Track Listing
· Soul Of The Beast
· When Worlds Collide (1)
· Sleep Of The Dead
· Stand, Sentinel (2)
· Life (3)
· Warrior Spirit
· Mystic Wings
· Love Is Pain
· Earth Maker
· Soul To Soul

(*) Best Tracks

· Mind Journey
· Permanent Mark
· Also see: Artension & Royal Hunt

Buy it if you liked:
Royal Hunt - The Mission
Artension - Sacred Pathways
Earth Maker
Frontiers Records FRCD 111
· Produced By: John West & Lonnie Parks
· Running Time: 55.58 · Genre: European Melodic Metal
· Release Date: Out Now · Released: EU
· WebLink: Royal Hunt · LabelLink: Frontiers

John West has made quite a name for himself these past few years. He put in an excellent performance on a Cozy Powell tribute record, 4 records with Artension and of course, his recent role as singer for Royal Hunt, replacing DC Cooper.
Earth Maker sees John stepping out under his own name for the third time.
While it's a solo record, it isn't far from the style and sound of his most recent projects.
So it should be of no surprise to also hear that this is a record of very high quality – both production and song quality. It's also easily his best solo record.
Earth Maker is a concept album based on the story of the Native American spirit “Shenandoah” on his journey through time and lives as he embarks on his “Vision Quest” to meet the Earth Maker. Each song describes the world and the universe through his eyes.
That said, the album isn't a heavy duty 'in your face' concept album, it's readily accessible on a track by track basis. As usual West's vocals are immense.
Musically, the style is slightly different than the progressive friendly Royal Hunt, with a more straight forward European melodic metal sound in play.
The mid-tempo but heavy Soul Of The Beast leads off the album, lifting tempo into When World's Collide, a great fast tempo'd double-kick drum hard rock anthem in the finest tradition of West's past performances.
Sleep Of The Dead features a very in your face guitar riff, with a stronger modern rock sound.
Stand, Sentinel is one of the album's big epic power ballad. Clocking in at nearly 8 minutes, the emotional and powerful song is essential listening.
Life heads in the more aggressive modern rock direction again, with a few interesting vocal performances from West, including a heavy 'rapping' verse.
Warrior Spirit again features a very heavy, tuned down guitar sound, but West's up-in-the-mix vocals make the song more melodic.
The 7 minute long Mystic Wings is another slow, powerful epic. This track is not a ballad as such though; it just features a slow tempo and a true epic rock spirit.
Love Is Pain rocks hard! This aggressive modern rocker features a huge snarling vocal and a very contemporary sound. The song features some great drum rhythms and shredding guitar work.
Earth Maker is heavy and epic, although it only runs 5 minutes. It features touches of a heavy retro Led Zeppelin vibe.
Soul To Soul is different again. The 6 minute track kicks off with only John and a piano and slowly builds – rounding off the story of the album's journey lyrically and musically.
It almost sounds like a super intense Toto in places. A fine way to close the album, with plenty of passion and another side of John West's great Glenn Hughes like vocals.

The Bottom Line
Given that the band features members of Halford, it's a guarantee that this is powerful, high quality music.
A musically intense record, with very satisfying production is made ever more accessible and listenable by John West's great vocal performance and the strength of the song's melodies.
Still, this is an album for fans of the European heavy rock genre, but one that should please all fans of West's and hopefully some new folks also.
Especially those that have only known him since his joining of Royal Hunt. There's certainly a lot to this vocalist – get to know him soon.

Line Up
· John West: Vocals
· Metal Mike Chlasciak: Guitar
· Lonnie Park: Keyboards
· Bobby Jarzombek: Drums
· Kevin Chown: Bass
· Guests: Andre Andersen and Vitalij Kuprij.

Additional Ratings

AOR Heaven NEH Records Z-Roxx Loud 1 Destiny Hot Tracks Target Wishing Well Loud Metal Perris