Dragonforce has been a leading name in power metal for years -since 1999 to be exact. Given they started under the name Dragon Heart and went by that until 2002, but none the less, they are known legends in the genre.
They've released six full length albums, and have had sixteen singles over the years. This year, to reflect and celebrate all the success they've had, they're releasing a Greatest Hits album. This album is called Killer Elite and will be out officially on July 23, and features twenty two songs from their discography. This does include some live material, and there's a deluxe digital edition with a DVD that includes all of the band's promo clips (Hits, Highs and videos.)
This is exciting for fans, because they can have many of their absolute favorites from Dragonforce all in one place, and due to their popularity, this would be a bit hard to review. All the songs have been out for years. Some have been out since 2003 even, while others are only a couple years old.
As someone who has never really listened to Dragonforce before, but has known their name for years, a Greatest Hits album seemed like a great way to learn what they're all about, and see how much they've changed and grown over the years. Now obviously they included, "Through The Fire And Flames" on this, which everyone knows for the badass guitar riffs that are in it, so of course that one was important to mention.
This may sound bad, but that was the only song I had knowingly heard from Dragonforce, I'm postive there's been many others I've heard, just I didn't know them by name. So, I went into this completely blind, or in this case -deaf.
What I discovered was a few tracks that I wish I had known before. Those tracks include, "Holding On", "Reasons To Live" and "Heart Of A Dragon."
"Holding On" is from their 2012 album, The Power Within, and not only is it incredibly well done musically, but its one of those 'feel good' tracks. It encourages people to fight til the end, and keep going, even when it feels like you're alone and all is lost. I'm a sucker for tracks like that, and then to have it heavy and badass all at once? You have to love it.
"Reason To Live" has a similar vibe to it, lyrically but is a bit more personal. Its a cry for help, and it is asking someone to give him a reason to live, or die. Reason To Live is from their 2008 album, Ultra Beatdown.
Lastly, there's "Heart Of A Dragon", which appears to reference their original band name, Dragonheart. That was the biggest reason I wanted to acknowledge this song, but it also tells quite the story. When you listen to it, you picture an epic, mythical and medieval battle. It not only tells that story, but does encourage people to stand together, and ride on. Its pretty fantastic, and is from their first album as Dragonforce, Valley of The Damned from 2003.
Something I thought was really interesting about Dragonforce is every aspect of the song is present. Sometimes, when there's heavy, fast paced music, I sometimes feel that the vocals can be drowned out. They don't have that, you hear everything very well, and that's something I appreciated a lot.
All in all, I think Dragonforce is very smart to release a greatest hits album. More bands should do it, because as I said, its great for all. Those who are new, can use is to get a full taste of what the band has to offer, and fans can have all of their favorites on just one album. Killer Elite comes out on July 23, and is available for pre-order right now through Dragonforce's official website, iTunes or Amazon.
Unfortunately, this is only for those in the UK, but perhaps it will expand to other countries in the future, or another one will be released.
You can also get excited because Dragonforce will be performing at many festivals all over Europe this summer! For more information head on over to their official website.
All reviews have the date they were written, the album title, and the band's name, with the exception of Life Starts Now by Three Days Grace and Dear Agony by Breaking Benjamin. Those dates were guessed at, as they were written well before the website began.