Release Date: June 9, 2009 Catalog Number: RAR7872 UPC: 845121006315 Style: Melodic/Gothic Metal Tracks: 10 Time: 43:12 Lyrics: Yes Packaging: 6 panel full color digihub ABOUT THE ALBUM Founder of the band, vocalist Michael Hero, was raised in the cold northern part of Sweden. He started playing guitar when he was just 9 years old, rocking out to classic rockers like Kiss and Judas Priest. Michael now runs a real-life 'School Of Rock' project in Stockholm, working with youth and coaching many bands. In 2006, the band self-released an album called 'Bless This Nation' that features brothers Torbjörn and Tomas Weinesjö (from the legendary Veni Domine). Their sophomore release, IMMORTAL, instantly immerses the listener in an aura of majesty - heavy groove-ridden guitars (Bjorn), thundering bass, and bombastic drums (Danny Boy). But it is Michael's melodic baritone vocals that bring it all together with drama-filled, memorable, strong melodies. Don't expect to find Hero trying to be the loudest, play the fastest, or sing the highest, but definitely expect IMMORTAL to successfully grab the listener and intelligently journey through tragedy and triumph / despair & hope. IMMORTAL embraces what Hero does best by offering a strong classic rock & metal feel (Stryper, Kiss) combined with the dark, modern vibe of bands like Veni Domine, Saviour Machine, HIM, Lacuna Coil, and mid-period Deliverance! Goth-tinged metal filled with majesty and melody has finally found a worthy HERO! KEY SELLING POINTS **Full print ad and radio promotion campaign **Band has been gigging regularly throughout Sweden **Band made it's first U.S. appearance at Cornerstone Music Festival in July of '08 **Endorsed by Indie Guitars and Hagström Guitars ANGELIC WARLORD . COM REVIEW Swedish vocalist and guitarist Michael Hero (formerly Michael Hjelte) got his start in the late nineties as a member of Sons Of Thunder. Recording a four song demo entitled Metal Praise in 1998, Sons Of Thunder followed up with the full length efforts Load, Aim, Fire (2000) and Circus Of Power (2003). After Sons Of Thunder had run it's course, the artist formed Hero and released the full length debut Bless This Nation in 2006 before returning with Immortal three years later. Now, to fully appreciate Hero - particularly it's latest release Immortal - one has to first take a close look at Sons Of Thunder. Combining elements of power metal and thrash, Sons Of Thunder, when at it's best, bordered on the Deliverance-like in capacity. Songs such as "Atomic Power Praise" and "Exalt Him" (off Load, Aim, Fire) and "Rescue Me" and "Fighting" (from Circus Of Power) are nothing less than incredible. That said, the group proved inconsistent in that for every mind blowing moment there was one reflecting a lack of maturity and focus. The cheesy "Psalm 23" (perhaps the worst song in the history of Christian rock) and rap based "Flames Of Fire" (no, not a cover of the Leviticus classic), for example, cannot help but leave you scratching your head. The same lack of constancy found it's way onto Bless This Nation. With it's joining of hard rock, groove, funk and blues, the album - while quite the contrast to Sons Of Thunder - failed to hold up musically in that I ended up liking only four of it's songs. Hero, at the same time, maintained the penchant for the offbeat, reflected in the distracting narration found throughout Bless This Nation. And this leads us to Immortal, a standout release which finds the artist "growing up" in that it showcases the maturity, consistency and musical depth Michael Hero hinted at in the past but could not quite deliver. Gone are the bizarre "scratch your head moments" (you will find no rap vocals here) and cheesy narration; in it's place we are offered ten quality songs - no filler - backed by front to back continuity. Musically, Immortal heads in a heavier territory than Bless This Nation in combining touches of power metal and melodic metal with occasional Gothic overtones.