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Attack's Strongest Release - 89%

ballcrushingmetal, September 18th, 2017

Attack's third album "Destinies of War" represented their highest point, both from creative and musical perspectives. Taking cues from Manowar, Judas Priest, Helloween and (mostly) Iron Maiden, the German metallers released a masterpiece, which regardless of being widely obsessed with fairy tales, seems to follow the Manowar spirit of playing on ten at some points. Nevertheless, due to the fact of not being released by Helloween, nor being part of the Keeper's saga, the album followed the luck of other releases in the German power metal scene: being criminally underrated.

Similarly to other releases in the scene, Destinies offers a good rhythmical variety that moves towards different directions, and these Germans were definitely able to put their shit together. Starting in a quite epic fashion, the album kicks-in with the Helloween-esque speed metal number "Wonderland", which is an average Euro power metal number. Than, talking about Maiden-esque numbers, you have "The Battle's Lost" and "Death Riders". The first is an excellent well-done number which is seemingly inspired by Maiden's classic "The Trooper", while the second is a mind-blowing epic that could be easily ranked as one of the best numbers in the metal scene. During its nine minutes, the song practically repeats the structure of Maidens' lengthy epic "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" combined with the typical songwriting techniques from Helloween. The result is incredible. You have a really enjoyable piece that grows from an acoustic intro into impressively accelerated speed metal lines.

Then the ballads "Blind Man" and the title-track are above average compositions. In great part, their success owes much to the Middle-Age atmosphere that decorates the album. Said atmosphere is somehow similar to what Paradox used as part of their sophomore effort released in the same year so as to provide an appropriate background for their tales dealing with the 13th century Catharism. Such an ingredient helped these songs sound different from the other ballads, since at the end, making ballads is not a quite difficult task, but making them sound special is not easy at all.

Besides the atmosphere, the album offers interesting guitar work from Sossnierz and Riepert that would manage to provide enough riffs to each song, as well as incredible solos. And together with their front-man Ricky Van Helden, the band brought out a real masterpiece, and due to its quality, it comes to no surprise that it became an undefeatable piece that although hidden in the underground, remained throughout the years as a gem that few lucky listeners would be able to find out, but if you are one of those, then you are quite a lucky person.

One of Attack's Finest - 85%

Xeogred, August 16th, 2007

Although it'll always be a mystery as to what was going on between this release and their previous Return Of The Evil from 1985, with Beastkiller that's been lost in the past and barely anything is known about its history, Destinies of War is easily Attack at their peak where they really had a grasp at what they were going for, a perfection of their sound and style.

Engaging and very uplifting Attack could be the very band that started this now current Euro-Power metal plague that's been sweeping the metal world of today. Attack however had what most bands these days lack and that's charisma and attitude. The pace and everything may be cheesy but at times you can almost feel some kind of magic emitting from these songs. Ricky Van Helden seems to hit his peak with his masterful work on vocals, odd and very cheerful you'll find yourself engaged with every single chorus here. Melodic and very vibrant Helden's vocals fit this style perfectly.

There's definitely a huge emphasis on melodic technique's and creating a very catchy experience here. The guitarwork could be compared to Iron Maiden's Piece of Mind, though molded in a power metal glove. While there's a large sum of repetition here, Attack nails this focus perfectly and nothing here is too overdone, abused, or repetitive. Guitarists Gerd Sossnierz and Chreddy Riepert utilize dual harmonies in almost every track while some acoustics appear on various tracks like The Battle Is Lost. The solo work is reminiscent of some NWOBHM bands, as if the guitars start to engage in some kind of fierce battle trying to out due each other. Who can shred the best? The guitars complement each other flawlessly throughout every song. Both the bass and drums don't really go above and beyond, but they fit perfectly and complete this great lineup. Production wise, I'll just simply say it gets two thumbs way up.

The consistency and quality throughout this album seems entirely unstoppable. They completely nailed the track listing as it just seems to keep getting better and better with no signs of dropping until you hit the end of the disc, then you'll find yourself restarting it all over again. Alright, so there is a weakest link and that's The Last Surviving Man which does manage to almost ruin the moment as it just feels too traditional and laid back then compared to most tracks. That could be however because it follows after Death Rider, arguably one of Attack's best songs if not their absolute finest. The equivalent to something Tyrant (US) could have written and Helden's scream in the middle of it is exhilarating.

Overall this album is very comparable to Helloween's Keepers which brings me to my biggest question here: Why aren't these guys still active? It is extremely unfair that these guys aren't one of the big names out there currently, a band that should rightfully be brought up with names like Gamma Ray, Helloween, Running Wild, and so forth. Of the melodic European power metal genre, this is hands down a classic and something old school Keepers-esque Helloween fans will drool over easily. This gets my certificate at being Attack's finest release though its not too easy to say that, since Attack has had a pretty damn consistent career (that they did have). Their Revitalize remake / compilation is probably their best release next to this, but overall you can't go wrong with any of their stuff and this is easily one of their best!