There are only a handful of names that has managed all these years to retain a cult yet loyal following and at the same time build a myth around their status as every piece of info around them was quite literally non existent. Through the years, Q5 were nowhere to be seen or found for that matter and totally out of the blue came the announcement last year of some reunion shows. Up next came the news of an imminent third studio album which would mark the band’s return after a 30-year absence. As one can easily gather, the demands were high, the expectations bigger and the anxiety reaching high levels as all the fans of US melodic metal were expecting nothing less than yet another masterpiece by Q5? Did we get what we deserved?
Well, the truth is that if we get into the notion of comparing the new album with either “Steel The Light” or “When The Mirror Cracks” then the new album is surely doomed. It’s like comparing Iron Maiden’s “Dance of Death” with “Powerslave” or something. For starters, guitarist Floyd Rose has retired and time has left its unavoidable mark to the rest of the band. From a musical standpoint, the firs half of “New World Order” does not remind anything of the trademark Q5 sound. It’s closer to latter Krokus and AC/DC than anything else. The second half of the album is much closer to what we would probably expect from the American outfit with three songs standing out right from the first listening session: the almost epic “Unrequited”, the ultra melodic “A Prisoner Of Mind” and the catchy as hell “Just One Kiss” which is simply the best cut on the album.
All in all, the third Q5 album is not exactly what we had expected by Q5 but that criticism is almost unfair after all these years. It’s an OK album with some really respectable moments. Those who’d expected a natural successor of “Steel The Light” or even “When The Mirror Cracks” will not be satisfied, though…
Highlight: The second track on the album is called “One Night In Hellas” and it was inspired by the band’s virgin Greek show.