without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
…because it’s better the original way. Call me old-fashioned. Call me conservative. Call me "Digital Dictator" if you wish, but life has proven that the first idea is usually the best. One should always trust the first impulse and expect a better success rate than using “the second thought” approach. Unless you are an idiot and you are always wrong, then there’s no scientific approach that will lead you to the hall of fame. But this is not the case, because Barón Rojo are far away from the idiocy realms. Even though, there was really no need to re-release Volumen Brutal with lyrics in English, and there’s no real value added, except the exposure of a market that required – and still requires – music with English lyrics to get international recognition. Although there are exceptions – In Extremo or generally black metal bands come to my mind – this is mostly true in metal, and it’s a shame, not only for being contradictory to the metal philosophy – or general concept -, but because most of these releases add nothing to the original version, and make it sound strange, and often forced.
Despite the introductory rant, the attentive reader may have noticed that the score is quite high – which may seem contradictory – which means that the music it’s just awesome, and despite the English verses being notably worse or dramatically changed, it’s impossible to give a bad score to this musical masterpiece. Barón Rojo, the second heavy metal band to be formed in Spain (after Ñu), and the best this country has offered to the metal world, plays heavy metal as good as it gets.
With the most memorable and catchy choruses, a wonderful guitar work and bass lines, and powerful trotting drumming, Barón Rojo deserves its own spot among the metal gods. The present work is the second full-length, and their best all time output. The very distinctive guitar tone and singing has always been their trademark, and with an always versatile compositional style; from mid-paced catchy anthems, going through masterful instrumentals and moving ballads, to almost speed metal killers. All of this without boring the listener, or causing the “I’ve heard this before” feeling. From the first moment when “Isolation ward” kicks off with the crunchy and a bit fuzzy guitar sound, you will get impressed by the energy this band performs with; the singer with a really heartfelt attitude, the furious guitars, a fast, firm drumming and bass lines that strengthen the sound to form the solid rock Volumen Brutal is. Versatility is not something that only applies to song-writing skills, though. The singer, for example, mostly performs harsh singing in low-mid frequencies, but he has no problem when he has to change to a more melodic style (“Someone’s loving you”), sing a ballad (“Give me the chance”) or dwell in the higher frequencies or throw the occasional pierced scream (“The flowers of evil”).
“But precisely, what’s so outstanding of this album?” One may ask. “Take into account that I listen to Maiden for breakfast, I dress up like DeMaio, my shit has a profuse dose of titanium, my erotic fantasies include trios with Lemmy, Halford and Tommy Iommy and I think Metallica sold out with ‘fade to black’”. Well, pretty much in this album is outstanding, in fact the Spanish version would have a score close or equal to 100%, but I will remark some wonders for those who are not familiar with the band: First mention goes for “Stand up”, with a fast as hell rhythm, and one of the catchiest choruses and main riff ever, this song is one of the classic pieces of the band. The solos are masterful as well; those who like Accept or Priest like solos (who doesn’t?) will worship this band as well. Second mention goes for “Rockers go to hell”, also a classic, this one is a mid-paced anthem, supporting the metal spirit and way of life (this made more sense in the context of 80s Spain). With a catchy chorus and main riff, this song will get you hooked like Saxon or Manowar would do. Third and last thumbs up goes for “Termites”, a tasteful, yet raw, critic to the system with awesome lyrics; never recurring to boorish language - Mago de Oz, this is how lyrics should be written – and rubbing salt into the wound. These are my personal favourites, but any other song in the album is top notch as well.
Now, as introduced in the first paragraphs, there is an important “Neddy-no-no” in this release: the translation to English. While the original meaning mostly stays, most sentences do not work half as well as they do in Spanish. For example, some lines in “Termites” just sound silly; the chorus with “Tell me!” instead of “Cuando!”(when), or some sentences that were completely changed and lost the charm and inventiveness; “The council cares for you like a baby-sitter” instead of “pasado pagarás por cualquier invento”(the day after tomorrow you’ll pay for some invention). “Stand up” is another good example of pointless translation; the second verse before the chorus is not nearly as good as the rhyme in Spanish:
”You want money, so you kill
Nothing matters if you win
You aim at power through your lives
So you tell dirty lies”
”Por dinero asesináis
Por placer aniquiláis
Por poder nos destruís
The most horrible harm goes for the songs with completely new lyrics and titles, though; “You’re telling me” instead of “Hermano del rock & roll”(Rock & roll brother), “Someone’s loving you” instead of the mythical “Satánico plan (Volumen brutal)” (Satanic plan (Brutal volume)); the former is about fucking a chick instead of the original “Bond with rock & roll” topic, the latter has changed to lyrics about “realize how happy you should be with someone by your side”, instead of “play your guitar loud & proud”.
To sum up, this is a rather pointless and misleading release, and there’s no excuse to get it instead of the original version. If you don’t speak Spanish and you are interested in the lyrics, do as everybody else does: use google translate.