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Hammerfall - Infected

by Fede "FedeRock" Taich at 02 June 2011, 9:34 AM

If you love Heavy Metal and banging your head like you are back in 1985, you probably know HAMMERFALL. This Swedish Metal Gods have been around since 1993 but even though they came out into recognition in the mid nineties, they have been keeping the 80s spirit to the side of their material constantly. "Infected", their new studio effort, is in my opinion a mixture of all that was made on their carrier. From the Power Metal ballads to the speedy Metal stuff, this album has it all.

The album starts with “Patient Zero”, an epic song that begins with a great intro and continues with rhythm guitars and great lead licks. The second song “B.Y.H” (Bang Your Head) is a typical fast tempo HAMMERFALL song that is a kind of a tribute to the 80s Metal scene and music. This one has a great chorus and very powerful riffs. “Send Me A Sign” is the album's power ballad that seems to be a sort of the same formula as on the great hit “Glory To The Brave”. However, from my end it’s not really as good and sounds more like a pop song. That is something that has been battering me for a while in HAMMERFALL's career. On the last couple of albums, especially when they really tried to go more mainstream, it has been proven that mainstream and traditional Heavy Metal don’t really go together and when they do, one of the two sides gets hurt, in this case it is the Metal side .

HAMMERFALL of 2011 sounds very powerful very well produced, every single detail has been taken to thought and that is something that to me, in this style of music, takes a little from it. Even though there are some great riffs on the album like on the song “I Refuse”, there are very fast riffages that seemed to be taken over by some of the more modern mainstream styles of arrangements.

The thing is that the songs are good, but are over produced and also very mixed between the old and great HAMMERFALL and the new more Mainstream HAMMERFALL that seems to try, with all their power, to get on to the charts. I can’t really blame them because it’s a choice that many Metal bands has been making in order to succeed in the music business but I do believe that a traditional Heavy Metal band should try at least to stay traditional. Sadly that HAMMERFALL didn't on this one.

Besides the amazing songs, the members are absolutely amazing!  Especially Pontus's guitar work which was great. As for the sound, it just sounds huge. Listening to it seemed to emulate a HAMMERFALL show. The thing is that if I’m going to see HAMMERFALL I wouldn't have wanted to listen to any one of these songs and preferred on listening to the good old classics but only time will tell. Maybe in 10 years this album will have some classics as well.

In conclusion if you like big Metal sounds, new productions and Heavy Metal, you’ll like this one, for the HAMMERFALL fans among us, it’s a good record but nothing more.

3 Star Rating

1. Patient Zero
2. B.Y.H (Bang Your Head)
3. One More Time
4. The Outlaw
5. Send Me A Sign (Pokolgep cover)
6. Dia De Los Muertos
7. I Refuse
8. 666 - The Enemy Within
9. Immortalized
10 .Redemption 
Joacim Cans- Vocals
Oscar Dronjak- Guitar
Pontus Norgren- Guitar
Fredrik Larsson- Bass
Anders Johanson- Drums
Record Label: Nuclear Blast Records


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