EMPIRE – Chasing Shadows

EMPIRE - Chasing Shadows
  • 5.5/10
    EMPIRE - Chasing Shadows - 5.5/10


Release date: November 23, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

The fourth album, another lineup. Rolf Munkes’ band (or should it rather be called a project?) consists of new members, but hardly new faces. Neil Murray of Whitesnake fame is the only other constant in this everchanging band, the other two guys are recruited for this album, and one is tempted to bet that they will not be present on the next release. Mike Terrana on drums changes bands more often than his shirt, having played in about two dozen bands and projects including Rage, Axel Rudi Pell, Artension, and Masterplan, now adding Empire to the list. The other is Doogie White, best know for his work with Malmsteen, Rainbow, and Cornerstone.

After this impressive name dropping, it will come as no surprise that Chasing Shadows consists of 10 tracks of Classic Hard Rock, mixing influences from Whitesnake, Black Sabbath’s Dio years, and Rainbow. So if you are familiar with this kind of music, and like it, you’ll get another album to stand next to the ones of the aforementioned bands. But, since this genre is not new and not unexploited, what is the best reason to buy this album instead of putting on one of the classics? Well, that is the crux: there is none.

There is no flaw in the album from the technical side, as all four do well, as can be expected especially from these veterans of Melodic Metal, and Doogie White is always nice to hear. The problem lies in the compositions. While the opening title track is the best track on the album, an up-tempo Rock song with great keys, and the following “The Altar” and “Mother Father Holy Ghost” can still be considered good, everything that follows is merely mediocre. All the songs are set in mid-tempo, are fairly long and on the brink of being epic, but lack heart and enthusiasm, sometimes even White’s vocal lines are just so blatantly standard that the album passes you by without making a lasting impression. Everything just lacks character, the album gives the feeling of being a professional, but uninspired, Rock album. Two songs, “Child Of The Night” and “A Story Told,” even must be considered below the quality level one can rightfully expect from such an illustrious round of Rock heroes. The other three albums before were all better than Chasing Shadows.

There is not much more to be said. If you like the style, check it out, but when considering the musicians, it cannot be called anything but a disappointment. So, what you have is three good tracks and two boring ones, making a just above average release. Herr Munkes, next time with feeling!


  • Frank Jaeger

    Frank was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Bavaria, Germany. He has worked in the games industry for more than 20 years, now on the manufacturing side, before on the publishing end. Before this, he edited and handled the layout for a city mag in northern Germany ... maybe that is why he love being part of anything published. Frank got hooked on Metal at the age of 14 when a friend introduced him to AC/DC. They were listening to The Beatles, Madness, and The Police, and he decided they should move on. Well, they did, Back in Black became Frank's first Metal album, and since Germany is reasonably close to England, they had some small New Waves Of British Heavy Metal washing up on their shores: Tygers Of Pan Tang, Samson, Gillan, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Sweet Savage, Diamond Head, etc. If he had to pick his favorite styles, Prog and Power Metal would be at the top of the list.

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