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Elmo Karjalainen Elmo KarjalainenAge of Heroes

  1. Warm Welcome
  2. How Can Less Be More
  3. The Colour of Greed (feat. Derek Sherinian)
  4. Chikken Noodul
  5. A Fertile Discussion (feat. Mattias IA Eklundh)
  6. The Grassy Gnoll
  7. Blue Eyes
  8. Party Political Speech
  9. Age of Heroes
  10. A Meeting of the Gods (And This Guy)-(Feat. Janne Nieminen and Emil Pohjlainen Sunset)
  11. Return of the Silly English Person
  12. Falling for Falafels (feat. Mattias IA Eklundh)
  13. Lost in a Foreign Scale
  14. Three Days of Peace
  15. Limiting Rationality
  16. Breathe

Release Details

Genre :
Country :
Date : February 3, 2017


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When it comes to shred guitar, most would probably think that it's a played out genre that lacks any originality of any kind. This is enthusiastically not the case for Elmo Karjalainen's fourth album Age of Heroes. Not only are the songs uniquely original, but there are some stellar guest appearances on the album, as well. While the Yngwie Malmsteen influence is rather obvious, it's not so blatant that it's unenjoyable. The song How Can Less Be More is a big nod to Mssr. Malmsteen's mentality that more is definitely more. However, the Malmsteen influence is understandable. Elmo was a finalist in Yngwie's Guitar Gods competition in 2016, and it's undeniable that some of that greatness has rubbed off onto him.

The guest appearances on the album are flat out stellar. Derek Sherinian's keyboard solo on The Colour of Greed makes an amazing song even greater. The back-and-forth between those two masters of their respective instruments makes one wish and hope to see these two onstage at some point. They remind one of the potent combination of Yngwie and Jens Johansson trying to outdo one another onstage and in the studio. Mattias IA Eklundh also delivers some stinging solos on the songs A Fertile Discussion and Falling For Falafels respectively. His style compliments Elmo's playing wonderfully. You really feel like it's two guys sitting down in the studio enjoying each other's company and feeding of one another creatively rather than two guys eager to shred over audio files. Lastly, Janne Nieminen and Emil Pohjlainen exchange solos on the song A Meeting of the Gods (And This Guy). These two guitar maestros were some of Elmo's competition for the 2016 Guitar Gods experience he had. And after listening to that song, one has to check both of those players out. Simply phenomenal playing, and each individual solo adds to the quality of the song.

Typically albums full of guest stars like this tend to have subpar songs throughout the rest of the album. That is not the case here. Age Of Heroes is of the same quality as Steve Vai's Fire Garden album. Of course you can find shred guitar in plenty, but the playing touches on rather deeply complex topics such as politics and even life itself. But life isn't life without humor, and there are a few moments where you'll find yourself giggling at the funny bits on the album here and there.

All in all, this is a very satisfying album to listen to again and again. Each time you listen, you discover another layer of complexity that is thoroughly enjoyable. It's horribly inaccurate to label Elmo as the Finnish Yngwie because he has developed his own sound and style that is uniquely his own. In the liner notes of the album, he hints that the next record will be an acoustic one. It will be intriguing to see what he comes up with next, but one hopes that he will return to the electric guitar very soon. Expect to hear greater things from this guy. You won't be disappointed at all.

Website: www.elmojk.com
Facebook: facebook.com/elmojk
Twitter: twitter.com/elmokarjalainen
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/MrPolevaulter
SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/elmojkarjalainen/sets

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