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My Heroes - 95%

CaptainGordon_94, August 17th, 2015

When a band announces a major line up change, one can't help but wonder if the band will ever be the same again. And such was the case with Swedish giants Sabaton when in 2012 all but 2 of the members left, leaving lead vocalist Joakim Bróden and bassman Pär Sundström to pick up the pieces. Thobbe Englund and Chris Rörland were soon recruited as the new guitarists and Robban Bäck as the drummer who left after only one year due to him becoming a father. So as this was Sabaton's first release with new members there was a lot riding on the success of this album.

And with the very first song Night Witches Sabaton puts to bed any worries or doubts that people had concerning the future music of the band. Right from the start you can tell it is typically Sabaton with its catchy tunes, deep vocals and monstrous choruses (this song also features one of the best outros I have heard in a long time). On Carolus Rex the lyrics were still focuses on history but were shifted away from the World Wars and were centered on their own country's history. However on Heroes the lyrics are drifting back to the World Wars but are more focuses on the individual heroes which were eclipsed by the scale of the battles that Sabaton usually sing about. This is clear on songs like the solid Smoking Snakes and Far From the Fame

One noticeable change in Sabaton's music is much less synth-like keyboards and backing choirs, this is most likely due to the departure of their keyboard player Daniel Mÿhr. This change can be noticed on songs such as the incredible Resist and Bite and No Bullets Fly. But it wouldn’t be Sabaton without a little bit of keyboards and choir. With Joakim Bróden taking back over keyboard duties you can still get a sense of it on Hearts of Iron and the single To Hell and Back.

Heroes also has a couple of slower songs, one of those being The Ballad of Bull which is a neat little track about Australian Corporal 'Bull' Allen who saved 12 American soldiers. The song is a bit cheesy but it is nevertheless still listenable and certainly doesn’t spoil the album. Musically, Sabaton have never been better with these new members freshening up the sound as well as improving the live shows. Chris and Thobbe's guitar prowess can be heard on some of the stand out tracks such as Soldier of 3 Armies and Night Witches.

This album has really impressed me from start to finish and there really isn't anything more I could want from a Sabaton album. It has all the elements you could want; the musicians skill, the production quality, the history, the atmosphere. A very impressive release from a band that was on the edge of disaster.