Thursday, July 31, 2014

Grave Digger - Return of The Reaper (2014)

It is indeed the return of the reaper when the German band Grave Digger returns with their 17th album of their career. The band has been in the game for over 30 years and has been one of the leaders when it comes to the development of German power metal. Most of the fans agree on that the band has hit their peak during the 90's with albums like "Tunes of War" and "Excalibur", but there is no denying that the Germans still packs quite a punch in their music.

Nothing is severely different here from earlier albums, except that this album does not have a cohesive theme like its predecessor "Clash of The Gods". And it starts off in a furious tempo after the calm title track that opens up the album. "Hell Funeral" blasts off in classic Grave Digger fashion and it is sure to be a powerful piece that pumps up the crowd at a concert. The following track "War God" is maybe not as fast, but it packs a great amount of punch with its straight forward chorus. And then we have "Tattooed Rider" that is a good epic track that is the track that stands out the most in the album.

But there is something happening with the album after that track, and it is not for the better. The song quality drops for every songs and it just seems like the album does not know where to go in which direction. The songs are not necessarily bad, they are just lackluster. Some songs in the later half like "Resurrection Day" and "Death Smiles At All of Us"  saves some of the band's honor, but it is not enough to save the album.

One thing that comes up for me is that the band is trying to reinvent themselves, not only in the music, but also in the lyrics. "Grave Desecrator" does what it suggest, it has dug up famous Grave Digger lines like last supper and bagpipers play tunes of sorrow. It is still a great song, but the lyrics bug me. And when the band tries to be innovative, they fail miserably. The ballad "Nothing To Believe" is the perfect example, a boring track that ends the album in a sleepy mood. I could have sworn that I nodded of to this song at one of the listening sessions I had.

This review may come out as a very negative one and that I think this album sucks, which is not the case. "Return of The Reaper" is a decent album that is typical Grave Digger, but the problem is that the set list is not very strong and that the band can do a lot better. With over 30 years of experience, you would think that these Germans would know how to make a solid album. Oh well, some songs entertain and the cover art is fantastic, it will have to do until next time.

Songs worthy of recognition: Hell Funeral, Tattooed Rider, Grave Desecrator

Rating: 6/10 War Gods

No comments:

Post a Comment