Company: Frontiers Release: 2012 Genre: Power Reviewer: EC
All things we love about German heavy metal
Sinner and Scheepers have worked the clock for fourteen years making this Primal Fear machine. Scheepers alone is approaching icon status considering his merit and esteemed value to the whole German efficiency. Take into consideration his early 80s work with Tyran Pace, then the pioneer efforts with Gamma Ray and now Primal Fear for the last fourteen years. The man has no reason to stop now and even broadened the horizon with a solo effort last year. Combine his fortitude with the backbreaking work ethic of Mat Sinner and these two could be as important to Germany as Dickinson and Biff is to the UK.
"Unbreakable" is record nine for the Fear gang and comes off the band's run in the US as well as the aforementioned Scheepers solo effort and one blockbuster album last year from Sinner. The band carries the momentum with this new record, a polished harbinger of all things we love about German heavy metal...Accept riffs, Scorpions hooks and the classy power metal staple of early Helloween. This marks the first for new guitarist Alex Beyrodt, replacing the long running guitarist Henny Wolter. This is also the third album for the band with partner Frontiers Records.
The band released leadoff single "Bad Guys Wear Black" before the record release and it is a good indication of where the album lies...huge anthems with sing along chorus bites and that well played traditional soundtrack that reverberates on each and every cut. Check out opener "Strike" for the best of the band since "Suicide And Mania" in 2004. The band plays well off the quick pace, evident on speedster "Give 'Em He'll" and older styled track "Conviction". I love the groovy bash of "Blaze Of Glory" and the post-apocalyptic "And There Was Silence".
My faults lie in the wimpy ballads...and man are they clunkers. See two of them in "When Angels Die" and "Born Again" and throw in that symphonic element at the beginning of the album (and misplaced in the middle of "Marching Again" and this really drops my score. This sort of writing led to the downfall of the band on "Seven Seals" (probably got them off Nuclear Blast) and "New Religion".
Few bands can stand strong after nine outings and Primal Fear are proof in the pudding that good work ethics and constant touring will improve a band's longevity. Cheers to the band for holding the metal flame and not being burned.
About this Writer: Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has served as senior editor for MaximumMetal.com for nearly 10 years and is the author of the heavy metal book series--Denim & Letters. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia.
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