History & BiographyFreedom Call is a German speed metal act with good chops which was formed by several former Lanzer members. While the band uses keyboards, they generally follow the Teutonic speed metal pattern well. A Japanese/French EP was released in 1999 and bore the Taragon title. Lanzer and China White were cover bands and the members where active in that scene until wisely venturing into original material.
Freedom Call supported Saxon to support the debut, Hammerfall for Crystal Empire and Blind Guardian in 2002. The band also played at Wacken Festival.
Cedric Dupont replaced Sascha Gerstner, but also remained in his main band Symphorce. The band issued a live album called Life Invasion on April 19th, 2004 through SPV. It was recorded in Germany during the band's 2002 tour with Blind Guardian. The double-album featured the Taragon EP as a bonus.
Freedom Call was part of The Wacken Roadshow in 2004. The Germans picked March 21, 2005 as the release date for the next album, The Circle Of Life. A spring tour followed. Guitarist Cede parted ways with the band as a result of the man's time constraints. Ilker Ersin soon followed. Lars Rettkowitz joined in 2005. He hinted at acrimony within the band upon departure. Dimensions appeared in early 2007. The band played some European shows before getting ready to record a new album in late 2008 and early 2009. Downspirit was a new hard rock band formed by Cedric Dupont in early 2009. The band also recruited Domain bassist Steven Wussow as it prepared to record a debut. Freedom Call was working on a new album tentatively entitled Legend Of The Shadowking. The band and bassist Armin Donderer had parted ways and the band had recruited a new man called Samy Saemann. Exciter, Necrophobic, Freedom Call, Crashdiet and Udo were participating in a ship cruise called Sweden Rock Cruise departing Stockholm on October 8th, 2009! Freedom Call released a new album, Legend Of The Shadowking, on January 29th, 2010 through SPV/Steamhammer. In early 2010, Daniel Zimmermann left Freedom Call due to scheduling conflict with his other band, Gamma Ray, which was touring Japan in March of 2010.
Due on June 14th 2011 through SPV/Steamhammer, Live In Hellvetia, was Freedom Call’s live DVD and featured a set shot in Switzerland in late 2010. Freedom Call would release a new album, Land Of The Crimson Dawn, on February 24, 2012 in Germany through SPV/Steamhammer. The album contained 14 tracks. Klaus Sperling was now on drums. Freedom Call would release a compilation album, Ages Of Light, on April 26th, 2013 through SPV/Steamhammer. Freedom Call would release a new album, Beyond, on February 24th, 2014 through SPV/Steamhammer. The 14-song album was recorded at Separate Studios in Nuremberg and the band's own studio. It was produced by guitarist and singer Chris Bay and Stephan Ernst. Ersin was back. The band released a single, called Hammer Of The Gods, from its upcoming 2016 album Master Of Light. Freedom Call singer Chris Bay's first solo album, called Chasing The Sun, was out through Steamhammer/SPV in February 2018. Iced Earth conducted a European tour in January with support from Freedom Call and Metaprism. Francesco Ferraro joined in 2019. The M.E.T.A.L. Fest was a live record and DVD taped in 2022. The band was booked for Helloween’s Hello-feast in Slovakia opening for Rage and Helloween in August 2023.
