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Amazing heavy metal from Scandinavia - 94%

linkavitch, June 10th, 2010

Scandinavian Metal Attack is a five band split featuring uprising (at the time) artist from, where else, Scandinavia. One of the bands featured on Scandinavian Metal Attack is Bathory, which was more than enough to make me check this out, and I’m glad I did for this is one amazing split.

The Bathory side is by far my favorite side of Scandinavian Metal Attack. The first track, “Sacrifice”, is Venom worship with an intro riff that sounds similar to something from Motörhead. “The Return of Darkness and Evil” is different from the version on The Return...with the version on Scandinavian Metal Attack being a bit slower in tempo. The riffs have more of a speed metal influence to them instead of a black metal influence that would be later Bathory. The production on the Bathory side is actual better than the production on the debut album, with the drums being more audible and the riffs more distinct from each other.

Oz play very fast, fun, and catchy metal that is closer to hard rock in the line of Kiss. Their vocalist Tapani Anselm is really impressive. He doesn’t sound like anyone I've heard before with his deep voice that bounces everywhere and insanely catchy choruses. “Fire in the Brain” is loaded with fast melodic riffs and has the catchiest choruses on Scandinavian Metal Attack. The other track, “Search Lights”, is full of fast melodic riffs also, but it’s not as memorable due to it not having catchy choruses.

Trash play simple hard rock with some catchy riffs and great drumming. “Watch Out” is great with its catchy intro riff, hammering drums, and cool bridge section. “No More Rock Tonight” isn’t that good however, and its probably the worst track on Scandinavian Metal Attack. The track is too repetitive for my liking; a rather uninspired riff played over and over with Tony Hellander not sounding as good as he does on “Watch Out”. His high notes are unpleasant and it’s annoying to listen to him screaming at the top of his lungs. The Trash material sounds the loudest of all and have the best production job out of all five acts. The hammering snare drum and fiercely hit cymbals are always heard, with Tony Hellander and his Rob Halford-like shrieks drowning everything out. It’s a bit of a disappointment how Trash could write something like “Watch Out” (one of the best on here), but then write something like “No More Rock Tonight.”

Spitfire didn’t go anywhere or even release an album. I think the band broke up right after Scandinavian Metal Attack was released. Anyway, “Eyes of Storm” starts out like a ballad with a calming guitar and rather unremarkable vocals. After the ballad part is over the track gets better with its '80s groove, heavy riffs, and energetic vocals. You can clearly tell that he has no experience whatsoever on vocals, yet he doesn’t sound terrible. He has an average range, mostly hitting high notes, and other than the into of “Eyes of Storm” he’s quite good. “Crazy Living” is more of the same only without the ballad intro and Kimmo Morja is screaming like a maniac throughout.

Zero Nine are one of the first heavy metal bands from Finland. Zero Nine have some catchy riffs like the one on “Under the Sun”. The problem is that Zero Nine do not have that great of a vocalist. Kepa Salmirinne is the worst vocalist out of the bunch. His range is limited and sounds monotonous with the exception coming from the chorus on “Rock Away”. The drums are also bothersome with a bass drum sounding weak and the quiet snare being an annoyance also. There is a bit of groove in their sound, especially in the bass work. This helps Zero Nine out because it makes Zero Nine easiest to listen and get into.

Scandinavian Metal Attack is a great split with all five bands playing excellent heavy metal. Every track is great with the exception being “No More Rock Tonight”. This split is highly recommended and is worth everyone's time to check out.