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After a few adventures with relatively unknown bands like Fight and Two, Rob Halford returns to his roots with his new band Halford, or so they say. If you listen to Resurrection I do hope you don’t hear Halfords roots, for that would mean opera, something Rocka Rolla-ish or whatever Judas Priest was doing in the 70s. I don’t hear anything of that sort on this album. With this album, Halford did get back into the picture with a mixture of oldschool metal and a modern touch. The most important aspect of all is whether this combination works for Halford.
This release features some very heavy metal, distortion in every corner of every song. Apart from the heavy guitars, Halfords voice is rawer than ever before or after and at times even too raw for its own good. And furthermore we have the drummer adding his own definition to the word ‘heaviness’. Bobby Jarzombek uses his double bass drums wherever he thinks it’s necessary. I do think the band had a little too much faith in their vocalist and therefore were a bit sloppy on the songwriting department. While this album certainly has its moments, there are some terrible songs on here and most of it is pretty forgettable as well. Songs like “Night Fall”, “Twist” and “Temptation” have a nice theme overall and perhaps a nice riff or two, but don’t have enough content to keep me listening. The forced epic “Silent Screams” has its moments but it’s very poorly written and sung at some moments, especially the heavy part. On the other hand, this album does contain “Resurrection” and “Made in Hell”, which are two kickass powerful songs with good riffs and great vocals. To gain a better view of the album, we will go a bit into details.
The album opens with the title track, which is just a damn good song. It starts off mysteriously, with suddenly Halfords shrieking vocals screaming and then the riffs come in and the drums. A great way to open the album and the chorus is very powerful, with Halford continuously singing with his high-pitched voice, the only time Halford does that throughout the entire song. Then there’s “Made in Hell”, another great powerful song. This one is more oldschool in sound but still kickass nonetheless. Here we are already given a sign that our dearest Rob likes to sing with the rawest voice ever and that is one of the reasons this album will start to irritate. “Locked and Loaded” is terrible. The way the song begins, with Halford singing ‘I’ve got no sympathy’ like he is Mr. Cool Guy, is really awful and the awful riff doesn’t add anything either. Then there’s “Night Fall”, it's not a bad song per say, but it doesn’t have ‘it’. I guess the chorus is semi-catchy, but it doesn’t do it. “Silent Screams” is, as mentioned before, a forced epic. It starts off with arpeggiated chords, like all wannabe epics do, and the whole band joins in on the slow chorus. It’s actually not that bad a ballad so far, but Halford wants more and they add a fast aggressive part in it where Halford sings with the rawest voice ever and that just sucks! This really ruined an otherwise okay song. Though the return to the slow chorus is really great, this song will not reach the status it could’ve had. A notable but unmemorable collaboration with Bruce Dickinson on “The One You Love to Hate” is extremely heavy but in the end not so very spectacular. With “Cyberworld” as a quite enjoyable song mostly due to its fast-paced drums and cool outro, we are entering the more balanced second part of the album.
Though this side is more balanced, it doesn’t mean it’s more enjoyable. There're just no more outbursts of coolness and sadness (with one exception which we’ll get to later on). We have a few songs ahead of us that mostly all have a nice chorus but are quite basic in structure and very stripped down. “Slow Down”, “Twist”, “Temptation” and “Saviour” all fall under this category. It’s meaningless to discuss them all separately, since there’s nothing more to say about these songs. They’re okay, fine, but I would count them as filler material. One thing is worth a mention though: on “Temptation” on the bridge we have a clear hint towards Priests “A Touch of Evil”, for using the exact same melody and way of singing there. Then we get to the final abomination of this album... “Drive”. Though bands have sung about sex before, I don’t think I’ve ever come across a lyric so damn dirty before. As this one uses the comparison to driving a car, ‘I got you under my wheels now baby’, this is really awful. Not to mention the music is awful too, with Halford singing with full distortion on his voice again and the riff being terrible as well. This is terrible and too low a quality for a man with the reputation of Metal God.
In short, this album is very forgettable and there’s nothing spectacular about it. Get the first two tracks somehow and perhaps listen the other tracks once, but that’s it. The rawness of Halfords voice ruins most of the songs and with the majority of the songs being very basic in structure and filler material this album is not worth your money. Go check out some other Halford albums instead, like Crucible or Winter Songs. This is collectors only.
Strongest tracks: “Resurrection” and “Made in Hell”.
Weakest tracks: “Locked and Loaded” and “Drive”.