Thursday, January 19, 2017

Grave Digger - Healed By Metal (2017)

"Healed By Metal". Let that title sink in for a bit. Yes, it is one of the cheesier ones out there, but what can you really expect from a band like Grave Digger, who has been in the game for a lot of year, doing their own thing. The point is, as long as the band holds its own weight, you know that the end result will be a good one, which is usually the case with these Germans.

Well, not much has changed since 2014, which is when they last released an album ("Return of The Reaper"). It is still catchy German heavy metal with its roots planted in the medieval age. The music is familiar, the themes as well, leaving no fan disappointed. Sure, it is cheesy here and there (especially in the title track), but it works really well.

What ultimately defines a Grave Digger record is the quality of the songs, and we got several ones that has the potential to knock you off your feet. "When Night Falls" is an instant classic, a powerful charge with sweet riffs, solos, and an epic chorus that was made for loud mouthed metal heads. Another mauler is "Call For War", and even if it might be stolen from Sabaton's classic recipe of bombastic power metal, it is still a blood pumping song that suits the band very well. Then we have "Hallelujah", which... well.. do I really need to mention that it makes you a believer? Thought so.

There are a couple of songs though that are more reminiscent of classic rock than pure heavy metal, and the consequences for the album is that it becomes less cohesive in its sound. While the bonus song "Bucket List" does not make any sense at all, I do think that this different sound worked to a small extent. "Free Forever" has a really nice catchy chorus that does not take too much space, but it just does not have the punch to make me love it. Punch is something "Kill Ritual" do have in its chorus, which is arguably the catchiest one in the album, but there is something about it that makes it feel stolen. Possibly from some late 80's band or something. Oh well, it is a really fun song, and the band truly shows it with their playful performance.

While the album does have several nice outings here and there, I almost feel like "Healed By Metal" had the same main problem as its predecessor, that it just lacks the momentum to carry through the entire playtime. Songs like "Laughing With The Dead" and "Ten Commandments of Metal" tries to change up the tempo, but it ends up holding the album back instead. I guess this is a problem only a few of you would agree with me on, but I just feel like it is a missed opportunity here, they could have done it better. With that said though, it is still obvious that the band has a lot of fire left in them, so they will probably not hang up their instruments just yet.

So yeah, "Healed By Metal" may not truly possess any healing powers that would revolutionize the medical system, but it eases the pain that we all experience when we go on for a prolonged time without our favourite type of music. It is an enjoyable album with several good hits here and there, nothing too ground breaking or anything, but comfortable enough for your everyday listening session. Yes, Grave Digger delivers yet another good, solid album with good German heavy metal.

Songs worthy of recognition: When Night Falls, Call For War, Kill Ritual

Rating: 7/10 Lawbreakers

www.grave-digger.de/
twitter.com/GRAVEDIGGERclan

More reviews of Grave Digger
Return of The Reaper

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