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Battlesword - Towards the Unknown Award winner

Towards the Unknown
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 27 October 2022, 3:10 PM

As time passes by, some modern Metal genres are becoming Old School ones without anyone noticing. As an example, today is becoming common to call Melodic Death Metal acts with some features as Old School Melodic Death Metal’ without problems. They’re the ones that follow a tendency similar to that one shown on the early works of DARK TRANQUILLITY, IN FLAMES, AT THE GATES and EDGE OF SANITY. And the work of the German quintet BATTLESWORD follows such way, as can be clearly heard on “Towards the Unknown”.

The band follows a tendency that is nearer of what bands as AMON AMARTH plays (and the band has some similarities with the Swedish quintet as well), or in other words: it’s brutal and aggressive as a traditional Death Metal act, just using melodies to shape their musical efforts. It’s obvious that it’s nothing new at all, but the band plays things in their own way, with some moments bearing a very good set of arrangements (as can be heard on “To Become the Wolf”), energy in a level that can make the VU meter blow up, and always with good taste. It’s really a very good release, indeed. The album was recorded and produced by the hands of Michael “Freio” Haas, and the mastering was done by Dan Swanö. All to keep things in a Melodic Death Metal traditional form, with abrasive and aggressive tunes that boosts the brutality, but with the right level of definition to allow the fans to absorb the songs without problems.

The album bears 9 songs and 3 bonus tracks, being all of them fine pieces of Melodic Death Metal in its classic format. But “The Awakening” (excellent sharp melodic guitar riffs that guides the instrumental parts), “To Become the Wolf” (another excellent moment of the guitars, but with bass guitar and drums creating an ample set of rhythmic arrangements to support the song), “The Shores of I” (some Viking Death Metal parts can be heard, similar to AMON AMARTH on its early days, and what good grunts), and “Backstabber” are the better ones for a first ride on this album. But pay attention to the remastered versions of “There Will Be Blood”, “Fire and Storm” and “The 13th Black Crusade” as well.

The band can mature a bit more, but “Towards the Unknown” is a very good release, and BATTLESWORD deserves applause.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Departure
2. The Awakening
3. To Become the Wolf
4. Terra Combusta
5. The Shores of I
6. Hound of Hades
7. Backstabber
8. There Will Be Blood
9. Fire and Storm
10. The 13th Black Crusade
Axel - Vocals
Erik - Guitars
Lars - Guitars
Ben - Bass
Andreas - Drums
Record Label: MDD Records


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