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Pectora - Untaken

by Sean McGuirk at 28 May 2019, 7:33 AM

PECTORA claims to be the next savior in a long history of hard-hitting Danish melodic hard rock and heavy metal, alongside bands like KING DIAMONDPRETTY MAIDSVOLBEAT and RAUNCHY. The band plays a mixture of old school and new school melodic metal, capturing well that period in the early-90’s when the Big Four were going mainstream. Singer Kenneth Steen Jacobsen sounds a lot like the child of Chuck Billy and James Hetfield and the rest of the band are very adept at creating some punchy melodic heaviness. They are all over the place image-wise: the dark wintry cover gives a feeling of Pagan Black Metal more than anything contained on this record, while the logo and name feels like it should be a Power Metal band from Chile. The truth is nothing close to being that complicated, as the eight songs on this record are straight-up rockers.

Both the title track opener, with its numerous tom fills and “oh-oh-ohhh”section, and “Collide,” with its rollicking bass lines and infectious chorus, give off distinct IRON MAIDEN or SAXON vibes. While Mr. Jacobsen is nowhere near as talented a singer as Bruce Dickinson, he puts in a workmanlike effort, never trying to reach beyond his limits. His steak-and-potatoes vocals make “Haunted Memory” sound like a NICKELBACK song, however, rather than the pounding ACCEPT-style banger that it should be. “The Fare” is an emotional tune that is embellished by some backing vocals in the right spots. It’s an old-fashioned radio-friendly feel, but that’s what these guys are going for after all.

Running Out Of Days” has a groove metal edge to it, but ultimately revolves around one rhythmic idea that is repeated at infinitum. At six minutes on average, the songs tend to get long in the tooth for not much of a decent reason, but there are some nice extended bridges like on the up-tempo “Unkindled Flame.” It’s these moments when the band really gels, where the album feels the most alive. But then you get a song like “No Regrets,” which is a standard 90’s METALLICA rocker that doesn’t deliver the chorus that the title promises. There is however a nifty chorus on “The Arrival,” but instead of going full-on experimental with the seven-minute track, the band retreats back into standard palm-muted grooves any chance it gets. The outro is more impressive, with some interesting melodic counterpoint in the closing solo.

Overall, these guys aren’t out there trying to start the next trend; they’re playing the heavy music they love with a clear passion. If they do want to be considered in the same breath as those Danish greats one day, they’ll have to do some experimenting. In the meantime, what we have here is some decent, uncomplicated, beer-drinking music. There’s always room for that.

Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Memorability: 5
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Untaken
2. Collide
3. Haunted Memory
4. The Fare
5. Running Out Of Days
6. Unkindled Flame
7. No Regrets
8. The Arrival
Kenneth Steen Jacobsen - Vocals
Morten Nielsen - Guitar
Søren Weiss Kristiansen - Guitar, Backing Vocals
Laurids Münier - Bass
Nicolas Kraunsøe Frandsen - Drums, Backing Vocals
Record Label: Mighty Music


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