I am a fan of power metal. The soaring vocals, the upbeat sing-along choruses, the classically-influenced melodies and rhythyms, the technical musicianship. I find myself recommending power metal to anyone new to metal because it's a very accessible style and varied enough to point people into other sub-genres they may enjoy.
If you are unsure of what power metal is there's a wikipedia page:
I will begin the thread with the forefathers of power metal Iron Maiden.
Now... maiden isn't often considered to be power metal since they technically fall under the New Wave of British Heavy Metal subgenre (which has very little to do with actual sound considering everything from Def Leppard to Motorhead to Iron Maiden fit into that description). But it is no secret that Iron Maiden was probably the biggest influence on how Power Metal was to sound, the melodic riffs, the galloping rhythym, Bruce's soaring vocals. All of this screams of Power Metal (not to mention that most Power Metal musicians cite Maiden as a huge influence).
So I will continue this thread with some more of my favorites as I feel like putting them up here (got a few in mind already). Feel free to suggest bands, comment, like, criticize, etc. and point people who you think will enjoy some power metal in the direction of this thread.
Dragonforce is THE band that got me into metal (thank God I bought Guitar Hero III) and I really think they're a great metal band, with some really talented musicians.
[I post this because is from the first album, not many people knows it and has everything a true power metal song should have in my opininon]
Regarding the genre overall I think is really underrated and considered filled too much with technique so it looses on the "sentimental" aspect. WRONG! Not only because I'm a fan of the genre but I think is totally able to convey emotions to the audience and the fast solos and drumbeat are a soo sweet treat to ignore (especially for a guitarist!).
So continuing this thread I'm going to post one of my favorite bands; Angra. They technically fall under progressive/power metal and their sound stands out easily in a crowd of generic power metal bands.
A moderately popular band as far as power metal is concerned, Angra employs a lot of exotic sounding riffs as well as unique backbeats, beat counts, in addition to amazing technicality that doesn't become robotic like some other music (Yngwie comes to mind).
I shall post a song from each of their studio albums to illustrate how they've developed as a band (tough to pick just one from each album though)
Title track off the first album Angel's Cry
Their second album (my least favorite by them) has 2 songs I really enjoy: Nothing to Say, and Z.I.T.O.
From the album Fireworks:
Rebirth, their fourth album is a very strong showing, I recommend taking a look at the songs in here some of my favorites for sure and quite varied to boot.
Temple of Shadows, A concept album that has quite a few guest appearances by some power metal heavyweights. This one has Kai Hansen on vocals:
Aurora Consourgens, another great album by them imo. Too many songs to list, but here's one anyway:
Aqua, this album has a few good songs on there this song is probably my favorite out of the bunch offered on this one though:
And the opening track off their latest album Secret Garden that is the first album they have done with Fabio Lione of Rhapsody of Fire fame on vocals (along with a few guest singers). A great all around concept album with some fun songs, this one is just the one I picked (though I debated putting Perfect Symmetry or Black Hearted Soul here instead).
These titans of Symphonic Power Metal hail from Italy. An interesting tidbit is all of their lyrics from '97 to 2011 are a contiguous story written by former guitarist Luca Turilli. They employ extremely heavy classical influence and a variety of vocals. Most songs are in English, with some in Italian, and a few employing multiple languages.
A smaller selection since I'm pressed for time today:
The mighty ride of the firelord
Agony is my name
Reign of terror
Tempesta Di Fuoco
The band had a major split (on good terms) in 2011 where Luca Turilli and bassist Patrice Guers left to have more creative freedom as Luca Turilli's Rhapsody which is often considered to be the spiritual successor to Rhapsody of Fire after the From Chaos to Eternity album.
I recently started listening to Alestorm. I love how they stick to a nautical and pirate theme. They are not overly serious nor are they overly silly.
"Over the Seas" has the feeling of Power Metal:
"Wenches and Mead" is a song that I think every adventurer can get behind:
Lastly, one more song to present Alestorm:
These are by no means their best nor worst songs, just a collection to show their talent. They have four albums, and each is great. Obviously, I am biased in this recommendation, but I really like Alestorm.