December 14, 2021

The Finnish melodic power metal Burning Point was formed in 1999 and has now released eight albums of in your face heavy metal but, I think it fair to say, that the band has never really hit the heights achieved by the leading lights in melodic power metal.

Of course, each album has seen some sort of progression and the band leader Pete Ahonen has never been afraid to crack the whip or move musicians in and out of the band in pursuit taking Burning Point to the top of the tree. Album number eight, Arsonist Of The Soul, sees yet another revamping of the band and they now line-up with Luca Sturniolo on vocals, Pete Ahonen and Pekka Kolivuori on guitars, Jarkko Poussu on bass, Tuomas Jaatinen on drums, and Matti Halonen on keyboards. Band creator, song writer and guitarist Ahonen originally provided the vocals too in the early days and he has a great rock voice but relinquished these duties so that he could concentrate on his guitar playing and he brought in the ex-Battle Beast singer Nitte Valo with his higher register and truly commanding vocals. The question as to whether he was a better frontman than Ahonen is a matter of debate but he brought something a little different to the band and, to me, they sounded a little more like a German power metal band which is no bad thing.

It’s all change again with Valo leaving the band to be replaced by the Italian, but long time Finnish resident, singer Luca Sturniolo and he seems to have comfortably slotted into the band. He has a register closer to Ahonen and his powerful, classic rock voice is a pleasing combination of Klaus Meine and Giacomo Voli (Rhapsody Of Fire) and he totally commands your attention. Also new to the band are bassist Jarkko Poussu, drummer Tuomas Jaatinen and keyboard player Matti Halonen and bringing in four new band members could have been a spectacular failure but with great risks also come great rewards and all of the new musicians have immediately settled in and have helped to make Arsonist Of The Soul possibly the bands heaviest album to date and definitely the most accomplished. The two guitarists have combined perfectly so that you get lots of angry riffs and screaming solos but all built on a totally melodic platform with great tunes and plenty of vocal harmonies as well as sumptuous and quite sublime individual passages and all to a lush background of rich keyboards. Pete Ahonen just needs to keep this version of the -band together for a couple of albums as there is a definite chemistry and you can tell the band is on the verge of a new and exhilarating career.

Arsonist Of The Soul is a fabulous melodic metal and contains everything that you want from your power metal and if you are into bands like Stratovarius, Brainstorm and Freedom Call then you are going to love it.

Arsonist Of The Soul

  1. Blast In The Past (3:12)
  2. Rules The Universe (3:28)
  3. Out Of Control (Savage Animals) (3:48)
  4. Persona Non Grata (4:15)
  5. Arsonist Of The Soul (4:54)
  6. Hit The Night (3:21)
  7. Running In The Darkness (3:20)
  8. Calling (4:54), Off The Rada
  9. (3:32), Fire With Fire (5:00)
  10. Will I Rise With The Sun (3:56
  11. Eternal Life (5:30)