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German Speed Metal 101 - 80%

Jophelerx, December 7th, 2017

Listening to Norwegian four-piece Black Viper's demo Storming with Vengeance is like taking a time machine to mid-to-late 80s Germany, and if I didn't know better, I could literally think it had come out circa 1989 in Germany, on the success of bands like Running Wild, Helloween, and Blind Guardian. The production might give it away to the keenest ear, but there are hardly any obvious modernisms present, and some of the more polished released from the late 80s aren't incomparable in that regard. The music is surely similar enough to fool any ear, as I hear no musical influences post-1988 in here. In fact, Running Wild's debut is probably the largest influence I can make out, though the occasional high shrieks certainly bear similarities to Walls of Jericho, and some of the riffs, such as the opening one on "Freedom's Reign," could be straight out of Battalions of Fear. The vocalist lacks the rasp and bite of Rock 'n' Rolf or Hansi Kursch, and he stays close to mid range most of the time, but that's not to say he doesn't do a quality job; the energy and passion are there, and he sells every line as well as the best of them. This is competent worship that's essential for any diehard German speed metal fan, and I look forward to hearing how they progress in the future.