show the skills of the wizards behind this. It’s catchy, heavy and your mind is in a playground.
Top that off with killer solos by lead guitarist Bryant Throckmorton and you’ve summarized this album.

The groovyness, as I like to call it, especially comes up with the second song ‘Hide Mind’. Short strums in the riffs and the catchiness is on.

https://youtu.be/mU-pz_9dduc

Mirror Image’ is a slower song that shows a bit of Volbeat vibes. You know, the ‘rock n roll even your mother likes’ kind of vibes. Calm, yet clear vocals on top of a smooth riff with a chilling lead guitar that steals the show.

Then in the middle of the album, there’s a nice, rather short, instrumental piece called ‘Acquisition, Magnis Canis’. It continues with the same chill/smooth yet rock ‘n roll vibes as the previous track ‘Mirror Image’.

The next song ‘Spell Shaker’ has again that heavy, catchy vibe form the beginning of the album.
Closer of the album and title track ‘High Fantasy’ says it all:

‘Skies splintering, eyes opening, lives flourishing, high fantasy‘.

You need a little bit of fantasy in your life to enjoy it to the fullest.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNRbZ_E765s&feature=youtu.be

One remark: sometimes the lead guitar is a bit too active, meaning that there is a lot of noodling on the guitar which sometimes makes it sound a little panicky.

In conclusion: this is a really cool heavy metal/ rock ‘n roll album. It has different vibes to it, which made me give it the two genres. There is a very active solo guitar, which sounds cool, but can be a bit too much as well.

Release date: June 21, 2019
Label: Creator-Destructor Records
Tracklist:

  1. Light Bender
  2. Hide Mind
  3. Mage Lust
  4. Mirror Image
  5. Acquisition, Magnus Canis
  6. Spell Shaker
  7. Something So Familiar
  8. The Eyes Have It
  9. High Fantasy

REVIEW SCORE

  • Music7/10
  • Lyrics/Vocals7/10
  • Production/Mix8/10
  • Artwork/Packaging7/10
  • Originality8/10
7.4High Fantasy has a pure heavy metal core. It sounds like the hard rock side of previous albums got dropped a bit, due to the use of an almost constantly noodling guitar. The rock is still there, it's just a bit below the surface. This is a really cool heavy metal/ rock ‘n roll album. It has different vibes to it. There is a very active solo guitar, which sounds cool, but can be a bit too much as well.
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