IRON SAVIOR – The Landing

Band:IRON SAVIOR
Title:The Landing
Genre:Heavy/Power Metal
Year:2011
Label:AFM Records
Tags: , , , ,
Wednesday, December 14, 2011 : 0 Comments

The German Heavy/Power Metal band IRON SAVIOR is still alive and has, after an absence of 4 years, returned to the battlefield. Piet Sielck (vocals/guitar) and co. last released an album in 2007 under the title “Megatropolis”. See the review here. This also took the band three years. Originally scheduled for 2006, Piet had his hands full with a.o. the label Dockyard 1 (which has some time ago closed its books) and producing other bands. But IRON SAVIOR’s sixth album was a fact. And in my humble opinion, it was not their best effort, especially compared to the preceding albums. Then SAVAGE CIRCUS came to the forefront and thus IRON SAVIOR was put in the fridge.

Now, 4 years after the last album, the Germans are back with a new album: “The Landing”, out since the 18th November 2011. And they found a new label home: AFM Records. And of course the band continues the lyrical context of Science Fiction (according to Piet himself – see here -, only two songs this time), as it has done since the self-titled debut album back in 1997. This was also a key element when the band was formed, that the lyrics would be set in a Sci-Fi context. Expectations were high, at least from my part. The line-up changed again: bassist Yenz Leonhardt was replaced by Jan S. Eckert, who had been in IRON SAVIOR before. See the “Condition Red” album. One remark on the new album, “The Landing”: the mp3-promo, at least mine, didn’t come with the last track, “No Guts No Glory”, even if it’s part of the standard tracklist. So I had to check YouTube for it. Hm…

Anyway, “The Landing” begins with “Descending”, a symphonic intro where the Metal soon falls in and leads to “The Savior”. This is a midtempo galopping song, in typical IRON SAVIOR style. Also, it’s quite comparable to SAVAGE CIRCUS, which is a logical thought. And like with most IRON SAVIOR songs, the music is very melodic and hymnic, but heavy as well.  It must be said, however, that Thomas keeps his drumming quite linear and this can annoy, but luckily he adds some twists during the guitar solo. “Starlight” is where speed is increased a few steps. It’s your typical fast, double-bass Power Metal track which is standard on every one of the band’s albums and something they do very well. Excellent stuff if you want to get re-energised.

“March Of Doom” is, contrary to the title, not a slow song. In fact,it’s another straight-forward Power Metal song, powerful and energetic, with the characteristic guitarwork. The solo is, once again, one of the highlights, and a key ingredient in IRON SAVIOR’s repertoire. With “Heavy Metal Never Dies” Piet has written a cheesy song. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s catchy, it rocks, it’s got an 80’s feel, it’s the truth and it has been sung about by many bands (MANOWAR, IRON SAVIOR, GAMMA RAY, KISSING DYNAMITE, DESTRUCTION, SAXON, and so on). It’s almost a religious hymn, in other words. After this sing-along intermezzo, let’s carry on with “Moment In Time”. Power Metal introduced by the bass and drums, this combo alone sounding very cool. Then the guitars and vocals are added and the whole quite simply ROCKS! Epic Metal, you could call it. It’s got an emotional touch somehow, but despite that, the song’s got speed.

“Hall Of The Heroes” is a power ballad in vein of HAMMERFALL, MANOWAR and so on. It’s ok, though nothing super. “R. U. Ready” is another 80’s uptempo Heavy Metal track, comparable with the band’s debut album. Solid material, to keep it short. As the title says, “Faster Than All” is another fast Power Metal song, this time – to my ears – in vein of PARAGON, a band for which Piet has done producing in the past. Very good stuff, in any case. Whereas the preceding power ballads were ok, I have to say that “Before The Pain” is totally redundant. It sounds lame, if I may be so frank. The Danish Power Metal band MANTICORA also has some ballads in this style and while they sound whiney, these type of songs, the Danish do a better job at keeping things listenable. And last there’s “No Guts No Glory”, a fun sounding 80’s Heavy Metal track. Nothing super, but enjoyable nevertheless.

IRON SAVIOR is one of my favourite Power Metal bands and each album is a must-have – save for perhaps “Megatropolis”, which wasn’t as Heavy/Power Metal as the others. I admit that at first my opinion on “The Landing” wasn’t all that positive, but letting it rest for a while and picking it up again and really listening to the songs proved me wrong. Piet and co. have indeed done well to kick back life into the band and create another solid Power Metal album that would confirm this band’s time is far from over. This release is a varied one, musically, as you can consider it a combination of the band’s back catalogue. In short: very recommended!

 

 

Tracklist:

  1. Descending
  2. The Savior
  3. Starlight
  4. March Of Doom
  5. Heavy Metal Never Dies
  6. Moment In Time
  7. Hall Of The Heroes
  8. R. U. Ready
  9. Faster Than All
  10. Before The Pain
  11. No Guts No Glory

 

 

Line-up:
Piet Sielck – vocals, guitar
Joachim Küstner – guitar
Jan S. Eckert – bass
Thomas Nack – drums

More info at http://www.iron-savior.com/
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