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Raven
Walk Through Fire

Company: King Records
Release: 2009
Genre: NWOBHM, Hard Rock
Reviewer: EC

  • Steal, download or import it!



  • "Hit me for six, I'm comin' back around"
    "Like a Bulldozer I'm gonna knock you down!"

    Those meaningful lyrics to Raven's "Bulldozer" is an appropriate description of "Walk Through Fire". Where in the Hell did Raven get this kind of youthful momentum!?! I had some doubts upon aquisition (download...see below distro comments) of this brand new studio release from the UK vets. What are the Gallagher brothers now? 50? 60? 70? On this metallic masterpiece the NWOBHM pioneers have crafted THE BEST ALBUM OF THEIR CAREER! Remember, Raven released their first record in 1981. They were at the center of the NWOBHM movement, at one time even taking out a young bunch of no names called Metallica for a string of curtain jerking. 28 years later and Raven absolutely obliterates their previous efforts and provides ample rock and roll glory in route to showing up today's chart toppers. This is the group's first album since the lackluster "One For All" in 2000 and the first damn album of Raven's career to have NO DISTRIBUTION IN EUROPE OR NORTH AMERICA. This is like a real life Fozzy joke, with the band releasing a monsterous achievement on the only label they could find--King Records in Japan. What a sorry state of affairs when I can find a shitty album like Chickenfoot at grocery stores and gas stations across the universe but a real solid opus fails to make it out of the far East. Damn!

    Raven hits on all strides through this 15 cut monster. Mark Gallagher is an axe maniac here, piling leads on top of leads with plenty of speed and fury. It isn't all fast though, with the group nailing some classic hard rock numbers. At times Raven sounds like 1981 with the furious NWOBHM sound and at other moments they pick up a bit of loose fun found around their mid-era. If you like it fast, tight and precise crank up "Against The Grain", "Breaking You Down", "Grip" and "Attitude". For a more meaty hard rock vibe choose "Long Day's Journey", "Hard Road" and "Under Your Radar". The commercial guitar tone dominates "Trainwreck" while the band shows some crushing heavy groove on "Bulldozer". The group even fire off a 6:00 dynamic structure with vocals that don't kick in until the 2:30 mark. This bad boy finishes off with a scorching cover of Montrose's "Space Station #5".

    The recording of the album took place at Assembly Line Studios in Virginia. The watchful eye for the even was Kevin 131, producer/mixer of bands like Deceased and Project: Failing Flesh. The production is extremely crisp and polished with a sound that is almost similar in style to Krokus' legendary "Headhunter". Kevin gets the best out of these bands and he really fired up Raven.

    On an ending note, this is THE BEST ALBUM OF 2009. Steal, download or import it! Crank the Hell out of it! This is blue collar working man's metal as honest as it can get.


    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.

    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise 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.



    ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: RAVEN
    CD
    TITLE BAND
    DOR
    REVIEWER DATE
    Walk Through FireRaven
    2009
    Eric Compton7/2/2009


    ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: RAVEN

    No Summary reviews currently exist for them.


    ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: RAVEN
    INTERVIEW BAND INTERVIEWER DATE
    John GallagherRavenVinaya11/21/2009


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