Maximum Metal Rating Legend
5 Excellent - Masterpiece. A classic.
4.5-4 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a lacking.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio.
2.5-2 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors.
1.5-1 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible - Waste of your life and time.

Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.
Band
Primal Fear
Title
Delivering The Black
Type
LP/EP
Company
Frontiers
YOR
2014
Style
Power
2/20/2014 - Review by: Vinaya Saksena

Primal Fear
Delivering The Black

Company: Frontiers
Release: 2014
Genre: Power
Reviewer: Vinaya

  • All-guns-blazing, Priest-style metal



  • If you're a fan of traditional, all-guns-blazing, Priest-style metal, this is a pretty fine way to start the year. Assuming you're familiar with the previous works of German metal merchants Primal Fear, you should pretty much know already if this release is for you. If you're looking for the next album that will redefine the boundaries of heavy metal, this ain't it. But for sheer old-school metal power and glory, it's hard to beat tracks like this album's opening duo of "King For A Day" and "Rebel Faction."

    Personally, I've been watching Primal Fear's career since shortly after the band's eponymous 1998 debut album, and really became a full-on fan after seeing their first-ever U.S. gig in support of their third album, "Nuclear Fire" (and interviewing vocalist Ralf Scheepers for my college's radio station). The next album, "Black Sun," was even better, and "Devil's Ground" saw the band's songwriting abilities grow noticeably. After that, my interest waned somewhat, as I found subsequent releases varying somewhat in quality while not really offering any strong new ideas. The band's attempts at new directions during this period, in my opinion, often fell flat (glaring exceptions being mellower tracks like "In Memory" and "Fighting the Darkness"). Their 2009 release "16.6 (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead)" was an improvement, despite its long-winded and cheesy title; a welcome bounce back in terms of both style and quality. If anything, that album seemed to prove that Primal Fear function best when they're not trying to reinvent the wheel, and certainly when they're not trying to sound "current." The next album, "Unbreakable," was decent but did not really make a lasting impression on me. "Delivering the Black" is basically more of the same, but scores a bit higher than "Unbreakable" in the songwriting department. If one cares to make distinctions like this between Primal Fear albums (which, let's face it, aren't all that different from one another at the end of the day), I'd say this one reminds me a bit of their second album, "Jaws of Death," in that it's polished, cleanly executed and metal to the core (of course) without going over the top in terms of speed and intensity like they would occasionally do starting with the "Nuclear Fire" album. (Remember "Back From Hell" anyone? None of that here. Only closing cut "Inseminoid" even comes close.)

    One thing I have always liked about Primal Fear's albums is the dual lead guitar interplay. Unfortunately, Primal Fear's awesome two-guitar tandem has been fraught with personnel changes, particularly since "Black Sun." Thankfully, this album marks the second consecutive album for the pairing of Magnus Karlsson and Alex Beyrodt. Personally, I enjoyed the albums with the fleet-fingered Stefan Leibing (paired with either Tom Naumann or Henny Wolter) the best, although all of their albums feature stunning solos, and "Delivering the Black" is no exception. Personally, I don't find the solos on this album to be quite as memorable as on some of their past albums. (I mean, there's nothing like the unforgettable, jaw-dropping "Nuclear Fire" solo section, the "Hotel California" of Primal Fear lead breaks.) But if you want technically flawless solo tradeoffs, there are still plenty of them on this album, especially on the epic "One Night in December"- a song which approaches ten minutes in length! So basically, this album is Primal Fear as trad metal songsmiths, not Primal Fear as guitar-flaunting, borderline-speed metal maniacs. So, like I said, if you've heard them before, and you have even the foggiest idea what I'm rambling about, you should know by now whether or not you need this. Note: In addition to the usual CD, vinyl and digital download versions, "Delivering the Black" is available not only as a Deluxe Edition (CD with bonus tracks, plus DVD with video clips and "making of" feature), but also a "Collectors Deluxe Edition" featuring all of the "Deluxe Edition" stuff, plus (gasp!)... a sculpture of the band's ever-present eagle mascot--made of metal, of course!


    1/1/2014 - Review by: Eric Compton

    Primal Fear
    Delivering The Black

    Company: Frontiers
    Release: 2014
    Genre: Power
    Reviewer: EC

  • German engineering



  • These Germans consistently receive support or criticism for maintaining the same essential sound since 1998. Singer Ralf Scheepers is the embodiment of the "Painkiller" Halford with his mid to high vocal range. Earlier in their career the group focused energy and efforts on solidifying German engineering to entice fans of Accept, Victory and Scorpions. That method worked, creating longevity and legacy through ten hard hitting records that placed the band on every shore. "Delivering The Black" is yet another testament of this band's dedication and work ethic. The group partnered with Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Mercenary) for the mix and master, a marriage that expands their traditional offering. Under Hansen's treatment there is more emphasis on a faster rhythm that triggers double bass. As always Scheepers is in top form but this mix reduces his vocals slightly in the mix to allow more clarity from the band. This formula is most evident on "Rebel Faction", a track that utilizes triggered double bass similar to some extreme acts. Another highlight is lead single "When Death Comes Knocking" with its effective '80s like hook. "Road To Asylum" and "Delivering The Black" are quicker and lean heavily on frequent power metal strokes. The song selection, production and continued support from Frontiers are contributing factors to the success of this record. Building on that momentum is a worldwide tour that will include a rare jaunt in North America.

    Note - The deluxe edition provides three bonus songs and a DVD. The Japanese edition gives you four bonus tracks.


    • 2 :REVIEW COUNT
      4.25 :AVE RATING

    ALL REVIEWS FOR: PRIMAL FEAR
    TITLE
    DOR
    COMPANY
    REVIEWER DATE MADE RATING
    16.6 (BTDKYD)
    2009
    Frontiers
    Raising Iron9/18/2009
    2.5
    Apocalypse
    2018
    Frontiers
    Eric Compton9/13/2018
    4
    Best of Fear
    2017
    Frontiers
    Eric Compton11/10/2017
    4.5
    Delivering The Black
    2014
    Frontiers
    Eric Compton1/1/2014
    4.5
    Delivering The Black
    2014
    Frontiers
    Vinaya Saksena2/20/2014
    4
    Devilís Ground
    2004
    Nuclear Blast
    Anthony Burke2/20/2004
    -
    Devil's Ground
    2004
    Nuclear Blast
    Eric Compton3/3/2004
    -
    History Of Fear DVD
    2004
    Nuclear Blast
    Eric Compton3/3/2004
    -
    Live In The U.S.A
    2010
    Frontiers
    Chris Kincaid8/6/2010
    5
    Nuclear Fire
    2001
    Nuclear Blast
    Vinaya Saksena4/5/2004
    -
    Rulebreaker
    2016
    Frontiers
    Eric Compton2/4/2016
    4
    Seven Seals
    2005
    Nuclear Blast
    Stygian Steel10/14/2005
    -
    Unbreakable
    2011
    Frontiers
    Chris Kincaid1/3/2012
    4
    Unbreakable
    2011
    Frontiers
    Eric Compton1/30/2012
    4

    ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: PRIMAL FEAR
    INTERVIEW INTERVIEWER DATE TAGLINE


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