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Locomotive Breath - 90%

Metantoine, June 11th, 2015
Written based on this version: 2014, Digital, Electric Assault Records

A one-man band formed by Enforcer's bassist Tobias Lindqvist, Terminal also plays heavy metal but instead of the typical and classic influences of the former, Tobias explores old school metal from the Communist bloc. Bands like Pokolgep (Hungary) or Aria (Russia) are obvious influences here. Add Slovenian lyrics (even though this is a Swedish project) and you're in business. While this is can be interpreted as a gimmick, the quality is through the roof and I'd listen to this short demo all day.

Eastern bloc heavy metal could be described as a super melodic form of Iron Maiden influenced twin guitar acrobatics. Aria were known as a Maiden clone but they were even more melodic and had hard rock leanings compared to the Brits. I think the fact that Steve Harris and company were, alongside Judas Priest, the most popular European metal band of the 80s had a lot to do with the sound developed in these communist countries, mostly secluded from Western Europe. They were the biggest around (watch Behind the Iron Curtain) so it's logical that their influence was grand. It's fun to hear a band that's inspired by what these countries were doing, it's some sort of second hand influence, it's like if NWOBHM was filtered through a bunch of eastern European nations and thrown into a big pool full of vodka.

Heavy Metal Lokomativa is like a shot of vodka, it's only six minutes long but oh boy, it rips hard. The two songs are showcasing two different sides, the first one, the title track is a fast track with pummeling riffs and super solid leads of epic might. It definitely has this locomotive vibe like an old Russian train making its way through the snowy landscapes of Siberia. On the other hand, “Slovo” (farewell in English) is more subdued, slower and emotional with some slight AOR tendencies but still retains the wonderful melodic leads of its predecessor. Terminal doesn't have any speed metal influences like Enforcer and the execution, ambiance and feel are more fringe, obscure and enjoyable. The mix is tight and the instrumentation is quite well done. I assume Lindqvist did everything himself, he's a pretty talented fellow then!

Tobias' vocals are legit, the Slovenian lyrics are giving them an original vibe and I always liked trad metal sung in another language, it's fun and fresh. The lyrics are apparently located in cheese country but goddamn, who cares, the Metalucifer metal school is a highly respectable institution. His voice is not quite powerful but the vocal lines are very catchy, he's not too high pitched and doesn't kill the vibe with unnecessary screeching falsettos. Nevertheless, the real stars are the guitars, they're singing beautifully and you should listen to what they're saying.

A new single will be released this July but I can't wait for a full length! Impressive stuff, guys.

I believe both the tapes (2 pressings on Ljudkassett) and the 7 inches vinyl (Electric Assault) are sold out but you can download it for free or pay what you on Bandcamp.

Metantoine's Magickal Realm