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Mediocrity in 8 Parts - 66%

Erdrickgr, January 1st, 2008

It's not a bad CD. Really, it's not. It's just a sea of musical mediocrity, with cheesy lyrics. Not that we expect lofty things from Manowar... cheesy lyrics is their schtick, after all. "If you do not like metal, you are not my friend".

The vocals are sometimes mid-ranged, sometimes falsetto singing and screaming, and are very good. They actually work well with the cheesy lyrics--I can't imagine a guy with a death metal grunt singing this stuff. By this point in their career, the vocalist has a pretty good ear for when to stay low key, and when to turn the amp up to 11.

As far as guitars go, there isn't much that's memorable here. The guitar work isn't bad--there even some nice riffs and melodies--it's just not very memorable stuff. The production is fairly good, and the instruments do sound good, there just isn't enough instrumentation going on for the listener to hear. There's a lot of sustaining chords, dead air, etc.

The bass is good, as one might expect from this band. The drums, on the other hand, are a sore spot for me. I'm thinking especially of the drum solo. It's hard to make a drum solo interesting, but it's even worse to put it in a song that is already way too long at 28 minutes! What were they thinking? I guess if you're gonna bury a drum solo somewhere, though, that'd be the place to do it.

Again, this isn't a bad album, it just has a definite "been there, done that" vibe to it. There's nothing new here, it's just music playing, to be forgotten as soon as you stop the CD. If you're interested in the band, you'd be better off getting one of their older albums.