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March in Arms - Pulse of the Daring

March in Arms
Pulse of the Daring
by Kevin Lewis at 28 December 2020, 9:39 PM

MARCH IN ARMS is a Power Metal band formed in 2012 in the Sioux Falls, South Dakota, United States. "Pulse Of The Daring" is their second full-length record and follows their eponymous debut, which came out in 2018. Released independently on December 4, 2020, it is a record of songs about epic battles from throughout history and one song about a very impressive piece of military equipment.

The record opens with the song “1914”. With the first verse talking about assassination, this is the stage setter, World War I. Nations aligned with each other and fathers and sons went of to war to stop tyranny. As the chorus says, many of those men did not come home, they fell in fields and many were buried on foreign soil.

The title track, “Pulse Of The Daring” is a bit of a slow starter that turns a heavy riffed slow burner. With a subdued drum beat holding down a steady rhythm, the bass lurks under the guitar riff, waiting to pounce. There is a good mix of both bass and drums emerging from underneath to come thundering forth in order to punctuate the song. There is a lot of really good interplay with the instruments on this song.

Now we have to talk about the song “Thunderbolt”. This is a song about a plane, but not just any plane. The military like to describe the A-10 as a plane built around a gun. A really powerful gun. The sound of this plane and the gun it carries is distinctive and legendary. The weapon fires so many rounds so fast that the plane actually loses speed when the trigger is pulled. It is a sight, and sound, to behold.

Unlike other bands that like to sing about military battles and the history of warfare, MARCH IN ARMS also covers more recent events. “An Act Of Valor” is about Mogadishu, Somalia. Made famous by the movie Blackhawk Down, this was a heroic battle by a few soldiers that were greatly outnumbered and heavily outgunned. Starting with audio recordings from the event, the song is a gloomy, doom-laden ode to those soldiers’ bravery.

MARCH IN ARMS has some distinct similarities to bands like SABATON and IRON MAIDEN, but make no mistake, this is not a copycat band. Their sound is unique, especially adding in strings the way they do. And there are plenty of wars and battles that deserve the musical treatment to go around. Sometimes told from the perspective of the civilians living in war torn areas, there is always something new to consider.

MARCH IN ARMS are good musicians and songwriters. The guitars work well together and really make the songs sound unique. The rhythm section fits in beautifully, whether laying down a powerful beat or running along at breakneck speed to fill up the sonic space alongside the guitars. The addition of the strings and backing vocals adds another layer, giving this a bit of a symphonic feel at times.

Overall, this is a well-produced and mixed record. The songs are well written, the compositions are fresh and new. Skirting thrash at times, but staying very true to their power metal roots, MARCH IN ARMS has put out a really good album with some catchy tunes with great hooks, killer riffs and entertaining lyrics.

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

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. 1914
2. Altar Of The Gun
3. Welcome The Blitz
4. Nisei
5. Pulse Of The Daring
6. An Act Of Valor
7. No Years Resolution
8. Thunderbolt
9. Omaha
10. Not For Nothing
Lineup:
Ryan Knutson - Guitar/Vocals
Jon Parker - Guitar
Sheldon Swan - Guitar
Collin Citrowski - Bass
Bobby Cook - Drums
Additional performances from:
Emily Swan - Backing Vocals
Esther Nissen - Violin
Audrey Graber - Cello
Record Label: Independent
     


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