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Blacksmith Legacy – Battalions of the Northern Realm Award winner

Blacksmith Legacy
Battalions of the Northern Realm
by John Paul Romero at 03 February 2020, 8:51 PM

Coming from our remaining back logs for the end of 2019 is another heavy metal album from the Swede quintet BLACKSMITH LEGACY. This is their first album six years after their debut “Let the Game Begin,” which was released in 2013. When you think of classic heavy power metal, you think of the likes of HAMMERFALL, ACCEPT, MANOWAR, etc. Although there are clear semblances of HAMMERFALL in BLACKSMITH LEGACY, this particular release called “Battalions of the Northern Realm” traces its influences from ACCEPT and JUDAS PRIEST more than anything else – so there goes one of your hints.

Going to the album itself – it contains 12 tracks, including an instrumental intro “March of the Titans,” and consumes a total of 54 minutes. Ruthlessly, the game begins with the crusade vibe put on by the first song “Battalions of the Northern Realm” with its infectious rhythm sections and catchy choruses. And then on comes “Blacksmith Legacy” with the attitude of true Swedish steel with its epicness and heaviness à la HAMMERFALL.

Adding to the dynamics are the tracks “Arms of Fate” and “All Stars in Heaven,” which are basically the slower, but heavier, tracks in the album. “All Stars in Heaven” is the unrivaled pinnacle of the album – having the best solos, catchiest tunes, and most epic atmosphere – which makes for a perfect anthem that the audience can sing along to during live shows. “Arms of Fate” is one of those songs that will start slowly and gently before blasting right into your face. Imprints of vintage DIAMOND HEAD and IRON MAIDEN are all over the place, and it’s such a pleasure to hear these kinds of tunes on a modern production.

Closing the album is “Battalions Hymn.” Here, they went full-on HAMMERFALL mode with a touch of DREAM EVIL and RIOT. Such an energetic fist-pumping song is the perfect way to close things out with its positivity matched with a slightly party(ish) vibe – that kind of song you actually finish your set with.

All that having said, it is easy to assume that this album is among the diamonds in the rough you might have missed last year. It might not have the best guitar solos ever, but its overall substance will not make you look for more because it is strong for what it is – a serving of true heavy metal with classic sound infused with modern styles. Recommended for fans of ACCEPT, HAMMERFALL, DIAMOND HEAD, DREAM EVIL, SAXON, MANOWAR, IRON MAIDEN and JUDAS PRIEST. You will not be disappointed!

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

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. March of the Titans
2. Battalions of the Northern Realm
3. Blacksmith Legacy
4. Far From the Light
5. Demolition Man
6. Arms of Fate
7. All Stars in Heaven
8. Burn Down in Hell
9. Information Overload
10. Self Esteem Machine
11. Battalions Hymn
12. Arms of Fate (Acoustic Version)
Lineup:
Torgil Sturesson – Drums
Martin Sturesson – Guitars
Claes Karlsson – Guitars
Mike Noberg ­– Vocals
Gustav Bronelius – Bass
Record Label: Independent
     


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Edited 25 September 2020
 

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