FREEDOM CALL - CRYSTAL EMPIRE - SPV
Germany's Freedom Call is one of those bands in the great kingdom of heavy metal that deserves a bigger audience and recognition by virtue of this, its second album, the follow up to the band's debut Stairway to Fairyland. Up-beat and Teutonic speed metal surprises me out of the gates, flowing and weaving in the air as wave after wave permeates my kingdom crossing bands like Gamma Ray and Blind Guardian without ever cloning. Freedom Call employs keyboards. I wish they would abandon the habit; it gives the band an undeserved aura of pomp rock whereas they are in fact harbouring a potentially glorious and bombastic speed metal present and future. Tune-wise Freedom Call produces multitudes of instances where the music and, especially the vocals, lift up and transport one to another land; a land of honour and glory, alive with magic and enchantment. The guitars are clear and in tune and the smooth, while the drums tantivy and contribute all the metal power in the world. Vocal-wise Chris Bay has some of the strongest choruses ever sung. Not since the brilliance of Kai Hansen on those early Helloween gems has Metallian Towers been treated to vocals as accomplished as those on this record. Adding the final touch to an album that is all-around so gifted are the story line and the fantasy cover which takes me back to some 17 years ago when staring at covers of bands like Diamond Head or Battle Axe meant a journey into fantastic worlds. Crystal Empire is the complete package that will only elevate in status as word spreads throughout the metal kingdom. - Ali "The Metallian"
FREEDOM CALL- ETERNITY - SPV
Eternity is Freedom Call's third album and the continuation of the Taragon mythology introduced in the preceding albums. The cover looks to have suffered at the printers having turned out too dark in patches, but is true to the band's fantastical aspirations and wholly appropriate for the genre. Featuring Gamma Ray drummer Dan Zimmermann and the new ex-Symphorce guitarist Cede Dupont, the FC screamers (rounded out by singer guitarist Chris Bay and bassist Ilker Ersin) are a force to be reckoned with and are quickly climbing the stairway to fairyland. Fans, such as this writer, will note that Eternity maintains the exact same atmosphere and sound as its predecessors. One of the catchiest metal bands out there in the vast heavy metal kingdom, Eternity continues the sound with songs which are both glorious and uplifting. The disc kicks off with the mid-paced Metal Invasion which is just short of seven minutes in length and quickly establishes the FC sound. Then it's unto the equally-majestic Flying High and on to the thicker sounding Ages Of Power. The Spell begins with a sound effect akin to Genesis' Mama and is merely a short bridge into Bleeding Heart which is one of those Freedom Call slow songs that has turned out to be quite popish in nature. It would sound at home on the Xanadu soundtrack. Warriors is an anthemic sing-along with a faster pace and a refrain that flows well. The Eyes Of The World is faster and sounds very close to Helloween's Future World in vocals. Flame In The Night is another sure crowd-pleaser and, as is often the case with the quartet, pronounced with utmost clarity. Island Of Dreams is reminiscent of the Crystal Empire material. Turn Back Time ends the above average album with a ballad with the name Turn Back Time. The album is chock full of the Freedom Call pattern of the singer alternating with musicians kicking things into high gear and back. Not quite Crystal Empire, but that not being a surprise Eternity is a good album in its own right and certainly at the top of the Teutonic metal pole. Certainly an absence of the sustained fast material hurts the album, but Freedom Call remains a unique band with a voice all its own. Will someone hire these guys for an epic movie score?
FREEDOM CALL - THE CIRCLE OF LIFE - SPV
Freedom Call has essentially become the world's premier fantasy-oriented hard rock and heavy metal band with its last three albums. The Circle Of Life will only reinforce that reputation. The album is a good one and even better than 2002's Eternity. The band has accomplished this despite the addition of a keyboardist, which is usually a harbinger of weaker music. The album does not hit the same standards as 2000's Crystal Empire, but will nevertheless satisfy the band's fan-base and beyond. For one thing the boys are true to their sound. For another, the band's simplified approach features great arrangements and fantastic guitar solos. The keyboards are everywhere, but the album is also jammed with big metallic chords. The production somehow sees the guitars buried in favour of the vocals though, while the band marches through emotional songs like the title track with its great melody, Mother Earth with its superb Halford-ish riffing and Kings & Queens which begins like Judas Priest and ends like Queen - which is appropriate of course. There a couple of weaker songs on the disc as well, but nothing permanently damaging so go for it. - Ali "The Metallian"
FREEDOM CALL - DIMENSIONS - SPV
Freedom Call is back. The German power metal troopers have crossed a tumultuous period in the group’s tenure having seemingly successfully ditched a period of musical uncertainty to reach Dimensions. This album is mostly up-tempo, full of upbeat themes and ridden with fantasy. In short, this is both what Freedom Call is and what the band’s fans want.
Past a typically bombastic introduction a choir, a guy talking through his toothache and some 'baby talk' the band kicks into United Alliance and a self-referential “We are Freedom Call.” Mr. Evil is a fun song reminiscent (in title) of other recent German titles like Mrs. God (Helloween) and Dear Mr. Devil (Gun Barrel). Queen Of My World is groovier and begins with a bent led Zeppelin beat, although retains the band’s signature sounds, while Light Up The Sky has a Queen-ish/Savatagian rock opera vibe to it. Blackened Sun is strong, but not totally serious as is usual with Freedom Call - except for the suggestive lyrics. The title track is as strong with great guitars, but also features unneeded electronics unfortunately. Dimensions is the band’s best album since Crystal Empire and recommended. This is good news especially given the introduction of two new members here. - Ali “The Metallian”