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Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Reviews: Primordial, Lonewolf, Temperance (Reviews By Stief)

Primordial: Where Greater Men Have Fallen (Metal Blade)

The first album from the band in 7 years, Primordial's Where Greater Men Have Fallen is a great return. Title track and album opener Where Greater Men... immediately grabs you and doesn't let go, with pounding drums and grinding guitars. Alan Averill or Nemtheanga's voice does take some getting used to if you haven't listened before, but generally, fits well with the distorted guitars and heavy bass that come with the territory of black/extreme metal. The album is relentless in its heaviness, Babel's Tower and Come The Flood are both slow and heavy before The Seed Of Tyrants rips you right back up again. There are some great riffs throughout and Primordial show their Irish roots in nearly every song, especially Born To Night, which includes a heavy, almost folk-like 4 minute intro before getting into the song. Album closer Wield Lightning To Split The Sun is just as heavy as the rest of the album, the chanting of the band reminiscent of later-era Rotting Christ. Founding members Ciáran MacUiliam and Pól MacAmhlaigh (on guitars and bass respectively) are supported by Simon Ó Laoghaire on drums and Micheál Ó Floinn on guitars. A brutal and heavy album throughout. 7/10

Lonewolf: Cult Of Steel (Massacre)

There's something about European power metal bands with wolf-based names that just seems to capture me. Lonewolf is no exception with Cult Of Steel, their follow up to last year's The Fourth And Final Horseman. Album opener Cult Of Steel builds up with an eastern-style sound, before breaking into fast paced guitars and heavy drums. Lonewolf pretty much keep the speed throughout the entire album with solos galore and the lyrics are basic power metal fare, promoting the religion of heavy metal and (as the name would imply) wolf-related subjects, Werewolf Rebellion and The Grey Wolves being prime examples. Both Funeral Pyre and Mysterium Fidei are highlights of the album, breaking away from the quicker pace of the rest of the album for a heavier, slightly slower sound. Lead singer Jens Börner's voice is a mix between Powerwolf's Attilla Dorn and a less gravelly Lemmy, which, when combined with the guitar of Alex Hilbert, the bass of Rikki Mannhard and Antoine Bussière's drums give a great sound. Overall a great album with some brilliant music 8/10

Temperance: Temperance (Scarlet)

The first full release from Italy's Temperance, their self titled album does not disappoint. The opening track Tell Me is an uplifting track with soaring vocals from lead singer Chiara and awesome riffs from Marco, who provides the backing vocals and growls, as well as some of the clean vocals on songs such as Breathe and Stronger. While it would be easy to compare Temperance with other female fronted symphonic bands, I don't think it would do them justice. The band seem to mix the clean vocals with growls perfectly, neither seeming too much at any given time. The solos are great too, not taking up too much of the song, but providing a great bridge between the verses. The album has something for pretty much everyone; from  in the form of Stronger, more dramatic songs like Lotus and The Fourth Season. A personal favourite is To Be With You which feels like a love song to the fans and how it feels how to be a fan of a band. The special edition has a surprising addition with a cover of Christina Perri's A Thousand Years, which seems to fit extremely well with the band's vocal style. With a new album out early next year, this is a band to look out for. 9/10

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