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Hunt you like a raptor, like a raptor honey - 78%

Corimngul, March 7th, 2006

Majesty is back, and if you can’t stand the smell of cheese, walk back the same way you came. It’s no secret that Majesty aspires to be the new Manowar, having songs either about the greatness of heavy metal or warriors and their struggles. Hellforces is at least better than Reign in Glory, which pretty much was pressed on old, hardened but still stinking Roquefort cheese. Screaming “Epic War, Epic War” is a tad too much.

The music is traditional Majesty, which is best described as Manowar’s Warriors of the World United with keyboards, if a wee bit more melodic and groovy this time, taking half a step on their own away from the idols. It’s rockier and it has better solos than last time, and Tarek’s voice is stronger than last time. All these new attributes are present in the best song, Dance With the Demon, but the other anthems have got their fair share too.

With Hellforces, Majesty proves to be more varied and having more influences than we ever thought. Well they’re still cheesy and bombastic, nothing to do about it, but Hellforces has small, small Painkiller influences, and Tarek sounds a lot like Halford when pronouncing “erupting”. Another new influence is Accept, which presents itself through the song Like a Raptor, the fact that Stefan Kaufmann produced Hellforces and that Udo Dirkschneider does guest vocals on Metal Law 2006.

I’m partial to Guardians of the Dragon Call, as it starts just like the average fast power metal band and the lyrics about dragons aren’t far from Rhapsody’s. The slower parts sound more like Majesty, and are more successful. In the slowest part they experiment with pretty female vocals, and with such a short duration it only seems unnecessary. Nowhere Man seems to have a very unexpected source of inspiration, the Finns in Lordi! Next time I wouldn’t mind if they focused more on their own sound.

Overall it was a wise step for Majesty to distance themselves from Manowar, and Hellforces is definitely a positive step up from Reign in Glory. I suppose this is their most commercial album so far and if they only tried writing lyrics about other themes, they might get a wider audience. Former Majesty-fans shouldn’t be frightened by the newfound commercialism; Majesty has made one more solid and crowd-pleasing record with only a few fillers.