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Primal Fear - Primal Fear (Reissue) Award winner

Primal Fear
Primal Fear (Reissue)
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 14 September 2022, 1:24 PM

Once upon a time…

Ralf Scheepers, singer of GAMMA RAY, left the band to try an audition to become the new JUDAS PRIEST singer. But his try was in vain, and his former band kept on without him. His friendship with Mat Sinner (bass player of SINNER) and Tom Naumann (the guitarist of SINNER) got along and created PRIMAL FEAR in the year oh 1997 (and the bad tongues into Metal and gossip hunters said that it was a consolation prize created by Mat and Tom for Ralf). And “Primal Fear” became one of the best sailing debuts on German Metal scene on 1998. And here is a remastered deluxe version of it for the fans.

Sorry for the fans that try to keep the band as doing the same thing during its 25 years career, but “Primal Fear” isn’t a Power Metal release, but a classic German Heavy Metal album (in the vein of ACCEPT during “Breaker” and “Restless and Wild” era) with some JUDAS PRIEST touches (what’s impossible to deny due the historical importance and universal influence of the English quintet), plenty of catchy melodies and remarkable choruses. Of course, it doesn’t present a new revolution on Metal music on those days, but as HAMMERFALL, they were just bringing back the old and good form of the 80’s with a new energy. And this new version is really depicts the valuable work of the back then quartet. The production of “Primal Fear” was done by Mat, Tom and Ralf, with sound engineering done by Achim Köhler. And the album sounds aggressive, melodic and clean, a trademark sonority used by many German Metal bands. And this remastering gave a shine to the album’s songs, an update that is really welcome. And remembering: Kai Hansen on the guitars on “Formula One”, “Dollars” and “Speedking”, and Frank Rössler on additional keyboards are the guests on the album.

Dealing with an album with the perspective of 25 years after its release (it’s near of reaching such age, you know) is easier than on its original time. But time didn’t erode the value of songs as “Chainbreaker” (the scent of ACCEPT influences is clear, with excellent vocals and catchy melodies), the heavy crush weight unleashed on “Promised Land” (it’s not technically complicated, and full of accessible touches, with an excellent chorus and an omnipresent work of bass guitar and drums on the rhythms), the abrasive and modern appeal (even for today) of “Formula One”, the slow paced Heavy Metal song with Hard Rock appeal heard on “Dollars” (the guitars are really presenting very good and catchy riffs), the melancholic and heavy “Tears of Rage” (the vocals and bass guitar are doing an excellent job, along very good keyboards), the catchy classic appeal of “Battalions of Hate” and “Thunderdome”. And as bonuses for this version of “Primal Fear”, here are “Breaker” (an ACCEPT cover, so it depicts clearly the core of the band’s influences), along with live versio0ns for “Chainbreaker” and “Running in the Dust”.

This reissue of “Primal Fear” is a fine way of the band to celebrate its 25th anniversary, and this gift is an offering to its fans. Celebrate as PRIMAL FEAR deserves!

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

4 Star Rating

1. Primal Fear
2. Chainbreaker
3. Silver & Gold
4. Promised Land
5. Formula One
6. Dollars
7. Nine Lives
8. Tears of Rage
9. Speedking (DEEP PURPLE Cover)
10. Battalions of Hate
11. Running in the Dust
12. Thunderdome
13. Breaker
14. Chainbreaker
15. Running in the Dust
Ralf Scheepers - Vocals
Tom Naumann - Guitars, Keyboards
Mat Sinner - Bass, Backing Vocals, Keyboards
Klaus Sperling - Drums
Record Label: Atomic Fire Records


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