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June 20, 2024

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Jacobs Dream
Drama of the Ages (Metal Blade)

By: Vinnie Apicella

Drama of the Ages is their third album since they began in 2000 and proves every bit as powerful and dignified as their past work, only this time, they present a new vocalist, Chaz Bond, who joins the original four and takes the sound further into the traditional power metal / thrash terrain.

Led by the heavy and melodic title track, the twelve overall are a varietal group that rise and fall in spirit and tone, stagger in pace, and present themselves much as we'd expect the bigger names in the ranks like an Iron Savior, Primal Fear or Iced Earth with more than a brief nod to classic era Priest with Maiden basslines. Bond's vocal range is sturdy and strong without stretching the stage light, not dissimilar to a Ripper Owens, but more akin to a James Rivera, while the rest of the band expectedly reels off challenging riffs and dueling guitar scales with bull-charging ferocity -- "Keeper of the Crown," "Stand or Fall," for starters, with "Forever Winter" letting the dogs loose at the onset with a three minute-plus jam combining the shred-elements of vintage Megadeth and Metal Church before Bond's boundary bending cry outs cut through as the rhythm rumbles.

For the most part, JD spares us from any overindulgent eight or ten minute storybook work-through, though thematically, if one could assume, they tread through times past and present touching upon the meaning of life, questions of existence, tyranny, triumph, and first person excursions from the ground up. Drama of the Ages is another respectable effort for Jacobs Dream who continues to solidify their name as one of true Metal's most reliable, particularly at a pivotal moment for them, changing vocalists and running with the ring, rising in kind with their spiritual beliefs toward the ultimate reward.

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