Published on November 5th, 2016 | by Justin G.
Dragonforce: Killer Elite
It almost doesn’t seem like Dragonforce has been around long enough to have a “greatest hits” set, but the UK-based power metal band (and Guitar Hero sensation) has released a half-dozen albums since debuting in 2003. So a retrospective like the 2-disc (or 3-disc if you spring for the deluxe version) collection Killer Elite makes sense.
Killer Elite does a nice job covering Dragonforce’s career, giving fans highlights from each of their six albums as well as some live material. Of the 22 tracks included on Killer Elite, 3 are from 2003’s Valley of the Damned, 4 are from 2004’s Sonic Firestorm, 3 are from their breakout 2006 Inhuman Rampage, 3 are from 2008’s Ultra Beatdown, 2 are from the 2010 live album Twilight Dementia, 4 are from 2012’s The Power Within, 2 are from 2014’s Maximum Overload and one is from the 2015 live release In the Line of Fire…Larger Than Live. The songs aren’t in chronological order, which is a bit disappointing, but this set does paint a very good picture of what Dragonforce is all about. It’s an overload of ridiculously fast rhythms, intricate solos, cotton candy melodies and dramatic vocals.
The Killer Elite booklet is also worth mentioning, as it has a page devoted to each album, with the original artwork and notes from a band member on each release. It makes you appreciate the material that much more.
As noted earlier, there are a couple of different versions of Killer Elite out there. The standard 2-disc version gives you just the 22 audio tracks, while the 3-disc version comes in a gatefold digipack and includes a bonus DVD with all of the band’s promotional video clips. It’s a nice addition, given how much fun Dragonforce videos tend to be.
Killer Elite doesn’t offer any kind of b-sides or exclusive tracks, so there isn’t much here for the die-hard Dragonforce fans to bother with. It is, however, the perfect collection for those unfamiliar with the band. It’s also a very satisfying set for those who enjoy the band’s sound but don’t feel the need to own multiple (very similar-sounding) albums.
Summary: This great set may be all the DragonForce you need.