Serious Black
Magic
(AFM Records)

Serious Black is a relatively new band with just two records out and a brand new one, titled Magic. So, who is Serious Black and what do they sound like? The lads play a tight brand of melodic power metal which isn’t surprising considering the pedigree their band members sport having played with Firewind, Rhapsody, Tad Morose, Edenbridge, Visions of Atlantis and Dreasmscape. Bringing that kind of talent and experience to the table is the difference between “stars” and “superstars,” the latter of which Serious Black could become if they keep making records of the depth and caliber of Magic.

In recent years the band has gone from being a support act to HammerFall and Gamma Ray to headliners themselves, and later this fall they’ll embark on a tour to introduce the world to Magic and beyond, and well they should. Metal in general, especially melodic power metal, needs to be experienced in a live setting, that’s where bands such as Serious Black come alive and into their own, you know why? Because studios don’t make bands, touring does. When fans get up close and personal with Serious Black, they’ll connect, especially when songs from Magic get played live for the first time. That’s the game changer, mark my words.

Serious Black’s sound and image kind of teeter the line between power and commercial metal but aren’t afraid to go too much one way or the other. For example, track five, the radio friendly “Now You’ll Never Know,” finds the band slowing the pace down a bit, even dipping into an 80’s “Sunset Strip “sound balanced out by a natural heaviness Serious Black has, that runs beneath the song, hell, the entire record for that matter. In the end, it’ll win over metal purists and satisfy fans of the genre alike. My opinion? This should be a radio single right now, it’s that right on.

In a nutshell, that’s the appeal of Serious Black. It’s also the appeal of Magic as well. The band rides that edge between a commercial sound and something a bit heavier. And they do it well. That’s why I applaud them and this record. Both Serious Black and Magic fit nicely in the melodic power metal genre alongside Blind Guardian, Kamelot and Dragonforce. Magic is a pretty damn good record that deserves your attention. It’s catchy and hooky enough that it’ll get inside your head while satisfying your heavy sweet tooth at the same time.

Purchase the album here.

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