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Ranger - Knights Of Darkness Award winner

Knights Of Darkness
by Andrija "TheIslander" Petrovic at 12 September 2013, 12:30 PM

Straight from Helsinki, Finland, RANGER comes rushing into the Metal scene. They`ve been around from 2009, staying unnoticed untill this year. They already have three demo recordings behind them, and finally are presenting themselves to broather audience with EP “Knights Of Darkness” that got picked up by Ektro Records. On this release, they offer re-recordings of “Touch Of Death” and  “Supreme Evil” from their “Combat Metal” demo that was recorded earlier this year, and three brand new songs, that are fast and furious, as they should be. This is some serious Speed Metal we`re talking about here.

The sound of the EP is quite interesting, cause you get a feeling that you`re listening to a cassette (yes, a cassette) that came straight from the 80s. The raw audio quality, and unique sound (yeah, it does sound like 80s, but before “big hair bands” 80s) makes them stand out on the first listening, which is quite rarity these days. The key to their uniqueness? Simplicity. They went back to basics, reminding everyone what makes heavy metal so powerful. When you have one vocalist that sounds like a banshee most of the time, double lead guitars that are ripping through the every song and one incredibly good drummer, you just can`t make bad music.

 The amount of energy this release holds is quite outstanding, and it can be felt from the very first track “Ranger”. With “Touch Of Death” bass comes to focus, and the rest of guys are just pushing it`s way to the limits. Guitar riffs turn into amazing Heavy Metal style solos, they don`t last long, but they`re there, just so you know. “Steel Dawn”, the only way to describe this song is to say that it`s the sound of Hell broke loose. Guitars may seem bit chaotic, but they`re kept tight by the consistent drumming. I mean, what else to expect from a song titled “Supreme Evil”? Title song “Knights Of Darkness” has the energy of the previous tracks, it`s not as fast, still catchy, bit MANOWAResque, and slightly HAMERFALLish.

The thing I really liked about this release, is how they made it nicely rounded up. The final accords of the “Knights Of Darkness” are the first ones of the opening track “Rangers”. So when it`s on replay you just don`t notice when last song became first, and you`re just pulled in by it again, and just can`t stop listening to it. Smart move, guys.

It may have only five songs on it, and it may be just an EP, but it`s quite a refreshing to know that someone is still making a music like this. It`s a metal recording that`s stripped to the bone by simplicity, but you won`t find a thing that`s lacking. This is one of those bands you should stick to closely, that can only get better by time.

4 Star Rating

1. Ranger
2. Touch of Death
3. Steel Dawn
4. Supreme Evil
5. Knights of Darkness
Dimi – Vocals, Bass
Jaakko – Guitars
Verneri – Guitars
Miko - Drums
Record Label: Ektro Records


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