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Metal Law - Hellrider Award winner

Metal Law
Hellrider
by Gabriel “Svrtr” Zimmerman at 03 April 2017, 8:42 AM

I will just come right off the bat and say that today in store is a treat for fans of more traditional classic metal acts, and that is METAL LAW and their third studio album “Hellrider.” The eight year wait is over for people who were already fans, and this album is sure to have something in store for many others who have not previously known the band. While not the most technically complex, this band has a great strong point in the form of great guitar riffs and song progression, combined with a solid beat throughout and a tempo that perfectly matches the genre. Without further ado, I’ll just dive right in.

As you can guess from the name, “Prelude” is just that and so the album properly opens with “Masquerade”. As I said before, this song exemplifies the band’s angle and features some great and catchy riffs that match the tempo of the song, which is also perfect for the song. With great overall progression, solid beats and great riffs throughout, and a strong guitar solo (even if not the most technically complex) the song does very well to establish what to expect from the album. Following this is the namesake of the album “Hellrider”, which opens with a very sudden and abrupt arpeggio that starts as soon as it ends, and as soon as it ends the song becomes a notch slower and takes on a much more gradual tune. The focus here seems to be far more on the vocals and lyricism, which are good by all accounts, though a tad bit stereotypical it can be said. For much of the song, at least the first two choruses and verses, the song is has a gradual beat. However, once it comes to the guitar solo you get blasted with an impressive showmanship of technicality, the likes of which persists into the bridge for the lead guitar. While the drums and rhythm guitar became faster too during the solo, the drums and rhythm guitar return to their original tempo from the rest of the song. The show of technicality was good, and while the song as a whole was good my only complaint is the fact that it was slower and showed the impressive riffs at the beginning and solo.

Personally, I would have preferred to see it throughout for a faster beat and more complex riffs, but being a personal opinion it does not detract from the song. The next song is “Thundergod”, which you can expect to be about Thor. However, this song returns to the more original style from the first song. Featuring a great build up that “Buzzes like crackling electricity in the air”, and pardon the terrible joke, the song again features some amazing riffs and a great tempo. Without a doubt, my favorite parts are the solo and the riff that can be heard at the beginning of the song after the build-up and between the stretches of singing. While simple, the riff does well to reach and grab you, and the guitar solos in this album in general are almost always superb for the genre.

Next up is “This Dream” and “Lord of Evil”, with the first being an intro for the latter. I will say, one thing I am not a fan of in the first is the arbitrary change between more guttural vocals back to cleans. However, the buildup in it is still strong nonetheless, and the bass heavy focus is well done here. In the latter, as usual and as you can guess I have to praise the riffs here. Funnily enough here though, the solo is a bit more lax here than in the other songs, at least in the first part as it is somewhat broken up into two parts. What I love most about it is the progression though. A solo can be as complex as you want but if it does not flow well and does not have musical sense to it, it will just sound disharmonious and cause people to have an aversion to it. METAL LAW has an extremely strong capability to create great progression throughout their songs and solos/riffs alike and that is what makes the guitar work so likeable.

For this next song, I will preface it saying this song by far had my favorite solo on the track. “Hellride of Steel” is an interesting one. As “Hellrider” did, this track has a heavier focus on the lyrics than on the instruments during the verses and chorus, and as such it has a more gradual tempo on the album. Yet again too, the solos are incredibly impressive and have a great tune, and as I said this track had my favorite. The solo does extremely well to draw your attention towards it without forcing itself to be the most noticeable thing by shoving it down your throat. A great progression and a tune that suits the song, if you have to listen to one song for the solo it is undoubtedly this song. Maybe the band just likes to have a specific song structure and tune for songs that have any reference to the term hellride in their title.  The last song I will talk about is the song “In Metal We Trust”, because I feel like I almost have an obligation to mention this song. What this song is almost purely about is a camaraderie among metalheads to this genre we have spent so much time listening to and the culture surrounding it that we have become a part of, often finding brotherhood among anyone who you see listens to metal (barring the metal elitists though). Sounding almost like the song “Amon Amarth” by AMON AMARTH from their album Once Sent From the Golden Hall in tempo and giving a similar vibe, I find the song very easy to enjoy for the arpeggio riffs and the lyricism. The lyricism does especially seem to help me to enjoy the song, and while again not the most technically complex on the album the song does have great progression.

As you can guess, METAL LAW features some of the best song, riff, and solo progression I have ever reviewed. I would highly recommend this band to anyone really, as this band is almost sure to have songs in store that people who are fans of any subgenre will at least enjoy or admire. Though I had not heard of this band before, to all people who were already fans go get this album as soon as you can as the 8 year wait seemed to have been worth it. Overall a great band with great guitar capabilities and performances.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Prelude
2. Masquerade
3. Hellrider
4. Thundergod
5. This Dream (Intro)
6. Lord Of Evil
7. Hellrider of Steel
8. The Liar
9. In Metal We Trust
10. Power and Glory
11. Invader
12. Crusader of Light
Lineup:
Karsten Degling - Vocals, Guitar
Maximilian Schulz - Drums
Mario Bergfelder - Guitar
Gino Cutolo - Bass
Record Label: Metal On Metal Records
     


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Edited 09 July 2020
 

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