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  • “Visions” is by far and away the crowning moment in the musical history of Stratovarius. I thoroughly enjoyed the dreamy landscapes on “Twilight Time”, the experimental splendor of “Dreamspace” and the epic grandure of “Fourth Dimension”. But I’ll reveal an embarassing truth about “Visions”…the first time I ever heard the opening track “Black Diamond”, I became incontinent…that’s how stunning this music was and is today! I also still get chills (at the very least) from the amazing song “Paradise”, potentially my favorite Strat song ever! Yes, these boys have had their share of line-up changes over the years now and are getting washed out in a power metal scene that is overflowing with flashier material with updated sound. But this band was one of (if not THE) the true pioneers of the power metal genre as we define it today. And their willingness to stay devoted to music like this at a time when, at least in The United States, more bands were having financial success rapping and grunging, should never be forgotten or under-appreciated! All hail Stratovarius and their remarkable late 90’s accomplishment with “Visions”. An album that I still keep a box of Depends* in close proximity for, just in case I decide to listen to! 5/5 *****!

    Posted on January 15, 2010