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Typical Iron Savior - 76%

Empyreal, May 24th, 2007

German speed metal can be a pretty deriative genre, with every band leeching off other bands in the genre like parasites. It's a positively incestuous relationship that produces some very solid and fun bands, regardless of your reservations against what might be called 'generic.' Iron Savior was at the forefront of this scene with Kai Hansen at the helm until around 2001, when he left. They then produced the absolutely outstanding Condition Red and followed it up with Battering Ram, and now we have Megatropolis, their latest effort.

Well, the first thing I noticed as I spun this disc...was that Iron Savior had not changed their sound at all. Did we expect them to? No. Do they really need to? Not particularly. Leave progression to other bands. Iron Savior are fine the way they are with their rather gruff and angry vocals and sleek, spacey, crunchy riffs. German heavy metal bands are never known for their variety and innovative skills, and Iron Savior is no exception. This is just solid fucking heavy metal with balls for those who love to bang their heads and pump their fists.

With that said, the songs here are all badass riff-mongers that will instantly satisfy their fans with no trouble at all. "Running Riot" in particular is a fabulous song and probably the best on the disc, sporting some very nice solo/riff interplay in the middle of the song. Other highlights include the dark, grinding "Flesh", the masterful title track, and the soaring "Still I Believe." I must single out "Cybernetic Queen", though, for being a goofy 80s hair rock song that never gets out of my head, and also "Cyber Hero" for having some really fucking annoying sound clips for the last 30 seconds or so. Maybe it's just the promo version? But overall you can pick any track here and enjoy it, because none of them are absolutely superlative and none are drop-dead awful.

Overall, this is quite a solid album. I can't say much more about it than the fact that it's 'solid', though. It's just not as energetic and powerful as we're used to from Iron Savior, not compared to their early works or Condition Red. You'll headbang to this, but it just doesn't feel very inspired. The band seems to have been simply going through the motions here, and no band can completely avoid that. Recommended to Iron Savior fans, but for newbies to the genre...go get Condition Red first.