Holy fuck, it’s been a while since I’ve featured any power metal on here and I can’t let that stand. In order to rectify that oversight, here’s Scanner.
I’m fairly certain I stumbled on to Scanner through one of those “underrated” power metal bands forum threads or blog posting somewhere. I’m often scouring those things for lost power metal treasures and I’ve unearthed a pirates booty of buried treasure (quite literally sometimes, cough Running Wild cough) and Scanner was a pretty sweet find indeed. Maybe not the rarest of jewels, though well polished, I imagine Scanner had a hard time sticking out amongst the German crowd, in the 80’s or even the 90’s when this was released. German power metallers like Blind Guardian, Helloween, Gamma Ray, Grave Digger, and Running Wild were dominating that scene and rightfully so. Scanner had a sweet sci-fi bend to them that was a bit different but by 1996’s Ball of the Damned that seemed to take a backseat.
I’d place this band musically between Grave Digger and Blind Guardian. They’re fairly straight forward power metal on this album. They’re more serious than Grave Digger and less focussed on the power of being metal but they’re not as well polished as Blind Guardians epic sound, even though they’re dealing with fantastical imagery (and a heavy Queen influence). They’re sort of meat and potatoes German power metal, stepping briefly into speed metal territory but keeping things focussed on the riffs and the power instead of the chanty, singalong choruses the German power metal bands do so well.
In the end this is a fairly solid and fun album from a time period where metal was at it’s lowest point. Sticking to their guns, Scanner pulled of some solid power metal for us.