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Voltax – No Retreat……You Surrender Award winner

Voltax
No Retreat……You Surrender
by Stew Metallian Taylor at 12 July 2017, 12:14 PM

Mexico’s VOLTAX quote the following on their links; “There is no "Old School" or "New School", WE are Heavy Metal, as pure and as heavy as it can be played, no more, no less.”

I can say that I am biased towards bands like VOLTAX. They are full on Heavy Metal. They have the leather and bullet belts. They look like five banditos of Metal. Formed in 2006, “No Retreat……You Surrender” (great title by the way), is their fourth album and follow up to 2013 release “Hiding into Flames”. Always a Power Metal band with a hint of Thrash, this latest record is their most traditional Metal album. Think NWOBHM, a hint of MERCYFUL FATE and even a sprinkle of DEEP PURPLE and you get the picture. On repeat listen you really pick up a Progressive feel too, akin to bands like MANILLA ROAD.

“El Fin” (The End) kicks the album off in fairly-gentle style with an instrumental organ intro. This is an eerie prelude to the apocalyptic theme of “Broken World”. I must say at this point that the sound on this album grows on you. It’s raw and you need to get tuned in. Once you get in the mood though, it is quality Metal all the way. “Broken World” sets the tone for the album with galloping guitars and loose solos. Jerry’s vocals do go a bit KING DIAMOND at times but you do get used to it. “This Void We Ride” starts with feedback and then a fast, high pitched riff, like some obscure NWOBHM band. There is also a hint of Latin “cha cha” rhythm on the percussion. “Deadly Games” has a MOTORHEAD style riff and early MAIDEN style gear changes as the song gallops along. “Go with Me” has a more open riff and the vocals are more relaxed making it feel a bit more Rob Halford rather than KING DIAMOND.

“Starless Night” has a bit of Jon Lord style organ work. The sound has a more mysterious feel, again reminiscent of MERCYFUL FATE. It is still raw and made me think of Canadian thrashers EXCITER also. “Night Lasts Forever” is a short instrumental interlude, sort of 1970’s in style. “Explota” (I think this translates to “Exploiter”) is the one Spanish language song and is a real humdinger. It sounds like Udo Dirkschneider screaming in Spanish. Or even the band TRUST performing a live version of “Antisocial” in French. It’s like this song is better recorded in Spanish. “The Hero” is the penultimate song which is pretty Thrashy. The fastest song on the album, this one is a full on headbanger. This one speeds up all the way through and ends with a great riffing finale. This end is so good it might be the best early MAIDEN style song finish since, well, early MAIDEN. The final track is a cover of CHICAGO’S classic “25 or 6 or 4”. It’s a great choice too, with nice burbling organ. Jerry does an excellent job on the vocals on this one and the guitars rage. This would be awesome live.

Some may find this a bit raw and you do have to get tuned in. However, for me it has all the ingredients of a great Metal album. I may be slightly biased but I’m giving it an almost perfect score anyway. It’s my album of the year so far. Enjoy this all you headbangers out there.

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

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. El fin
2. Broken World
3. This Void We Ride
4. Deadly Games
5. Go with Me
6. Starless Night
7. Night Lasts Forever
8. Explota
9. The Hero
10. 25 or 6 to 4 (Chicago cover)
Lineup:
Jerry - Vocals
Diego - Guitars
Hector - Bass
Mario - Drums
Rich - Guitars
Record Label: Iron Shield Records
     


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