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Ironbourne – Ironbourne Award winner

by Neil Cook at 10 April 2021, 5:41 PM

IRONBOURNE are from Ludvika, Sweden.  Their roots don’t go back far, to 2019, but spread deep musically.  Their brand of Metal is built from the Ferrous foundations of classic Rock and Metal with influences of some of the finest NWOBHM bands and a big helping of “Headless Cross” era SABBATH both musically and vocally. Torbjörn Andersson’s vocals have a power, majesty, but can also do emotion with clarity and tone.  But lets not forget a great voice is only one instrument that makes up a good band, and the rest of the guys are well up for the task in hand, and combine to make a stellar group, who deserve a wide audience.

So let’s let the music do the talking.  Opening track “The Dreamer” starts with a very Heavy Southern Rock feel and a riff similar to “Ready For love” by BAD COMPANY, but don’t get me wrong this isn’t any old rip-off, this is a powerful and heavy statement of intent and illustrates their depth and appreciation of good Rock.  And “Elusive Reality” comes up next and is a different feel altogether, the opening is pure SABs before launching into a tune built on a crunchy groove laid down by the backline of Lars and Stefan, and combines bags of melody in the chorus and some blistering guitars from Olaf and Jonas. The groove is very now, reminds me of my favorites BALEFUL CREED. We then get some VERY Heavy Blues with “Varsel”.  The guitars are dirty and heavy in equal measure and man that solo!

Twilight Of Gods” Is pure SABS, DIO, RAIBOW. A fantastical rock saga. A tale only the best Metal bands can tell without sounding clichéd and silly.  And whilst the song has loads of swagger and power it isn’t clichéd in the slightest.  Next comes the beautiful and powerful “Too Late”.  These are the songs legends are built of.  Any band that can pull off a song with such emotion and power deserve high praise indeed. I love this song, I cannot wait to be in a sweaty crowd punching my fist in the air singing “too late” at the top of my voice.  It is the complete package.  By contrast “Covenant”  is a ferocious riff and snarled vocals, and some great twin axe work, a short sharp punch to the throat to make sure we don’t get too soppy.

Hit The Wall” starts with a creepy guitar over a heartbeat before transforming into an out and out Rocker! That is the spirit of Bonzo pounding them drums? And the guitars are channeling Mr Page? The vocals are all Ironbourne though! “Runaway” is fast and loud, and takes me waaay back to my teenage years listening to the Friday Rock Show on Radio 1 in the UK, to Tommy Vance playing all the latest and greatest NWOBHM.  This would have been right at home, and I would like to believe on heavy rotation. Leaving us with “Year Of Judgement”, a heavy slab of SABs to finish up. Eight and a half minuets of heaviness, which is exactly what I mean by Tony Martin era SABBATH power given their own twist. That slow doom-laden pummeling groove, is a very tasty way to end an album, before going right back to the start and enjoying again.  And the spoken vocals scared the shit out of me.

Yes IRONBOURNE have roots in the past, but the strong and mighty Oak that they are will continue to grow and develop from their solid foundations to mix my metaphors.  I NEED to see these guys live.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 10
Production: 10


5 Star Rating

1. The Dreamer
2. Elusive Reality
3. Varsel
4. Twilight Of Gods
5. Too Late
6. Covenant
7. Hit The Wall
8. Runaway
9. Year Of Judgement
Torbjörn Andersson – Vocals
Olof Geijer – Guitars
Lars Andersson – Bass
Jonas Windle – Guitars
Stefan Viktorsson – Drums
Record Label: Pure Steel Records


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Edited 11 May 2021

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