OUTWORLD – Outworld

  • 8.5/10
    OUTWORLD - Outworld - 8.5/10


Replica Records
Release Date: November 13, 2006

User Review
10/10 (1 vote)

If someone told you that the band Outworld had just released one of 2006’s best Progressive Metal (emphasis on the “Metal”) albums, you’d unsurprisingly ask what country they are from. Surprisingly, the answer wouldn’t be Norway, Italy, Brazil, or any other European country. You might be surprised to find that the answer remarkably is … Houston, Texas, USA!

Outworld’s self-titled debut, and the band themselves, have a lot going for them straight out of the starting gate. For starters, the band has strong backing from John Petrucci (Dream Theater), Mark Tremonti (Alter Bridge, Creed), Jeff Loomis (Nevermore), and Gus Monsanto (Adagio). Additionally, the band was able to secure the infamous Tommy Hansen of Helloween fame to master this strong debut. To top things off, the band includes a well-known guitarist in shredder Rusty Cooley who sparks a fair share of attention to the band in the form of shred-loving guitar aficionados.

The album itself was lyrically handled by vocalist Carpenter (who since has left the band) and could easily pass as a concept album. The story revolves around a futuristic city (Outworld) that’s a mass of concrete, steel, despair, and dark emotions and chronicles the development of a God-like, perhaps in his mind, entity named Thanatos. Needless to say, with a storyline like this and song titles like, “Raise Hell,” “City Of The Dead,” “Prelude To Madness,” etc., there are no ballads or love songs on this nine-track festival of Metal muscle.

Musically, the band rocks and the release should keep the technical pundits happy in their glory. The music is characterized by an energetic rhythm section that fuels the music, as does heavy guitars, and shred-like solos that are accompanied by high-pitched, falsetto vocals. For example, Halford fans will thoroughly enjoy one of the spotlight tracks on the release, “War Cry,” where Carpenter puts in a vocal performance that Rob would be proud to claim. Also, there are plenty of solos throughout, full of their fair share of shredding by Cooley, which should please all interested guitar aficionados. Williamson also gets in a tasteful keyboard solo or two, which might turn off the purest of diehard Metal fans, but hey, this is “Progressive,” though “heavy,” and Williamson thankfully stays away from the dreaded, dated Hammond Organ sound … so all is good.

Bottom line, this is one hell of a heavy Progressive Metal release that should satisfy a wide audience of listeners (e.g., Progressive, Metal, Guitar Shredders, etc.). The band is currently working on material for a second release with new Brazilian vocalist Carlos Zema, and Metal Express Radio is assured by the band that Carlos can capably handle the vocal bar set by Carpenter on this debut. If the band can perform this material confidently live, then Outworld, the band, constitutes one great package and becomes one of the bands to watch in the coming year! Nevertheless, it’ll be exciting to see what their follow-up release brings in 2007!


Kelly Sundown Carpenter – Vocals
Rusty Cooley – Guitars
Shawn Kascak – Bass
Bobby Williamson – Keyboards
Matt McKenna – Drums


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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