Mercenary 11 Dreams

From orchestral intro to dying chords, 11 Dreams is a dramatic production, nearly pretentious, generally flamboyant, and consistently grandiose. A hybrid beast, Mercenary’s first album for Century Media feeds on thrash and a little death, but predominantly on progressive power metal with a heavy dose of melody. Carrying on much in the direction they took with 2002’s Everblack, which added clean vocals and keyboards to a harsher core, 11 Dreams works on an array of emotional extremes. Songs like seven and a half minute long "Firesoul” present a kaleidoscope of moods and tones, but other tracks, like "Sharpen the Edges,” wallow in gloom while still others rely on speed ("World Hate Center”), a fierce groove ("Supremacy v2.0”) or a laidback rock vibe ("Music Non Stop”). Musically, Denmark’s Mercenary are all over the place, which is potential unsettling but definitely never boring. (Century Media)