ROYAL HUNT - On A Mission To Mars
By Martin Popoff

Danish prog metal kings Royal Hunt are readying their seventh album, The Mission, for an August release. Based on Ray Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles, the album is indeed a concept record, described by leader Andre Andersen as "basically one long 50-minute song," although don't take that literally: it isn't.

Containing such tracks as 'Total Recall', Judgement Day' and 'Days Of No Trust', the album, in Andre's opinion is a big departure for the band, even if to these ears it is a similar Rainbow-inspired slice of classical metal to its predecessor, if a little crunchier. "In my personal opinion, it's completely different from Fear. I mean, whatever Fear was, The Mission is completely the opposite, black and white. That might not be the opinion of the fans and critics, but to us, we were going for something completely in a different direction. If Fear was all hi-fi sounding, very full and large, The Mission has more of a penetration effect. It's very edgy, very guitar-driven, but then again it's only our opinion (laughs). And also, The Mission is a concept album, based on the book by Ray Bradbury. We wanted to make something edgier, more aggressive. It kind of fits the main issue or the main theme of the book, all this alien stuff. So we wanted it colder, more digital. And in terms of the keyboards, most of the time I use more contemporary sounds, strings and chords, more orchestra-like sounding keyboards. This time we used more '70s sounds, synthesizer sounds and some dance sounds like people listen to right now on the radio. There's a lot of very computerized or techno-sounding stuff this album, because we were dealing with science fiction and it fit. So there were a lot of triggers on drums, some weird percussion sounds. "

ROYAL HUNT - On A Mission To Mars Page 2